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The poster who calls himself Fireladdie72 read the reports that commissioner Bud Selig may be reconsidering the lifetime ban on all-time hits leader Pete Rose and brought up a fair question:

Fireladdie's take: If Bud Selig re-instates Rose,will he re-instate the Black Sox team and since it will be O.K. to bet on baseball,will the players only be allowed to bet to win?

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Pete's reply: First of all, I don't really think Bud is seriously considering it. I believe he's letting the smoke clear after his friend Hank Aaron made those comments during the Hall of Fame festivities last weekend. Bud feels a great debt to his friend Bart Giamatti, who died shortly after making the gut-wrenching decision to ban Rose, who was a lot more popular at the time than he is now.

Now, for the more important part of your question. Rose broke the cardinal rule of baseball by betting on the Reds, so his ban is no great injustice, but there are some mitigating factors that allow you to believe what he did was not nearly as egregious as plan by some White Sox players to throw the World Series 90 years ago. He was not a player at the time (at least as far as the specific offenses that led to the original ban) and there is no evidence he ever tried to do anything but win every game he managed.

Does that absolve him of anything? Not really. What it does is cast him as a more sympathetic character than the guys who conspired with gamblers to lose a World Series for money. At least in my mind.

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