Pete Rose has been banned for baseball for 25 years now and the topic of his reinstatement is as hot button of an issue as ever. Former Phillies Hall of Fame third baseman and current analyst Mike Schmidt wrote about Charlie Hustle over the weekend which seemed to light a fire in the media as well.
Mike Schmidt writing for the Associated Press:
With 25 years of his sentence gone by, isn't it time for a parole hearing? This wasn't a capital crime. He placed a couple bets on his team, but never altered a game's outcome.
Yes, this is a crime against baseball. But to make him an example as if he were some sort of criminal, or menace to society, is ridiculous.
Sure, there have been other personal issues with Pete's open-book life of which he is not proud. But he's 73 now, and at least his case should be re-examined for the sake of closure.
He goes on to make a point I tend to agree with the most. How someone feel about Rose's situation seems to be in line with how someone feels about gambling on the game, or the PED issue today. It's all in the eye of the beholder.
Which leads us to the round table discussion on ESPN's First Take yesterday. They brought on respected sports reporter Jeremy Schaap to give some credibility to the segment. It's mostly thoughtful analysis.
Personally, I think I'm one of the rare baseball fans who doesn't have a strong opinion either way on Rose's situation. If I had to lean one way or the other, I'd lean towards Schmidt's line of thinking. Give a guy a second chance.