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Pete Rose is not a fan of the unwritten rules

Apr 5, 2013, 2:17 PM EDT

Image (1) rose.jpg for post 3569

He’s not a fan of any rules, actually, but those unwritten ones really bug him:

On the unwritten rules of baseball:
I used to get screwed when we had a seven- or eight-run lead, because I couldn’t bunt for a single or I’m “showing up the opposition.” … Guys that are home run hitters can continuously just swing from their ass and trot around the bases. I remember one time we had a 7-1 lead in the sixth inning in Houston, and J.R. Richard was pitching. I hit a single to right-center and I went to second. He threw at the next two hitters because I was showing the team up! What am I supposed to do when I got a 10-run lead, just go up there and strike out?

On Ben Davis breaking up Curt Schilling’s perfect-game attempt in 2001 with a bunt single:
[The unwritten rules] are stupid. Who cares if you bunt for a base hit? The only guys who criticize him on that are losers. Now if it had been 10-1, maybe. But down 2-0? I’d bunt, too.

That comes from Jonah Keri’s interview of the Hit King over at Grantland. It’s a good read — I love the Bob Gibson anecdote — and a good reminder that for as bad as Rose can make himself appear at times, the dude knows baseball.

And I am 100% on board with him with that unwritten rule garbage.  When the other side quits playing, fine, you quit playing too. Until then, suck it up.

  1. asimonetti88 - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:22 PM

    “When the other side quits playing, fine, you quit playing too.”

    I’m of the opinion you don’t quit playing until the game is over. If the other team wants to give up, that’s good for them, but you should still keep playing.

    • El Bravo - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:17 PM

      Is that you Bill Belichick?

      • asimonetti88 - Apr 5, 2013 at 5:16 PM

        In traditional Belichick fashion I’m going to choose to dance around that question.

      • largebill - Apr 9, 2013 at 10:08 AM

        Key difference is in baseball, unlike football and other sports, there is no clock. Theoretically, as long as you have outs left the game can go on forever.

        To be clear, I don’t have a problem with running up the score in the other sports either. If you don’t want your opponent to score then stop them from scoring. Don’t whine to reporters after the game that the guy who just beat you was being unsportsmanlike.

  2. The Goche - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:22 PM

    Pete Rose: Also not a huge fan of the (one) written rule.

    Still, totally agree with him on this.

  3. historiophiliac - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    What he says is: you shouldn’t quit playing your best because you’re ahead. What he means is: you have to cover the spread.

    • unclemosesgreen - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:15 PM

      He always bets and plays to the over. People who bet the under are rooting for a boring baseball game. They always deserve to lose.

    • hasbeen5 - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:16 PM

      Hard feelings from the other thread aside, that was funny. Nice work.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:21 PM

        I don’t want you to have hard feelings. I want us to agree that we can have different interpretations of things and respect that. I’m not out to piss you off here.

      • hasbeen5 - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:30 PM

        I agree. I didn’t have hard feelings, was hoping you didn’t either.

      • heyblueyoustink - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:57 PM

        “I’m not out to piss you off here.”

        Some days, that puts you in the minority around here! :-)

        Anyway, we should have some HBT unwritten rules, like never quote ‘cepts, or diagree with the proctor, simply poke at him.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 5, 2013 at 5:37 PM

        Look, I argue hard but I don’t come at people with bad intentions.

      • Old Gator - Apr 5, 2013 at 7:05 PM

        Then you will never get your bad intentions out of your system.

    • indaburg - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:49 PM

      Ha! Good one.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:56 PM

        he he Did you see we’re giving the Yanks a good dooming?

      • indaburg - Apr 5, 2013 at 4:10 PM

        You literally just read my mind. I had the game on. We’re at DOOMCON 1.

      • Old Gator - Apr 5, 2013 at 7:06 PM

        What color is that level? Greenish-yellow?

      • historiophiliac - Apr 5, 2013 at 8:40 PM

        I hope it’s something blanched, OG.

  4. mgflolox - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:28 PM

    Whatever your opinion of Pete Rose, one thing that can never be disputed is that he put every ounce of energy he had, from the first pitch to the last, into winning every single game he ever played.

    • stercuilus65 - Apr 5, 2013 at 5:57 PM

      That was his schtick yes.

  5. mybrunoblog - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:31 PM

    Pete knows more about baseball in his pinkie that we know in our whole bodies. I wish Rose was out coaching in the minors or at college because he has a lot to offer the game. Furthermore, I confess. I liked the reality show.

    • UgglasForearms - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:54 PM

      You had me, until the last 5 words.

      • newpairofsox - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:45 PM

        I heard that Selig was considering lifting the ban until you reminded him of that god awful show.

      • badintent - Apr 5, 2013 at 11:57 PM

        I was hoping that Pete were impregnated her. I want to see her fake tits exploded when the milk facet got turned on.

  6. bla bla bla - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Excellent read.

    • unclemosesgreen - Apr 5, 2013 at 7:07 PM

      twinkle twinkle

  7. Francisco (FC) - Apr 5, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    Just goes to show that Pete Rose the Baseball Man, is great. Too bad all the non-Baseball stuff just did him in.

    • stercuilus65 - Apr 5, 2013 at 5:58 PM

      “non baseball stuff”? You mean like betting on baseball?

      • Francisco (FC) - Apr 7, 2013 at 8:01 PM

        And Lying about it, being a prick while protesting innocence and not to mention being an all around arrogant bastard. You could say he burned any goodwill he could have had by mishandling his suspension. Basically he behaved as if reinstatement and the Hall of Fame was something he was entitled to rather than something he would have to earn back.

