Skip to content

Joe Morgan thinks Pete Rose should be in the Hall of Fame

Aug 13, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT

Joe Morgan headshot

You’ll be shocked — shocked! — to hear that Joe Morgan thinks Pete Rose should be in the Hall of Fame. From Bob Nightengale’s latest:

“I think if you’re going to allow guys with PEDs on the ballot,” Morgan told USA TODAY Sports, “then we have to allow him to be on the ballot. Let’s face it, he’s been punished for 24 years. I think they have to take a second look at Pete now that this has come out.”

Nowhere does Morgan explain what actual nexus there is between “this coming out” and Rose’s baseball disgrace, but after watching him do Sunday Night Baseball for so many years I’m aware that cause-and-effect are not his strong suits. For now let’s just chalk this up to one of the strongest baseball forces out there: “my generation was better/was not as bad as this younger generation”-ism. The greats were greater, in [insert player’s] day and the bad guys were not nearly as bad as these new monsters. It’s the oldest thing around.

In other news, I’m pretty sure that Morgan would back Ted Bundy, D.B. Cooper and the Zodiac Killer for the Hall of Fame if they spent some time with the Reds in the 70s. Because Morgan talking up Big Red Machine guys is an even stronger force than the generational thing.

  1. waiverclaim - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:34 PM

    Well yes, he should be, as in theory the Hall Of Fame shouldn’t have anything to do with what MLB does. Being banned from MLB should not mean being banned from the HOF.

    • stex52 - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:36 PM

      Other than accepting the lifetime ban at the time it all happened.

      • jm91rs - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:44 PM

        I don’t know for sure, but was he aware that a lifetime ban from baseball meant no Hall? I think he’d only be worried about losing his managerial gig at the time.

      • Craig Calcaterra - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:57 PM

        The Hall of Fame has its own rules, but they have decided that if MLB bans someone, they won’t consider them. They could change that at any time, but are very adamant about not wanting to.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:00 PM

        If he didn’t know that a lifetime ban would include exclusion from the Hall of Fame, then he sure didn’t read the paper he had signed with the Commissioner indicating that he would accept the lifetime ban punishment.

        I guess one is personally responsible if they don’t run their medication by MLB officials.

      • dodger88 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:04 PM

        Actually, the Hall of Fame did not formally institute their ban until the year before Rose would have been eligible to appear on the ballot. As such, when Rose was banned in 1989 he was still eligible for the HOF, as slim as his chances may have been.

      • Joe - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:07 PM

        If he didn’t know that a lifetime ban would include exclusion from the Hall of Fame, then he sure didn’t read the paper he had signed with the Commissioner indicating that he would accept the lifetime ban punishment.

        Actually, if he didn’t know that a lifetime ban would include exclusion from the Hall of Fame, then he sure couldn’t see into the future, because the Hall of Fame formally adopted the rule AFTER (and in response to) Rose’s ban from MLB.

      • raysfan1 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:08 PM

        Every clubhouse has signs posted stating betting on baseball means banning. Every player also signs a statement to the same effect. Plus, Joe Jackson a shoe-in for the HoF (pun intended) until the Black Sox scandal, had already been dead for decades and was/is still not in when Pete Rose got banned. Rose knew he would not get in as long as he remained banned. He does seem to naively have thought he would be reinstated though.

      • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:47 PM

        Pete has always bragged that he never read an entire book in his life, so it wouldn’t surprise me if he didn’t bother to read the agreement he signed. He’s a bit on the stupid side.

      • Marty McKee - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:03 PM

        You’re forgetting that Rose and Giamatti made a deal that Rose would be reinstated after a certain period, but Fay Vincent reneged on it after Giamatti’s death. And the fact that there was no “ban” on Hall of Fame enshrinement when Rose “accepted” the ban.

        Obviously, Rose would never have accepted anything if he had known A) it would actually be a lifetime ban and B) it would keep him out of the HoF.

