Why would anyone be surprised that Pete Rose has better plans than attend the Cincinnati Reds’ ceremony Saturday night to commemorate the 25th anniversary of his breaking the all-time hits record?
Despite earlier reports, that’s not the case this weekend. At Cincinnati’s Great American Ball Park, the Reds’ great American dicotomy currently living in Sherman Oaks will be at a casino for a roast in his honor, but that will occur after Saturday’s game honoring his achievement.
Note, this Hollywood Casino where he’ll be participating in the event is about a half-hour away from Cincinnati, not the Hollywood Casino in Inglewood where Rose has appeared several times in his post-career for autograph signings.
Still, not a great PR move. But that’s Pete being Pete.
Last month, when the Baseball Reliquary tried to induct Rose into its Shrine of the Eternals — perhaps the only time Rose would be honored with a baseball-related Hall of Fame-sort-of induction — he couldn’t make it because of a committment to be in a Chicago suburb at an autograph show.
The logistics of this weekend’s ceremony, and Rose’s current lifetime ban from the make, also make his appearance problematic.
According to a story on MLB.com (linked here), the Reds have not previously been allowed to hold any on-field ceremonies to honor Rose or his achievements. MLB Commissioner Bud Selig had to approve this ceremony — it will occur prior to the game — and it will include a video to Rose, who will appear on the field and wave, but not allowed to speak.
He’ll be with former teammates Tony Perez, Ken Griffey Sr., Tommy Helms, Tom Browning and Cesar Geronimo. Johnny Bench? Must have other plans.
Sunday, Rose and his family will also be in attendance at the Reds’ series finale against Pittsburgh.
We side with Sports Illustrated’s Pete Daugherty, who wrote (linked here) that Rose’s decision “defies logic … And good judgment and, to most of us, good sense. And it never ends.”