Phillies cancel plans to honor Pete Rose after allegations he had sex with a minor during the 1970s
Pete Rose won’t be honored by the Philadelphia Phillies as planned this month after allegations surfaced this week that the former baseball great had a sexual relationship with a minor during the 1970s.
Fans had voted Rose as this season’s inductee onto the Phillies’ Wall of Fame, and the team had planned on inducting baseball’s all-time hits leader during an on-field ceremony on Aug. 12. Rose bobbleheads were scheduled to be distributed at the previous night’s game.
The Phillies and Rose decided together to call off those events, according to a statement released by the team Wednesday.
“While I am truly honored that Phillies fans voted for me to be this year’s Wall of Fame inductee I am concerned that other matters will overshadow the goodwill associated with alumni weekend, and I agree with the decision not to participate,” Rose said in the statement.
Rose won’t get a plaque on the Wall of Fame this year, but philly.com reports that the team hasn’t ruled out adding him in the future. In lieu of a ceremony honoring Rose on Aug. 12, the Phillies stated they will pay tribute to the 38 previous honorees.
Fans with tickets for either game can get a refund or exchange their tickets for any other game this season if they so choose.
In sworn testimony submitted to a court on Monday, a woman claimed to have started a sexual relationship with Rose, then a player for the Cincinnati Reds, when she was 14 or 15 years old and he was in his mid-30s. In a written statement accompanying the court filing, Rose acknowledged a sexual relationship with the woman but said he believed she was 16 at the time.
Rose, 76, can’t face criminal charges on these allegations because the statute of limitations has run out.
The testimony was presented by the defense in Rose’s federal lawsuit against attorney John Dowd for defamation. Dowd said during a 2015 radio interview that Rose committed statutory rape multiple times during spring training while he was a player.
It was Dowd’s investigation of Rose’s gambling habits — including the then-Reds manager betting on his own team — that led to the legendary player’s lifetime ban from the game.
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