      • fanofevilempire - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:13 PM

        stex52,so you really believe Pete accepted a lifetime ban just like that, because you would do that.what is the reasoning of accepting a ban from MLB, he could have just said fuck you, there must be a good reason for it, like maybe being told Pete accept this and we will explore lifting the ban, could that possibly be true, you seem to know.

      • Old Gator - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:04 PM

        Marty – the agreement stated that Rose could apply for reinstatement. It did not guarantee that he would be reinstated. I’m pretty sure he did apply once – I don’t know if he has bothered to since then. I see nothing in the agreement that keeps him from re-applying any number of times.

      • stex52 - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:10 PM

        Honestly, evilfan, I really don’t care what backroom arrangements he thought he had when he agreed to the ban. Not very interested.

        But if you think he gambled just once and not for years, that is pretty delusional.

      • rje49 - Aug 13, 2013 at 6:59 PM

        Just wondering; does the famous “No Gambling” sign in every major league clubhouse say underneath, “penalty for violation is lifetime ban”? Second, is there also a sign in every clubhouse saying “No steroids use allowed”?

      • raysfan1 - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:54 PM

        The answers to your questions are yes and no.
        Baseball rule 21(d) is posted in every major and minor league clubhouse. The rule says: “Any player, umpire, or club or league official or employee, who shall bet any sum whatsoever upon any baseball game in connection with which the bettor has a duty to perform shall be declared permanantly ineligible.”

        There is no room for quibbling, and no escaping it for the person who gets caught.

        No, the PED rule is not posted.

    • chiadam - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:50 PM

      Apparently it does.

    • fanofevilempire - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:09 PM

      people commit murder and sometimes they are freed from jail after serving a sentence, but gamble on baseball and you never get a second chance, makes sense.

      • clemente2 - Aug 14, 2013 at 2:16 AM

        I was going to post a rational response, but I read evil’s post again, and conceded it would do no good.

    • jfk69 - Aug 13, 2013 at 8:33 PM

      On February 4, 1991, the Hall of Fame voted formally to exclude individuals on the permanently ineligible list from being inducted into the Hall of Fame by way of the Baseball Writers Association of America vote (though it was already an “unwritten” rule prior). Rose is the only living member of the ineligible list. Players who were not selected by the BBWAA could be considered by the Veterans Committee in the first year after they would have lost their place on the Baseball Writers’ ballot. Under the Hall’s rules, players may appear on the ballot for only fifteen years, beginning five years after they retire. Had he not been banned from baseball, Rose’s name could have been on the writers’ ballot beginning in 1992 and ending in 2006.[26] He would have been eligible for consideration by the Veterans Committee in 2007, but did not appear on the ballot.[27] In 2008 the Veterans Committee barred players and managers on the ineligible list from consideration

  2. claybrn - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    If we work off the assumption that Rose would be elected on the merits of his playing career (vs his managing career), why not let him be on the ballot? His transgressions occurred as a manager, not as a player…and it seems disingenuous to keep Pete Rose (the player) off the ballot. Otherwise, a player shouldn’t be able to be elected if his managing career is still active.

    if he gets elected put a statement on his plaque that he was banned from baseball.

    • agelardi - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:38 PM

      You said what I logged in to say. His HOF worth accomplishments happened as a player, put him in as a player.

      • heyblueyoustink - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:46 PM

        I said this last week:

        I don’t care if you don’t have a ceremony.

        I don’t care if you asterisk the hell out of him.

        I don’t care if you put a picture of Joseph Stalin above his bust.

        He belongs in, or at least the chance to be voted in, especially considering the sordid nature of some of the other characters in the HOF.

        Just one person’s opinion, but the grudge has gone on for long enough.

      • clemente2 - Aug 14, 2013 at 2:19 AM

        It is not a grudge. It is the rules of MLB and of the Hall. There is no mystery here. The mystery is why Grich, Whitaker, and Raines are not in the Hall.

