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Peter Edward Rose Sr.

Peter Edward Rose Sr.

Personal Info
Birth April 14, 1941 (1941-04-14) (age 83)
Cincinnati, Ohio
Professional Career
Debut April 8, 1963, Cincinnati Reds vs. Pittsburgh Pirates, Crosley Field
Team(s) As player

Cincinnati Reds (19631978)
Philadelphia Phillies (19791983)
Montreal Expos (1984)
Cincinnati Reds (1984 - 1986)
As manager
Cincinnati Reds (1984 - 1989)

Career Highlights

  • Most career hits (4,256)
  • Most career games played (3,562)
  • Most career at bats (14,053)
  • Fifth in career runs (2,165)
  • Most career total bases, switch-hitter (5,752) (sixth overall)
  • Second in career doubles (746)
  • 44-game hitting streak (tied for 2nd longest in history)
  • The NL MVP Award (1973)
  • The NL Rookie of the Year Award (1963)
  • 17× All-Star (1965, 1967–1971, 1973–1982, 1985)
  • 3x World Series (1975, 1976, 1980)
  • World Series MVP (1975)
  • Cincinnati Reds No. 14 retired
  • Fifth in career post season hits (86)
  • Tenth in career post season total bases (118)
  • Ninth in career post season at bats (268)
  • Three batting titles
  • Two Gold Gloves (1969 and 1970, both for outfield)
  • Most seasons of 200 or more hits (10)
  • Played 500 or more games at five different positions (only player to do so)
  • Seven hitting titles
  • Five game titles
  • Five doubles titles
  • Four baserunning titles
  • Banned from baseball for life after violating Rule 21(d) (Gambling)

Peter Edward "Pete" Rose Sr. (born April 14, 1941 in Cincinnati, Ohio), nicknamed Charlie Hustle, is an American former player and manager in Major League Baseball who played from 1963 to 1986, best known for his many years with the Cincinnati Reds. Rose, a switch hitter, is the all-time major league leader in hits (4256), games played (3562) and at bats (14,053). He also leads the career lists in singles, plate appearances, and times safe on catcher's interference. He won three World Series rings, three batting titles, one Most Valuable Player Award, two Gold Gloves, the Rookie of the Year Award, and made 18 All-Star appearances at an unequalled four different positions (2B, OF, 3B, 1B). Rose's 2 Gold Goves were as an outfielder in 1969 and 1970. Pete Rose's slogan was "Somebody's gotta win and somebody's gotta lose and I believe in letting the other guy lose."

In August 1989, three years after he retired as an active player, Rose agreed to a lifetime ban from baseball amidst accusations that he gambled on baseball games while playing for and managing the Reds; this included betting on the Reds but not against them. After years of public denial, in 2004 he admitted the accusations were true. After the initial ban the Baseball Hall of Fame had specified that individuals who are banned from the sport are ineligible for induction; those who were banned had previously been excluded by informal agreement among voters. The issue of his possible reinstatement and election to the Hall remains a contentious one throughout baseball.

Pre-professional career[]

Rose grew up in a working class area of nearby Anderson Ferry, Ohio as one of four children to Harry and LaVerne Rose, and was encouraged as a young boy to participate in sports. His father, who played semiprofessional football, was the biggest influence on Rose and his sports career. He played both baseball and football at Western Hills High School. Rose paid so little attention to his studies in ninth grade that his teacher decreed he would have to attend summer school or be held back. His father vetoed that idea: it was better for his son to repeat a year of school, Harry Rose said, than miss a season playing ball. Barred from his high school team because of his poor performance in class, he got onto a Dayton amateur club instead and batted .500 against grown men. By the time Rose had graduated in 1960, he had impressed the Reds enough for them to offer him a $7,000 contract, with $500 more if he made it all the way to the major leagues and managed to stay there for a full year.

Professional Career[]

Minor leagues[]

Rose was signed by the Reds as an amateur free agent on July 8, 1960, and was assigned to the Geneva Redlegs of the New York-Penn League. In 1961 Rose was promoted to the Class D Tampa Tarpons of the Florida State League where he batted .331, set a league record for triples and led the league in fielding errors.

Rose's next move was to the Class A Macon, Georgia team, where he hit .330, leading the league in triples and runs scored. During a spring training game against the Chicago White Sox in 1963, the Reds' regular second baseman, Don Blasingame, pulled a groin muscle. Rose got his chance and made the most of it. During another spring training game against the New York Yankees, Whitey Ford gave him the derisive nickname "Charlie Hustle" after witnessing Rose sprint to first base after drawing a walk. Despite (or perhaps because of) the manner in which Ford intended it, Rose adopted that nickname as a badge of honor.