  8. DelawarePhilliesFan - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:22 PM

    May 17th, 1979, Chicago. Phillies are ahead by 10 runs, Bowa on 3rd, Pete Rose on 2nd. Flyball to left-center field, not deep at all. Bowa will score easily to make to an 11 run lead, with Rose still in scoring position. Pete decides to tag up and advance to 3rd, and BARELY makes it. You never do that, right? Showing up the opponent, right?

    Next batter hits a fly ball and Rose scores on the sacrficie. Cubs later tie the game, and Phillies win in extra innings. And they would not have, had Rose not tagged up. Yea, it is fair to say he never believed in that rule.

    • cwillhe - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:57 PM

      I don’t know. This play happened in the 5th inning of a game that had already seen something like 25 runs scored. I don’t think the unwritten rules really apply there.

      Why does Rose really care about a bunt single when his team is up by 7 runs in the 8th inning? Same reason he gave himself hundreds of at-bats in Cincy when he was over 44 years old: he was interested mostly in his own numbers.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Apr 5, 2013 at 4:23 PM

        At that point – in 103 years of MLB play, no team had ever lost a game in which they lead by 11 runs in the 5th inning. Zero. None. Zip. Nada. 103 years, never happened. The odds were 99.999% in the Phillies favor when he made that move – except they were actually 0.001% higher (staistically speaking). If the unwritten rule does not apply with something that never happend in 103 year, when would it apply?

        As for his hits as a player manager, at the time he broke Cobbs record he managed 177 games – and sat himself in 55 of those, despite the fact that his average as a Player/Manager at that point was .289. He had those hits because a manager, he knew he was better suited to hit then his back up was – Tony Perez!

      • cwillhe - Apr 5, 2013 at 5:16 PM

        Good stuff. I’d always just read the talking point that Pete Rose selfishly played himself at the end of his career to catch Rose. It’s surprising to see a healthy .395 OBP in 1985. He was still a well below average player as his .293 batting average was about as empty as the the past few nights, but he wasn’t as terrible as I was led to believe.

        Did you know that Tony Perez actually had a better WAR than Pete Rose in 1985? And in way fewer plate appearances.

        Nobody said the unwritten rules were rational. I think they’re an acknowledgement of the 162 game schedule. No single game is important enough to needlessly extend and interfere with dinner plans.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Apr 5, 2013 at 8:16 PM

        The funny thing is – he did get cheap hits in ’83 with the Phillies, they let him ride way too long. And then 1986 with the Reds – yea, that was ridiculous that he still played. So I think those two looped together and formed an opinion that clouded his ’84 and ’85 numbers.

        Real mixed bag he is – such a bum, but oh those memoried from 79- 82. Deciding Game of the NLCS in 1980, Phillies are down 5-3 (DOWN 5-3) and flips his bat after walking and yells at Nolan Ryan “You don’t have enough runs!”

  9. multiplemiggs - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    baseball…sport full of vaginas

    • bla bla bla - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:37 PM

      That’s probably pretty good for you, then, as you’re unlikely to ever so much as see one otherwise.

    • stlouis1baseball - Apr 5, 2013 at 4:32 PM

      multiplemiggs…hung like a field mouse.

      • bla bla bla - Apr 6, 2013 at 4:21 AM

        Or a hamster! Or a bull gerbil!

    • skerney - Apr 5, 2013 at 4:35 PM

      Stop it. Don’t talk bad about vaginas, it’s rude. I for one think they are great.

    • jiminthebay - Apr 5, 2013 at 7:24 PM

      girl johnsons

  10. hisgirlgotburrelled - Apr 5, 2013 at 3:43 PM

    There’s no such thing as an insurmountable lead in baseball. It’s not a timed game. You can’t run out the clock. So, yeah, unless the losing team says they won’t swing the bat then what’s the problem with adding on runs?

  11. js20011041 - Apr 5, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    I remember the Ben Davis bunt. Bob Brenley was such a schmuck after that game. I’m actually a believer in unwritten rules and not showing up the opposition, but arguing about that was just stupid. It was a tight ballgame and he put the tying run at the plate. You should never apologize for trying to win the game.

    • schmedley69 - Apr 5, 2013 at 6:22 PM

      I lost a lot of respect for Brenley after that “chickshit” tirade.

  12. schmedley69 - Apr 5, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    Pete has his flaws, but there is still a lot to like about the guy. Loved watching him play. Next time I’m in Vegas, I’ll make it a point to try and go see him.

  13. wicaste - Apr 5, 2013 at 5:57 PM

    I’m with Pete, you play the game! Bunt is a hit. Don’t like it? Throw him out. Don’t want anyone to get a hit? Strike him out or get him to get pop or ground out. You play the game to win or just stay away!!!
    Pete played the game to win and on that note, he gambled playing or managering? Exactly! He’s the greatest PLAYER!!! Put him in the hall or get rid of it! He’s not going as a manager.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 5, 2013 at 6:13 PM

      He’s the greatest PLAYER!!

      Not even close. He wasn’t even the best player on his team. And for like the 10329037th time, what has Rose ever done that makes you give him the benefit of the doubt that he didn’t bet while he was playing?

      • largebill - Apr 9, 2013 at 10:13 AM

        Actually a review of his history with gambling would lead me to assume (not convict, but assume) he was betting on baseball long before his playing days were over. I remember reading the the NL president had the Reds warn him about his gambling associations long before he left the Reds the first time.

  14. denny65 - Apr 6, 2013 at 4:06 AM

    The HofF will become legitimate only when Pete Rose is inducted. Until then, it remains a small tourist enclave in upstate New York with interesting baseball memorabilia.

  15. northstarnic - Apr 6, 2013 at 9:08 AM


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