    • jm91rs - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:43 PM

      He also bet on baseball as a player/manager, so that kind of hurts your theory. I think he should be in the Hall but not back in any sort of MLB related job. I’ll be there if he ever gets in, because of what he did on the field, not because of his poor character.

      • fanofevilempire - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:15 PM

        jm91rs, good argument.

    • raysfan1 - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:48 PM

      It’s the HoF’s rule–if you are banned from the game, you are not eligible for the HoF. It makes no distinction as to what role the individual had when banned. It was an unwritten rule until the Rose case came up and is now a written rule because of him.

    • reds37win - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:47 PM

      Mostly agree. If Rose were to be elected to the HoF, his entire career should go with him, including his accomplishments and his disgraces. It’s the Hall of Fame, not the Hall of Saints.

  3. stex52 - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:37 PM

    I liked Morgan as a player. He had to become a sports commentator for me to realize what a dunce he is.

  4. jm91rs - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:40 PM

    So Morgan is supporting Rose simply because he was a member of the Big Red Machine? It has nothing to do with those 4256 career hits and all of the other accolades?
    I dislike Joe Morgan the analyst as much as the next guy, but he played with Hall of Famers Johnny Bench and Tony Perez. He played for Hall of Fame manager Sparky Anderson. Davey Concepcion was a great player, border line HOF, and George Foster was one of the most feared right-handed sluggers of the 70s. He has every right to talk up some VERY good players, these are not just some schmucks that happened to be Reds.

    • cohnjusack - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      Best players of the 70s using fWAR

      1. Joe Morgan
      2. Johnny Bench
      4. Pete Rose
      16. Tony Perez
      24. George Foster
      33. Dave Concepcion

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:26 PM

      Seriously? You stole someone’s handle, made a slight modification, and now you are trying to pawn yourself off as them? Sad Brah. Real sad.

    • cohnjusack - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:45 PM

      This would be offensive, but it’s clear given the context that you can’t possibly even know what Uncle Tom means.

    • historiophiliac - Aug 13, 2013 at 10:06 PM

      Look here you little slapdick pretender. There is one — and only one — historiophiliac on here. You do NOT have what it takes to fill that bra. You get me, you offensive jerk? Take your little trolly ass and keep walking. Isn’t anybody here who thinks you’re clever.

  5. cur68 - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:44 PM

    Craig, is that a shot at the “Compare Murderers/Ballplayers” meme? If so, you’re doing it wrong. I don’t believe that D.B Cooper killed anyone.

    • chacochicken - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:54 PM

      Strictly speaking we don’t know who the Zodiac is/was. What if it was Cooper? Crazy huh? Actually scratch that, it was Dick Van Dyke.,33318/

      • peymax1693 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:23 PM

        Can Dick Van Dyke prove that he wasn’t the Zodiac killer?
        Even more, can Dick Van Dyke prove that he wasn’t on PED’s while filming Mary Poppins?
        For the record, I’m just asking.

      • jm91rs - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:37 PM

        That entire chimney sweep crew was on something.

      • cur68 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:38 PM

        I think these questions must be asked. Anyhow, lets just ban Van Dyke from the HOF, eh? Don’t wanna risk the sanctity of the Hall.

      • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:50 PM

        That is literally unbelievable.

      • cur68 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:54 PM

        Its on the interwebs, yahmule! It MUST be true!

  6. chiadam - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:52 PM

    Where is the rest of the interview? I assume Morgan closed it by discussing how great Joe Morgan is.

  7. pftalk - Aug 13, 2013 at 12:56 PM

    Anyone else not able to stomach Craig’s opinion pieces since Braun’s suspension? I keep reading them because I think there might be something worth while but I get the impression there is a separate heaven for Craig and that’s located on God’s knob.

    • cur68 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:55 PM

      Do you want a refund for the blog? If so, apply to the comptroller at “”.

      • pftalk - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:09 PM

        ….and cue the trolls

    • pauleee - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:16 PM

      Cur68 is a regular poster here. You, on the other hand, have PFT right in your user name.
      Go football somewhere else.

      • pftalk - Aug 13, 2013 at 6:01 PM

        Yea, i can see why football is superior to baseball…..starting with the fans and bloggers.

    • clemente2 - Aug 14, 2013 at 2:24 AM

      pftalk–It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear an idiot than to open it and remove all doubt.

  8. Ralph - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:01 PM

    Say what you will about Joe, but at least he’s cosistent.

    • Joe - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:10 PM

      ^^ Comment of the Day! ^^

  9. mjd1972 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:09 PM

    Rose bet on baseball in 1985 and 1986, when he was an active player. John Dowd documented it. Before anyone starts whining about the veracity of the Dowd Report, remember that Pete himself thought that selling autographed copies of the report was a wonderful idea.
    Pete bet on his own team and got caught. There is only one punishment, with no wiggle room. The over-compensation with PED users seems to be making a martyr of him. He is not getting in the HOF anytime soon.

  10. daveitsgood - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:24 PM

    Appropos of nothing, isn’t Joe Morgan on the veterans committee that votes on players for the hall who are beyond their 15 year ballot limit? Shouldn’t he recuse himself from votes that involve his former teammates? This is assuming there have been meetings and votes for his former teammates, but it sounds like a blatant conflict of interest should he be involved in a vote regarding any of his former teammates, especially with his known penchant for pimping all of his former teammates and how they should all be HOF’ers.

    • jm91rs - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      Is there anyone other than Concepcion and Rose that Morgan has said should be a HOF’er? Because the Rose debate is never going to end, and he’s not the only person in the world that thinks Concepcion had a good enough career. All of these guys are buddy buddy with the former greats, they can’t recuse themselves every time, nor should they.

  11. schmedley69 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:26 PM

    There is no stronger bond than the bond between two Aqua Velva men.

    • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:03 PM

      That commercial implies Pete was able to steal second off Johnny Bench pretty easily. I call bullshit.

      • cohnjusack - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:52 PM

        Rose was 0 for 1 in his career running against Johnny Bench

        BUT, he did once swipe three bases off the Reds when Bench had an off day and Don Wener was behind the plate
        Which, after seeing him run in that commercial, is an astounding feat.

      • yahmule - Aug 13, 2013 at 5:59 PM

        He looked like he was carrying the sack of flour they threw at him @ Shea.

  12. jm91rs - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:43 PM

    Can anyone tell me if Selig or some future commissioner can just re-instate him with the stroke of the pen? I assume so, but I’m curious if he can technically do that.

  13. thomas844 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:51 PM

    Did you really just compare a guy who made a few stupid bets to a trio of serial killers?

    • cur68 - Aug 13, 2013 at 1:56 PM

      psst: D. B. Cooper was a robber/hostage taker. He didn’t kill anyone.

      • nolanwiffle - Aug 13, 2013 at 2:28 PM

        From Todd Snider, the man who brought us “America’s favorite Pasttime” (the Dock Ellis song), there is also this……called “D.B. Cooper”

        D.B. Cooper was 43 when we first heard his name
        47 miles away from where he fell down to his fame
        He told me that the hardest part
        Wasn’t really jumping out of that plane
        It was spending the night
        Watching those lights
        Shine through the pouring rain

        They had a manhunt that next morning
        Like nothing I had ever seen
        I was only eight years old at the time
        Watching on the TV screen
        They were saying he was never going to make it now
        Now the daylight had set in
        But later that night
        They were shining lights
        Down on the mountain again

        Not far away from the City of Roses
        They all watched those lights up through the rain
        For D.B. Cooper

