Rose is also a convicted tax cheat, adulterer(sp?), and a greenie user. And more, I'm sure. I got over having him as my boyhood baseball hero about 30 years ago when he left the Reds for more money in Philadelphia.
Yet, I will still take Pete in the HOF, seven days a week, and twice on Sunday. He is in the top of numerous career hitting categories, won batting titles, ROY, an MVP, three world series rings (two for the Reds), and has career stats that make many other Hall of Famers pale in comparison. Did you know Rose batted .321 in 300 post-season plate appearances? That he played in 17 All Star games, and started at 5 different positions? That he won the Gehrig Award, the Hutch Award, and the Clemente Award? See Baseball Reference.com. Most of all, I was lucky enough to see him play. The man hustled, and wanted to win, more than any player I have seen. Relentless.
I also am ok with Rose not ever having a job in MLB again. But this is a lot more than just a Cincinnati thing. The HOF has never been about character. If it is, why is Ty cobb in there? He was actually accused of fixing baseball games, and was only 'acquitted' when he intimidated his accuser into not showing up for the hearing. Other Ty Cobb notes of interest, from Wikipedia:
Cobb climbed into the stands and attacked the handicapped Lueker, who due to an industrial accident had lost all of one hand and three fingers on his other hand. When onlookers shouted at Cobb to stop because the man had no hands, Cobb reportedly replied, "I don't care if he has no feet!"Cobb once slapped a black elevator operator for being "uppity." When a black night watchman intervened, Cobb pulled out a knife and stabbed him. The matter was later settled out of court.That last quote summarizes how I feel about Pete Rose and the HOF. I really don't think it is right to keep Rose off the ballots. If voters don't pick him, so be it. But at least let him have his chance....A personal achievement came in February, 1936, when the first Hall of Fame election results were announced. Cobb had been named on 222 of 226 ballots, outdistancing Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson and Walter Johnson, the only others to earn the necessary 75% of votes to be elected in that first year. His 98.2 percentage stood as the record until Tom Seaver received 98.8% of the vote in 1992 (Nolan Ryan and Cal Ripken have also surpassed Cobb, with 98.79% and 98.53% of the votes, respectively). Those incredible results show that although many people disliked him personally, they respected the way he played and what he accomplished.