Pete Rose: I would have been better off ‘beating my wife’ or abusing drugs
In candid comments comparing the controversy surrounding Alex Rodriguez to his own, baseball legend Pete Rose said he obviously “picked the wrong vice” in the controversy that led to his lifetime ban from the sport.
Rose, of course, was banned from baseball for life in 1989 for gambling on games during his managerial career with the Cincinnati Reds. During an appearance on 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh on Monday, he was asked for his input into the situation involving the Yankees’ Rodriguez, who is appealing a 211-game suspension as part of the league’s investigation into the former Biogenesis clinic’s distribution of banned performance-enhancing drugs.
In short, Rose suggested he would have faced a lighter sentence from baseball if he had abused alcohol or drugs, or beat his wife or girlfriend.
“You have to understand, I don’t call these guys to do shows, they call me. And of course with all this steroid talk and the 12 guys being suspended and A-Rod appealing, they want my input because I’m suspended for life. Hey, everything is a different case,” Rose said.
“I made mistakes. I can’t whine about it. I’m the one that messed up and I’m paying the consequences. However, if I am given a second chance, I won’t need a third chance. And to be honest with you, I picked the wrong vice. I should have picked alcohol. I should have picked drugs or I should have picked up beating up my wife or girlfriend because if you do those three, you get a second chance. They haven’t given too many gamblers a second chances in the world of baseball.”
Rose, who is MLB’s all-time hits leader, was banned in 1989 by then-commissioner Bart Giamatti. He finally publicly admitted to betting on games as Reds manager in 2004, when he released the autobiography, “My Prison Without Bars.”