        Well, the cops blocked off all the exit roads
        And they turned out all of the hounds
        They even dragged the river up a couple of times
        To see if he had drowned
        With all those men working overtime
        They swore they would bring him down
        But a parachute and a few hundred dollars
        Was all that they ever found

        Not far away from the City of Roses
        They all watched those lights up through the rain

        Now, some people say that he died up there
        Somewhere in the rain in the wind
        Other people say that he got away
        But then his girlfriend did him in
        The law men say if he is out there
        Some day they’re going to drag him in
        But as for me, I hope they never see
        D.B. Cooper again

        Not far away from the City of Roses
        Lights shine from a house out in the rain
        It was D.B. Cooper
        Drinking champagne

        BTW – see this dude in concert when you can, he’s a great entertainer.

      • thomas844 - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:13 PM

        That still doesn’t make it a fair comparison.

      • cur68 - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:25 PM

        Didn’t say it did. Merely pointing out that Cooper wasn’t a killer. So its 2 killers and a robber/hijacker.

        Regardless of any of this, Cooper’s story is fascinating reading.

      • stlouis1baseball - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:29 PM

        He (D.B. Cooper) also apparently had an enormous set of balls.
        I am talking testicles of gargantuan proportions.

      • cur68 - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:47 PM

        Natch re. nuts: Its widely believed that he was a Canadian.

      • stlouis1baseball - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:14 PM

        Oh I wouldn’t doubt he was Canadian for one minute Cur. The crazy bastard.

  14. kane337 - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:09 PM

    Pete Rose belongs in the Hall of Fame

  15. anxovies - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:20 PM

    Uh, Craig, a little over the top with the Ted Bundy/Cooper/Zodiac thing. After all, we are talking about something that is basically a game played for entertainment and that many people think is trivial. Having said that, I never saw the rationale in a lifetime ban for gambling on your own team and permitting a group of players who cheated the opposing players and fans, the league and all of the players that came before them and are in the record books to keep their jobs. If Rose is banned from baseball then present players like Braun and former players like McGwire should not be allowed to participate. And for those of you who doubt that Rose only placed bets on his own team to win, you never saw the guy play. And I’m a Yankee fan.

  16. mattoneal - Aug 13, 2013 at 3:44 PM

    To everybody saying that Rose would not have accepted a ban if he had known the details. I don’t get it. Is it like this:

    MLB/Commissioner: I’m sorry, Pete, you’re banned for life.

    Pete Rose: No I’m not.

    I understand he signed some papers when he was banned. But can’t an organization ban someone without them agreeing to it?

    • lawson1974 - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:21 PM

      He could have appealed, fought the ban, sued in court, etc.
      He did none of those things and signed the paperwork because he thought he would serve some time and the get to be readmitted.

      • jfk69 - Aug 13, 2013 at 8:27 PM

        Just before he cut the deal he was in court trying to block Giamatti.
        Rose continued to deny all of the accusations against him and refused to appear at a hearing with Giamatti on the matter. He filed a lawsuit in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court alleging that the Commissioner had prejudged the case and could not provide a fair hearing. A Cincinnati judge issued a temporary restraining order to delay the hearing, but Giamatti fought to have the case moved to Federal Court. The Commissioner prevailed in that effort, after which he and Rose entered settlement negotiations.

        On August 24, 1989, Rose voluntarily accepted a permanent place on baseball’s ineligible list.[20] Rose accepted that there was a factual reason for the ban; in return, Major League Baseball agreed to make no formal finding with regard to the gambling allegations. According to baseball’s rules, Rose could apply for reinstatement in one year but Bart Giamatti said, “There is absolutely no deal for reinstatement

      • lawson1974 - Aug 13, 2013 at 11:06 PM

        He settled, but if he thought the ban would be permanent, there would have been zero incentive to settle no matter where the case would be heard.

        He could have drug it out for years in court, but settled because he believed it would be a temporary ban.

  17. lawson1974 - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    I will just add that Lawson Lambert thinks Pete Rose should be in the Hall. So does his brother Landon, his father Daryle, and his friend Dave Butsch.

    And so does a large majority of fans whenever they are polled on the question.

  18. billymc75 - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:28 PM

    finally! Joe is right things he did as a player are separate from things he did as a coach

  19. tbutler704 - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    Joe Morgan was better on ESPN Sunday Night than Jon Kruk or Curt Schilling, both of whom should switch to decaf coffee or lay off the candy bars before coming on TV sounding like they’re double parked.

    ESPN is wretched.

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:38 PM

      I think Schilling and Kruk do a great job. I especially liked Kruk’s frankness about his battle with testicular cancer and his very fleeting consideration to take steroids.
      Dude called out Nelson Cruz like no other.
      In a nutshell…
      He said he decided against it (without even much thought) and he was fighting cancer!
      So how can Cruz decide to do so “supposedly” to help fight an infection.
      Very candid.

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 13, 2013 at 4:39 PM

      Aside from that…I agree.
      ESPN is definitely wretched.

  20. multiplemiggs - Aug 13, 2013 at 5:17 PM

    I have a way to get him in the Hall in an instant, and his gambling issues would be ENTIRELY forgotton about. How you ask? SAY YOU’RE GAY! And theyll put you in in a heartbeat! The gambling? They wont even remember it happened.

    • clemente2 - Aug 14, 2013 at 2:30 AM

      Please ban this douche.

  21. missingdiz - Aug 13, 2013 at 5:38 PM

    Sometimes all this armchair moralizing makes me want to hurl (and by that I don’t mean pitch). I don’t think many people want an answer because they enjoy second-guessing so much. But just in case, the solution is to put everybody in the Hall whose record playing major-league (incl., Negro League) baseball was good enough–that leaves plenty to argue about. At each exhibit the rest of the story should be presented; in controversial cases, maybe with a “pro and con” approach. Baseball is not a religion and the Hall is not a church. Let’ try to grow up.

  22. missingdiz - Aug 13, 2013 at 5:44 PM

    Oh, one other thing. Craig, usually I appreciate what you write. But this time you slandered Joe Morgan. Lots of people got tired of him as announcer, but I know of no reason to trash his integrity. He’s not backing Rose just because Rose paid for the Reds. He’s backing Rose because of 4256 hits, 746 doubles, etc.
    And I’m not, nor have I ever been, a Reds fan. Or a Rose fan, either.

  23. missingdiz - Aug 13, 2013 at 5:45 PM

    Oops, I meant “played for the Reds.”

  24. joerevs300 - Aug 13, 2013 at 6:39 PM

    What I find hilarious (and ironic) about this whole thing is that, guaranteed, there are players in all professional sports that are gambling. It isn’t hard. There are all kinds of websites out there. It’s not like it was when Rose was gambling. And they are making major money.

    NBA teams tank every single year to get draft picks, does anyone honestly think there aren’t guys betting on those games???

    Yet, we have CLEAR people who have used PED’s, broken some of the thought to be “untouchable” records, who Craig is clamoring to be in the HOF because there are plenty of others in there who already used PED’s, and that’s OK. They should be in.

    Somewhere there is some seriously broken logic when one person is a record holder and will never have access to the HOF and another person clearly cheated, holds the same records, and the people who won’t vote them in are decried (or worse) from keeping them out.

    Betting on professional sports by professional athletes happens EVERY SINGLE CONTEST.

    If you can ban people for life for that, then you need to ban people for failing a drug test too, not just in MLB but across the 4 major professional sports.

  25. jfk69 - Aug 13, 2013 at 8:22 PM

    Morgan further states, If I was a betting man I would lay even money on Rose making the Hall someday and 10 to 1 Shoeless Joe never gets in.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. D. Wright (2965)
  2. M. Teixeira (2435)
  3. G. Stanton (2399)
  4. H. Olivera (2359)
  5. Y. Cespedes (2325)