Former Dodgers Manager Tommy Has Stern Views On Pete Rose

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

One of the biggest scandals in the history of baseball happened in 1989, when Pete Rose was banned from the sport for life after he was found guilty of betting on baseball games, which meant he was ineligible to be elected into the Hall of Fame.

Rose, whose 4,256 career hits are an MLB record, has attempted for more than 20 years to get that ruling overturned. Along the way and with the passing of time, many have voiced their support for letting Rose back into baseball.

Former Los Angeles Dodgers legend Tommy Lasorda, however, is not among those people. In an interview with 120 sports, the 87 year old was asked whether he thought Rose deserved to be elected into the Hall of Fame. To that, Lasorda replied:

I think he should not allow [Rose] to be in the Hall of Fame because of what he done.”

Lasorda was then asked if he would at least support letting Rose back into the game in another capacity, to which Lasorda also shot down:

No good, no good. Look at those guys, look at the [1919 American League Champion] White Sox. They got suspended from baseball, never allowed to come back again because they were set up to lose the game.”

Eight players from the 1919 White Sox — nicknamed the “Black Sox” — were banned from baseball for life after they were found guilty of intentionally losing World Series games in exchange for money from gamblers. Among those players was “Shoeless” Joe Jackson, whose .356 career batting average is third-highest all-time.

Rose’s offense was far less severe, as he was never found to lose any games intentionally. Many believe he has a better chance to be allowed back into the game now that Rob Manfred is the new commissioner of baseball.


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  1. I agree with Tommy…..gambling in any form has been against the rules forever…

  2. Gambling is so horrible, that one of Time Warner’s and MLB’s sponsor is Draft Kings.
    What hypocrisy.
    Has Tommy Lasorda mentioned that?

    1. Draftkings (or fantasy sports) is considered a game of skill. While some might consider it gambling the federal gaming commission does not.

      1. Call it what they will, it is gambling under the guise of some friendly online game. It’s semantics.
        Blackjack and craps are games of skill too.
        Tommy’s hypocrisy is like a Magic Johnson complaining that Dodger games can’t bee seen by 70% of Los Angeles.

        1. yep, people can loop hole it how they want, all this shit paid Fantasy sports leagues is gambling. Anytime you put down money based on an outcome of something, its gambling. Its stupid that he’s still banned.

          1. It’s gambling on his own sport. If he was betting on poker or horses or even college baseball, there would be no tainting the game. If he bets on his own team, he has an incentive to keep a pitcher in an inning longer to help his bet, but that might not help the team in the long run.

            Betting on MLB has to be permanently toxic. There are a bazillion other gambling outlets and he KNEW he was breaking the one sacred rule… but he thought he was above it.

            Letting him back would be a very dangerous precedent.

        2. Blackjack and craps are not games of skill. They’re games of chance. You’re playing against the house, whereas Draft Kings is playing against other people.

  3. Problem with Lasodra’s argument is that he’s comparing the 1919 Sox, who’s player’s actually threw baseball games. (remember the owner with held bonuses from some of those players), with a guy who bet on baseball games. There isn’t a shred of evidence Rose ever threw a game. Though I’m not that naïve either tough call either way.

  4. Tommy never liked Pete Rose,probably due to all those intense pennant races with the Reds,when they were bitter division rivals back in the 70’s and early 80’s.This is just Tommy’s opinion. He’s entitled to it. It seems like Rose’s old teammate,Johnny Bench, feels as Lasorda does. I’m pulling for Rose,to make into the Hall Of Fame !

    1. I really never liked Pete Rose, but I believe the players that did steroids, hurt baseball and the baseball records more! I don’t think Rose ever betted against his own team. There is another way of looking at the Pete Rose case! Look how baseball treated the Josh Hamilton case! Isn’t gambling considered an addiction? And isn’t addictions considered a disease?