Major Leagues[]

Early years[]

Rose made his debut on opening day, April 8, 1963 against the Pittsburgh Pirates and drew a walk. On April 11, Rose – who was 0-for-11 at the time – got his first Major League hit, a triple off Pittsburgh's Bob Friend. He hit .273 for the year and won the National League Rookie of the Year Award, collecting 17 of 20 votes, and defeating Ron Hunt of the New York Mets.

On April 23, 1964, in the top of the ninth inning of a scoreless game in Colt Stadium, Rose reached first base on an error and scored on another error to make Houston Colt .45s rookie Ken Johnson the first pitcher to lose a complete game no-hitter. Rose slumped late in the season, was benched, and finished with just a .269 average.

Rose came back in 1965 to lead the league in hits (209) and at-bats (670), and hit .312, the first of his 10 seasons with 200-plus hits and the first of 15 consecutive .300 seasons. He hit a career-high 16 home runs in 1966, then switched positions from second base to right field the following year. In 1968, Rose started the season with a 22-game hit streak, missed three weeks (including the All-Star Game) with a broken thumb, then had a 19-game hit streak late in the season. He had to finish the season 6-for-9 to beat out Matty Alou and win the first of two close NL batting-title races.

Rose had his best offensive season in 1969, leading the league in batting for the second straight season (.348) and leading the league in runs with 120. As the team's leadoff man he was a catalyst, rapping 218 hits and walking 88 times. He hit 33 doubles, 11 triples, and a career-best 16 homers. He drove in 82 runs, slugged .512 (by far the highest mark of his long career), and had a .432 OBP (also a career best). But the Reds finished four games out of first, and Pete lost the MVP to Willie McCovey. Rose and Roberto Clemente were tied for the batting title going into the final game; Rose bunted for a base hit in his last at-bat of the season to beat out Clemente. Cleon Jones of the New York Mets was 3rd.

1970 All-Star Game[]

File:Rose Fosse.jpg

Rose colliding with Ray Fosse during All-Star Game

On July 14, 1970, in brand new Riverfront Stadium (opened just two weeks earlier), Rose was involved in one of the most infamous plays in All-Star history. In the 12th inning, Rose led off with a single and went to second on a single by the Dodgers' Bill Grabarkewitz. The CubsJim Hickman then singled sharply to center. Amos Otis' throw beat Rose to the plate, but Rose barreled over Indians catcher Ray Fosse, separating the catcher's shoulder, to score the winning run. Fosse never fully recovered from the injury and he has remained critical of Rose's aggressive maneuver to this day.

1973 National League Championship Series[]

File:Rose Harrelson Fight.jpg

Rose and Bud Harrelson fighting in Game Three

In 1973 Rose won his third and final batting title with a .338 average, collected a career-high 230 hits and was named the NL MVP. The Reds ended up losing the National League Championship Series to the Mets despite Rose’s eighth-inning home run to tie Game One and his 12th-inning home run to win Game Four. During Game Three of the series Rose got into a fight with Mets shortstop Bud Harrelson while trying to break up a double play; the fight resulted in a bench-clearing brawl.

44-game hitting streak[]

On May 5, 1978 Rose became the 9th and youngest player in major league history to collect his 3,000th career hit, with a single off Expos pitcher Steve Rogers. On June 14 in Cincinnati, Rose singled in the first inning off Cubs pitcher Dave Roberts; Rose would proceed to get a hit in every game he played until August 1, making a run at Joe DiMaggio’s record 56-game hitting streak, which had stood unchallenged for 37 years. The streak started quietly, but by the time it had reached 30 games, the media took notice and a pool of reporters accompanied Rose and the Reds to every game. On July 19 against the Phillies, Rose was hitless going into the ninth with his team trailing. He ended up walking and the streak appeared over. But the Reds managed to bat through their entire lineup, giving Rose another chance. Facing Ron Reed, Rose laid down a perfect bunt single to extend the streak to 32 games. \ Keeler]] at 44 games; but the next day the streak came to end as Gene Garber of the Braves struck Rose out in the ninth inning. The competitive Rose was sour after the game, blasting Garber and the Braves for not challenging him with fastballs.

Rose goes to the Phillies[]

On a team with many great players that is acknowledged by many as one of the greatest teams ever, Rose was viewed as one of the club's leaders (along with future Hall of Famer, first baseman Tony Pérez). The influence that Rose's hustling team attitude had on his teammates was very likely a factor in the success of what was called "The Big Red Machine". His 1975 performance was considered outstanding enough that he earned the Hickok Belt as top professional athlete of the year and Sports Illustrated magazine's "Sportsman of the Year" award. The following year, Rose was a major force in helping the Reds repeat as World Series winners. The 1976 Reds sweept the Phillies 3-0 in the National League Championship Series and the Yankees 4-0 in the World Series. The 1976 Reds remain the only team since the expansion of the playoffs in 1969 to go undefeated in the postseason.

In 1979 Rose became a free agent and signed a four-year, $3.2 million contract with the Philadelphia Phillies, temporarily making him the highest-paid athlete in team sports. In the 86 years before Rose arrived and 22 years after he departed, the Phillies went to the playoffs just three times. In five years with Rose, the Phillies earned three division titles, two World Series appearances and one World Series title (1980).

Back to the Reds[]

In 1984 Rose signed a one-year contract with the Montreal Expos. On April 13, Rose doubled off of the Phillies’ Jerry Koosman for his 4,000th career hit, joining Ty Cobb to become only the second player to accomplish that feat. Rose was traded to the Reds for infielder Tom Lawless on August 15, and was immediately named player-manager, replacing Vern Rapp.

On September 11, 1985 Rose broke Cobb’s all-time hit record with his 4,192nd hit, a single to left-center field off San Diego Padres pitcher Eric Show. Rose’s final career at-bat was a strikeout against San Diego’s Goose Gossage on August 17, 1986. On November 11, Rose was dropped from the Reds’ 40-man roster to make room for pitcher Pat Pacillo.

Pete Rose still holds the record of 10 200-hit seasons, but Ichiro Suzuki of Seattle,, in his 9th season playing in the United States, extended his record streak of consecutive 200-hit seasons to 9 - and will have a chance to tie Rose's total of 10 in 2010.

Post-playing career[]


Rose continued to manage the Reds, and on April 30, 1988 he shoved umpire Dave Pallone while arguing a call; National League president A. Bartlett Giamatti suspended him for 30 days.

Lifetime ban[]

By the 1980s, Rose was gambling heavily on several sports, and by most accounts lost large sums. Amid reports that Rose had bet on baseball while Reds manager, he was questioned in February 1989 by outgoing commissioner Peter Ueberroth and his replacement, Giamatti. Three days later, lawyer John Dowd was retained to investigate charges against Rose. A March 21, 1989 Sports Illustrated article tied him to baseball gambling.

The Dowd Report asserted that Rose bet on 52 Reds games in 1987, at a minimum of $10,000 a day. On August 24, 1989, he voluntarily accepted a permanent place on baseball’s ineligible list. Rose accepted that there was a material reason for the ban; in return, Major League Baseball agreed to make no finding of fact with regard to the gambling allegations and on the provision that baseball would cease exploring Rose's activities (leading some observers to speculate that Rose may have bet against the Reds while managing them; had further investigations uncovered this, he would have been liable to criminal prosecution under "sports bribery" laws, which typically prohibit athletes from betting against themselves but not on themselves), and that after one year Rose could reapply for reinstatement. Rose, with a 412-373 record, was replaced as Reds manager by Tommy Helms.

On February 4, 1991 the Hall of Fame voted to formally exclude players banned from baseball from being placed on their ballots.

Tax evasion[]

On April 21, 1990 Rose pleaded guilty to two charges of filing false income tax returns not showing income he received from selling autographs, selling memorabilia and horse racing. On July 20 Rose was sentenced to five months in federal prison and fined $50,000, being released on January 7, 1991 after having paid $366,041 in back taxes and interest.

In September 1997 Rose applied for reinstatement (Bud Selig, the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, is still considering the matter). Under the Hall of Fame's election rules, Rose will not be eligible for entry into the Baseball Hall of Fame until 2009 (when the Veterans Committee could select him for entry (if he is reinstated).

The Jim Gray interview[]

Before game two of the 1999 World Series, Rose received the loudest ovation during the introduction of the members of the Major League Baseball All-Century Team. After the ceremony on live television, NBC's Jim Gray repeatedly asked Rose if he was ready to admit betting on baseball and apologize: [1]

Jim Gray: Pete, now let me ask you. It seems as though there is an opening, the American public is very forgiving. Are you willing to show contrition, admit that you bet on baseball and make some sort of apology to that effect?

