blogging Phillies baseball and the home of Phillies Talk Podcast by Rich Baxter
blogging Phillies baseball and the home of Phillies Talk Podcast by Rich Baxter

Pete Rose with a new book, “Play Hungry – The Making Of A Baseball Player”

Pete Rose has a new book out from Penguin Press Books on 6/4/2019, and it’s a great summer read. Nothing really earth shattering on the current state of the MLB or the commish from Pete in this book, maybe he should have added some of that to get this book some attention.

No, this is a book about what it takes to be a ball player, it’s not easy and Pete is telling you that you have to play hungry. That was one thing he always did, you never got cheated when Pete was on the field in a baseball uniform. He was a player that always gave his all, was a team player and may have been one of the best players to play the game.

In this day of ‘pointing a finger’ at  players specifically Rose, he took the high road in this book and told you a little more about his journey to the big show on the baseball diamond. He’s kind of a very humble guy, despite what you may think of him with other things that some fans associate him with.

Ok, he bet on baseball, he’s been a player that has been raked over the coals so much, but one thing is for sure, he put in a career that probably won’t be equalled any time too soon in the MLB. Pete was close to being welcomed back into the baseball community, the Phillies were going to honor him, then all of a sudden a well timed barrage of accusations surfaced, causing the Phillies to back pedal under the pressure of social media and our society today. Has Rose been convicted of anything except in the world of social media?

How many players have done wrong over the past 25 years in baseball? Plenty, you’ve got Alex Rodriguez that is back talking about baseball on ESPN, Keith Hernandez works for the Mets broadcast team, he was on drugs in uniform on the field. Ryan Braun still plays (and makes millions) and he took steroids. Some players get a pass and some don’t. There are many more.

From the book:

  ” You have to want it, want it bad, but you also have to believe you can surprise yourself, amaze yourself ” 

Back to the book, as I was saying, Pete Rose explains some of the travels he took through the world of baseball. This is his type of story, a kid from Cincinnati that grew up on in the shadows of the baseball stadium in his hometown, and his dad who gave him a lot of his beliefs in life and playing the game of baseball hard. Yes, Rose knew he was good towards the end of his career, but he walked the walk, and talked the talk.

Not much about Philadelphia in this book, he could probably write a whole book about that portion of his career in baseball but we may never see it. Rose is now 78 years old, there was an aricle in the Philadelphia papers recently about Pete, it seemed like the typical smearing of Pete with plenty of references to him gambling. Sports gambling is legal in NJ now, it’s legal in PA also as well as Nevada. It’s a legal thing to do… wow, and even the MLB has embraced it when they think there is a big source of revenue.

From the book: After returning from the Japan Tour in 1978 and Pete declared his free agency:

“When we got back from Japan, we had lunch at the Holiday Inn, and I had nine Jeeps parked out front. I gave every coach a Jeep. I had the names on a piece of cardboard in every window.”

I’m not going to reveal too much more about the book, if you buy it, you’ll get an insight about the person that Rose is. It’s a great book for that. If you’re looking for the salacious and controversial – you won’t find that in this book.

Regardless of your opinion about Pete Rose, his play on the field stands out as one of the greatest players to ever play the game. In Philadelphia, without Pete Rose the team would not have won it’s first ever World Series in 1980 – that is for sure. It was a special time for Phillies fans if you were alive at that time, you got the real Pete Rose, the ball player. And of course if you saw him play for the Reds the same thing applied, one of the most exciting players ever.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *