Pete Rose’s Ex-Wife Claims He’s Still a High Stakes Gambler

Pete Rose Sports Betting Scandal

Pete Rose received a lifetime ban from baseball in 1989 on suspicions he bet on MLB games while a manager.

Pete Rose’s estranged wife claims Major League Baseball’s all-time hits leader and most infamous sports bettor remains a “high stakes gambler”. Carol Rose made the allegations in a court filing during an attempt to settle their divorce proceedings stemming from a 2011 divorce.

Pete Rose is the legendary baseball player who received a lifetime ban from Major League Baseball after it was revealed he “probably” bet on MLB baseball games while a manager for the Cincinnati Reds. Nearly thirty years after the scandal first came to light, the Pete Rose gambling controversy causes passionate debates about the ban, Hall of Fame voting, and sports betting in general. In fact, this week’s decision before the US Supreme Court on the PASPA federal ban on sports betting can be traced directly to the Pete Rose scandal.

If Carol Rose is correct, then Pete Rose still deals with the same issues which caused his fall from baseball grace. TMZ published the allegations based on continuing divorce proceedings in Los Angeles Superior Court. Carol Rose claims that her estranged husband still makes more than a million dollars a year, including revenue sources from his MLB pension, endorsements, and autograph signings.

The filings came 7 years after the couple’s divorce, because Carol Rose was asking the court to finalize Pete Rose’s financial status, so a settlement could be finalized.

Debts to IRS, Casinos

Carol Rose claims Pete Rose continued to gamble large sums of money, despite being banned from Major League Baseball for life for gambling on baseball games in which he was involved. Rose’s former wife also claimed Pete Rose owes large sums of money to casinos’ sportsbooks, as well as the Internal Revenue Service.

The picture painted by Carol Rose’s lawyers describe a problem gambler. When gripped in compulsive behavior, Pete Rose makes wagers despite a pattern of losing money on his habit. Pete Rose has made counter-claims against his former wife, though.

“Unreasonable” Behavior

In March 2018, Pete Rose claimed that Carol Rose is “unreasonable”. The baseball legend said in court filings they separated in 2009, about the time he proposed to Kiana Kim, the 38-year old South Korean model and actress who is his longtime girlfriend.

An attorney for Pete Rose said in a motion to have the divorce finally resolved, “The petitioner (Pete Rose) is 77 years old and maintaining the status quo is causing both parties emotional strain and pressure.”

Pete Rose: Lifetime Ban

Pete Rose’s Major League Baseball career spanned the years 1963 to 1986, when he retired with a Major League record 4,256 hits. Having a thousand more hits than a whole litany of Hall of Fame players should have made Pete Rose a first-ballot Hall of Famer.

Instead, it was actions from Pete Rose’s career as a manager that caused his ban from baseball. From 1984 to 1989, Pete Rose was the manager of the Cincinnati Reds. (He was a player-manager for three seasons.) During his last couple of years as the Reds manager, those close to MLB began to whisper that Pete Rose was betting on games.

It is legal for baseball players to bet on other sports, even if it is a bad look for the sport. It is even legal, if unethical, to bet on MLB baseball games. Pete Rose may have crossed the line and bet on Cincinnati Reds games in which he managed. Rose disputed those claims, though some friends claimed he wagered on Reds’ games, but always bet on the Reds to win — though even that would have been problematic. Even if one assumed Rose always bet on his team, managerial decisions could be thrown into doubt based on the needs of his sports bet.

The Dowd Report

Eventually, famed lawyer John Dowd (Keating Five, Russian Collusion) was hired as Special Counsel to the MLB commissioners Peter Ueberroth and, later, A. Bartlett Giamatti, to investigate claims that Pete Rose bet on baseball. This led to the publishing of the Dowd Report in March 1989.

John Dowd found that Pete Rose “no evidence was discovered that Rose bet against the Reds”, but said in a 2002 interview that Pete Rose “probably” bet on Reds games. Despite the lack of a smoking gun, A. Bartlett Giamatti suspended Pete Rose from baseball for life. Giamatti died within months of the decision and was replaced by Faye Vincent, a close friend. The continuing suspension of Pete Rose became a cause to uphold the decision of Vincent’s departed friend. Despite Pete Rose’s attempts to be reinstated over the years, he remains banned for life.

Pete Rose Scandal’s Impact

The Pete Rose betting scandal has had a tremendous impact on baseball and on US sports betting. In the wake of the Pete Rose scandal, the various sports leagues successfully lobbied in the early 1990s for a federal ban on sports betting. The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) of 1992 was a direct result of the Pete Rose scandals.

The debate over Pete Rose’s actions continues to this day. Though the 1919 Black Sox scandal led to the ban of Shoeless Joe Jackson and several other members of the Chicago White Sox, the ban was considered final and was not played out in the sports media for the next several decades. The sports media was not the same as it is today. The question of the lifetime ban and Pete Rose’s worthiness to be in the Baseball Hall of Fame remains a hot-topic debate nearly 30 years after the ban.

In fact, Pete Rose’s barring from the Hall of Fame has had an impact on players from the Steroids Era. It can be argued, if MLB’s all-time hits leader is banned from Cooperstown, then the many players whose stats were affected by alleged steroids use (such as Barry Bonds, Mark McGuire, Roger Clemens) also should be banned.

Upcoming US Supreme Court Decision

The impact on sports betting continues to this day. This week, the US Supreme Court will decide on the fate of the PASPA federal ban on sports. If the Supreme Court rules in favor of the sports association, PASPA could remain the law of the land for years to come. If the Supreme Court rules on behalf of New Jersey, then the ban which came in the wake of the Pete Rose betting scandal finally might be put to rest.

The Pete Rose Saga appears as if it could continue for some time.