Pete Rose: Not at all, Jim. I'm not going to admit to something that didn't happen. I know you're getting tired of hearing me say that. But I appreciate the ovation. I appreciate the American fans voting me on the All-Century Team. I'm just a small part of a big deal tonight.

JG: With the overwhelming evidence in that report, why not make that step...

PR: No. This is too much of a festive night to worry about that because I don't know what evidence you're talking about. I mean, show it to me...

JG: Pete, those who will hear this tonight will say you have been your own worst enemy and continue to be. How do you respond to that?

PR: In what way are you talking about?

JG: By not acknowledging what seems to be overwhelming evidence.

PR: Yeah, I'm surprised you're bombarding me like this. I mean I'm doing an interview with you on a great night, a great occasion, a great ovation. Everybody seems to be in a good mood. And you're bringing up something that happened 10 years ago ... This is a prosecutor's brief, not an interview, and I'm very surprised at you.

JG: Some would be surprised that you didn't take the opportunity.

Most people were outraged over Gray's aggressive questioning, feeling that it detracted from the ceremony. Others felt that given the dichotomy of Rose's banishment from baseball and his inclusion on the All-Century Team, the questions were appropriate. Earlier that season, Rose had been ranked at number 25 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players.

Coming clean[]

In his autobiography My Prison Without Bars, published by Rodale Press on January 8, 2004, Rose finally admitted publicly to betting on baseball games and other sports while playing for and managing the Reds. He also admitted to betting on Reds games, but said that he never bet against the Reds. He repeated his admissions in an interview on the ABC news program Primetime Thursday. He also said in the book that he hoped his admissions would help end his ban from baseball so that he could reapply for reinstatement. The criticism of Rose did not diminish after this admission - even some Rose supporters were outraged that Rose would suddenly reverse fifteen years of denials as part of a book publicity tour. In addition, the timing was called into question - by making his admission just two days after the Baseball Hall of Fame announced its class of 2004 inductees, Rose appeared to be linking himself publicly to the Hall. Further adding to the debate was the 2004 ESPN made-for-TV movie Hustle, starring Tom Sizemore as Rose, which documented Rose's gambling problem and his subsequent ban from baseball.

"You Can't Blame Major League Baseball"[]

In October 2005, ESPN Classic aired, as part of its regular series, The Top 5 Reasons You Can't Blame... Major League Baseball for Keeping Pete Rose Out of the Hall of Fame." Their reasons:

  • 5. Shoeless Joe Jackson. Whether he actually did make plays to cause his team, the Chicago White Sox, lose the 1919 World Series or not, he accepted money from gamblers to do so. For this reason, he has never been elected to the Hall of Fame. If he's not eligible for induction, the reasoning goes, Rose shouldn't be, either. In addition, because of the Black Sox Scandal, the rules against betting on baseball and consorting with gamblers are posted in every professional baseball clubhouse, where it is seen (if not read) every day by every person who comes in. The rule was clear, Rose knew it as well as anyone else, and broke it anyway. And, as a baseball historian, particularly aware of Ty Cobb and his contemporaries (and Cobb was a friend and admirer of Jackson), Rose knew full well the consequences of Jackson's actions. He bet on baseball anyway.** While ESPN also did a "You Can't Blame" trying to let Jackson and the other "Black Sox" off the hook for throwing the Series, they did not take a stand on whether Jackson, more than half a century after his death, had suffered enough and should be in the Hall.
  • 4. The Hall of Fame. It decides who shall be permitted in and not. The Hall's Board of Directors chose to make ineligible for induction any person on MLB's "permanently ineligible" list. If the Hall changed its mind and said that Rose, Shoeless Joe or anyone else on the list was now eligible for induction, there's nothing MLB or its Commissioner could do about it, short of lobbying the voters to vote against Rose and/or Jackson. It's out of MLB's hands.
  • 3. The death of Commissioner Bart Giamatti. Had he lived, Rose would have been able to petition him, rather than his successors, for reinstatement. But with Giamatti dying just a week after handing down the decision, MLB decided that one way to honor his memory was to make the Rose ban permanent. Giamatti's friend, deputy and successor as Commissioner, Fay Vincent, still says he would keep the ban if it was his choice. Vincent's successor, Bud Selig, also a friend of Giamatti's, has said he won't change his mind, either.
  • 2. The Dowd Report. The quantity and quality of the evidence it provides is overwhelming, and proves Rose's guilt beyond reasonable doubt.
  • 1. Rose lied about his actions for 15 years. Had he, from the beginning, admitted what he'd done, apologized, and asked MLB and baseball fans for forgiveness, it's likely he would have been given a lesser penalty, or perhaps reinstated after a few years. It has been said that America is a forgiving nation, but the forgiveness must be preceded by confession and repentance, and while Rose has now confessed, he gives the impression that he is sorry only that he was caught and punished, not for what he did to get there. As a result, several of the Hall-of-Famers themselves, Bob Feller in particular, have expressed adamant opposition to adding Rose to their list.