      1. Michelle, it makes no difference. He bet on baseball, and that rule has been on the books for close to 100 years. The Black Sox scandal almost killed the game. It was saved by Babe Ruth. Steroids and drugs are a modern invention. Baseball had no anti drug rules in place, so guys tried to get an edge. They hurt themselves more than the did the game….a black eye, yes,…..but they are the ones paying the price for cheating…so far no PED user has been close to getting in the HOF. The game has evolved, but betting on games makes you a mark to do something that might cause your team to lose…like the basketball scandal in the 50’s……Rose bet on games…period……

      2. Michele After the strike and lock out baseball was struggling. Fans had moved on to other sports. Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa had a season that was the most incredible in all of baseball history with their HR race. They brought fans back. Mark never made any secret he was taking a certain substance. Remember steroids do not allow you to hit HR’s they allow you to recover from injury. I will always believe that McGuire and Sosa both should be in the HOF> I also believe that Pete Rose should be in the hall. As a Dodger fan my entire life I hated the Big Red Machine. But i admired how incredible some of their players were and Rose was one of the greatest of all. The HOF should be for Baseball Performance on the Field. There are some people in the HOF that are not of sterling character but that is not what it is about. And yes the Dodgers and Major League Baseball are being hypocritical in endorsing the Draft Kings and other Fantasy Leagues and games of chance. If you are putting money down and you can “win” it is gambling. I am not against any of it I am just in awe of the semantics used to not admit to the fact they are promoting gambling.

      3. @Michelle Bingo, like Chris Rock said Baseball is its own worst enemy, too much hypocrisy in Baseball, too many old guys won’t let the sport breathe, most of the problems are because guys feel becAUSE ITS ALWAYS BEEN THAT WAY its needs to stay that way, #2 problem, Morals clauses??? please not only are there racists and alcoholics in the Hall but drug addicts too(Bennies/speed, etc) 60s/70s/80s

      4. The steroids lengthened careers and boosted salaries. That was the payment the players sold their HOF bronze for.

        It’s not about addiction or gambling or whoring or barroom brawls.

        The context of the Baseball HOF is vis a vis baseball. He could bet the ponies or play poker or have a hotel full of whores. He bet on baseball games where he had an influence in the outcome or could have played a player differently than he would have if he didn’t have money riding on the game. That and only that is the unforgivable crime keeping him out of the HOF.

        If a HOF inductee, 10 years after admission, pulled a Ted Kennedy leaving a woman to die in the bottom of a river, it doesn’t merit being un-inducted.

        If Rose bet on little league games or college baseball games or even some adult softball league, it would have no impact on MLB. What he did was taint real MLB games with gambling. THAT is unforgivable.

  5. if anything Rose should be and is in the organized crime betting hall of fame, more than likely he didn’t snitch on a bunch of great players who equally gained or plotted in schemes. That is why he will get no leniency. Imagine someone like Rose coming out in cooperation with all the RICO and American Mafia crime investigations during the pentito trials. Too many powerful people can be affected by Pete Rose’s presumed credibility within our society, because of this his reinstatement will never be considered practically.

  6. I think since they have a morals clause then Ty Cobb should be out for murder plus there are others that should be out. Rose did his gambling when he was a manager not as a player he should be allowed in as a player but band from holding a job in baseball because he can’t play any more and his gambling happened when he held a management position.

    1. Rose gambled when he was playing too. Look the guys biggest sin is that he did not own up to what he did, whether or not he bet on the Reds does not matter. betting on the game is specifically against the rules, It has not a damn thing to do with ethics, There is a sign on the club house wall of every major league club house….NO GAMBLING allowed. Period. He also lied to the commissioner. And the biggest thing….He ACCEPTED the lifetime ban……end of story. Now….In my opinion,. Pete was a great player….for what he did on the field he should be in…But I also think he should not be able to capitalize on that…..And since it is a lifetime ban….put him in after he dies….

      1. If the biggest sin is not coming clean, then Lyin Braun and A-Roid should not be playing…

      2. You never assessed the fact that gambling is an addiction! Also, addictions are considered a disease! The fact that Pete Rose lives in Las Vegas today, shows that Rose is addicted to gambling! Didn’t an arbiter just rule in favor for Josh Hamilton, because he has this disease of addiction! Back when the Black Sox had their scandal, addiction was not considered a disease, and many of these players did this, just to get back at their owner! They had an agenda! The way Pete played, I know he didn’t bet against his own team! You pointed out that because Rose lied to the commissioner,that was a good enough reason to have Pete banned, but that’s what addicts do! Addicts lie!

      3. It’s NO GAMBLING on baseball. If Rose was betting the horses, he’d have been inducted in the HOF decades ago.

        His artifacts can be in the HOF, but he doesn’t deserve to be on the wall in bronze to set an example.

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