Exclusive: Pete Rose speaks to SN.ca

September 15, 2009, 5:12 AM

Sportsnet.ca – In an exclusive interview with Sportsnet on Wednesday, an angry Pete Rose opened up on his lack of a second chance and on Bud Selig, saying he will be known as “the commissioner that was on duty when steroids took over, just like I am going to be the baseball player that gambled.”

Rose was in Concord, Ont., for an autograph session and sat down for an interview with Sportsnet. When asked about having not yet been reinstated by Major League Baseball, he laid the blame squarely at the feet of Selig.

“It’s strange, it’s one man, it’s Bud Selig. You know Bud, get a life. You give everybody else a second chance, and to be honest, fans have given [Selig] another chance,” said Rose. “All you hear now is he’s gonna clean up all the steroids; well all the steroids started on his watch, so he should clean them up.”

Rose, who has been banned since 1989, said that if he had committed a crime other than gambling, he would have already received a second chance.

“The strange thing about my case is, I seem to be the only guy from America that can’t get a second chance,” Rose added. “It’s sad to say this, but if I had been on drugs, I’d have gotten a second chance, if I had been an alcoholic, I’d have gotten a second chance, if I had been a spousal beater, I’d have gotten a second chance, but I chose the vice that baseball just can’t stand, gambling.”

Rose questions whether what he did was as serious as the damage those accused of taking steroids have done to the game of baseball.

“I was wrong, I bet on my own team to win every night,” Rose said. “That’s what I did. That’s how bad a guy I was. I had so much faith in my players, it was like my sons playing for me. I didn’t bet on them two nights a week, I bet on them every night, [and] I did everything in my power to win the game every night.”

Rose also had something to say to all those people who feel he has let them down.

“People today say, ‘well, he’s not sorry he did that.’ Let me explain something, I got kicked out of the game I love, it cost me over $50 million, and I get a kick out of people saying I hurt them,” said Rose. “I hurt my family and myself more than anybody and you just won’t get me to believe that I hurt baseball more than what’s going on in baseball today [with steroids].”

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