By Harry Allison
So, you think you know a lot about what Pete Rose did to incur his banishment from the game in 1989?
And you think 26 years is long enough to be in baseball’s jail — no job in MLB,no consideration for the Hall of Fame for the all-time hits leader.
Meet John Dowd.
The man who led the investigation of Rose and sat face-to-face with him for two full days of interviews, says today that baseball’s all-time hit leader should never be allowed back into the game.
To Dowd, former special counsel to the commissioner of baseball, hired to probe those now infamous allegations, Rose is the supreme example of why betting on professional baseball is such a sin when done by those within the game itself.
“This (gambling) is just such a terrible business … it really does infect the game,” Dowd told the Cincinnati Enquirer in a lengthy interview last week. “Pete committed the capital crime of baseball.
“But this is bigger than just Pete Rose. There is a reason we haven’t had another gambling case in 26 years. This case wasn’t about Pete – this case was about protecting the integrity of the game. When we investigated (former Phillies star) Lenny Dykstra for gambling, he told us: ‘Thank God for Pete Rose because now I know what the ultimate price was.’ ”
Rose officially re-applied for reinstatement to baseball last week, and newly appointed Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said he would meet privately with Rose and consider the request. But Manfred also specifically said that he would review the report Dowd submitted in 1989 on Rose’s gambling, as well as baseball’s constitution and the actual agreement Rose reached with then-commissioner Bart Giamatti.