Pete Rose and WWE[]

During the years 1998 to 2000 Rose performed in WWE's annual spectacular, WrestleMania. Rose would often be on the receiving end of either a chokeslam or a piledriver delivered by a man already known to many fans as "The Big Red Machine," Kane. In October 2002 he starred alongside Kane in a Halloween-themed commercial for No Mercy 2002. In 2004 Rose appeared at WrestleMania XX, where he was inducted to the WWE Hall of Fame, becoming the first member of the "Celebrity Wing."

Military service[]

Rose entered the United States Army after the end of the 1963 baseball season. He was assigned to Fort Knox for six months of active duty, which was followed by three years of regular attendance with a Reserve Unit at Fort Thomas, Kentucky. At Fort Knox, he was a platoon guide and graduated basic training January 18, 1964, one week before his marriage to Karolyn. Rose then remained at Fort Knox to assist the sergeant in training the next platoon and helping another Sargent train the Fort's baseball team. Rose received some special treatment during basic training, including not receiving a crew cut and palling around with the colonel. Later in his Fort Thomas service, Rose served as company cook.


Pete Rose has a daughter, Fawn. His son, Pete Rose Jr. ("PJ"), is a professional baseball player who had an 11-game run in MLB with the Reds in 1997. Since then, he has bounced around the minor leagues. In 2005, PJ played third base for the defending Atlantic League of Professional Baseball Clubs champion Long Island Ducks. In early November 2005, PJ was indicted for allegedly distributing gamma butyrolactone (GBL), a drug sometimes sold as a steroid alternative to his Chattanooga Lookouts teammates. GBL is a legal drug often sold as a paint stripper and it can be used to make GHB. He pleaded guilty and could face up to two years in federal prison.


I’d walk through Hell in a gasoline suit just to play baseball. -Pete Rose

He is Cincinnati. He's the Reds. -Sparky Anderson, Hall of Fame manager

My goal is 3,000. If I can play 150 games for the next five years, I’ll reach 3,000 on July 16,, make that 1978. -Pete Rose, in a 1972 interview. He hit safely for the 3,000th time on May 5, 1978.

Records and achievements[]

  • Major League records:
    • Most career hits - 4,256
    • Most career games played - 3,562
    • Most career at bats - 14,053
    • Most career singles - 3,315
    • Most career total bases by a switch hitter - 5,752
    • Most seasons of 200 or more hits - 10
    • Most consecutive seasons of 100 or more hits - 23
    • Most seasons with 600 or more at bats - 17
    • Most seasons with 150 or more games played - 17
    • Most seasons with 100 or more games played - 23
    • Record for playing in the most winning games - 1,972
  • Only player in major league history to play more than 500 games at five different positions - 1B (939), LF (671), 3B (634), 2B (628), RF (595)
  • National League records:
    • Most years played - 24
    • Most consecutive years played - 24
    • Most career runs - 2,165
    • Most career doubles - 746
    • Most career games with 5 or more hits - 10
    • Modern (post-1900) record for longest consecutive game hitting streak - 44
    • Modern record for most consecutive game hitting streaks of 20 or more games - 7
  • NL MVP Award (1973)
  • NL Rookie of the Year Award (1963)
  • 18 All-Star selections
  • Three World Series rings (1975, 1976, 1980)
  • World Series MVP Award (1975)
  • Two Gold Glove Awards (1969 and 1970, both as an outfielder)
  • Roberto Clemente Award (1976)
  • The Sporting News Player of the Year (1968)
  • The Sporting News Sportsman of the Year (1985)
  • The Sporting News Player of the Decade (1970s)
  • WWE Hall of Fame inductee (2004)

See also[]

External links[]

[[Category:Philadelphia Phillie
Preceded by:
Ken Hubbs
National League Rookie of the Year
Succeeded by:
Dick Allen