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Alternate history triggered by Pete Rose banishment

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  • Alternate history triggered by Pete Rose banishment

    Here's an alternate history I thought would be interesting

    In 1989, with the banning of Pete Rose from MLB for life, the players get upset that who they feel is the best baseball player of all time has been banished from the game and effectively blocked from Cooperstown.

    To protest this, the players call a strike the day after his banishment. Bart Giamatti stood firm until his death. Fay Vincent, who idolized him, also elects to uphold Rose's ban, keeping the strike going so long that the rest of the 1989 MLB season, including the postseason, is cancelled. No Earthquake Series.

    The strike carries over into May of 1990. CBS, who was to start televising MLB games that April, pressures Vincent to reinstate Rose so that players can get back to work and CBS could televise MLB games. It is only after the threat of a breach of contract lawsuit from the network, as well as MLB's new cable partner, ESPN, that Vincent reinstates Rose and the players end their strike. The 1990 MLB season begins on Memorial Day after an abbreviated spring training.

    Rose gets elected to Cooperstown on his first ballot in 1992. In his induction speech, he thanks the players for standing behind him despite the allegations against him.

    There is no strike in 1994-95 because owners had already gone through two strikes in a calendar decade, and wishing to avoid a second in the 1990s, the owners become more accommodating to the players in the 1994 negotiations.
    The playoffs should expand eventually, but only if MLB itself expands.

    See my blog for more info.

  • #2
    I'd believe everything except the "best of all-time" part.

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    • #3
      As much as I loved Pete, he was not such a lightning rod that all that would result. In hindsight, I would state that a lot of young players of that time were influenced more by Reggie Jackson or by Nolan Ryan than by Pete. Rookies and emerging players may have been glad that Pete had to step aside.

      Also, I must mention that his Reds of 1990 won the World Series in a minor miracle fashion. Some portion of that roster's chemistry could be due to finding themselves out from under Pete's shadow. It was a surprise result one way or another, and I was very glad for it and that the suspected roider A's did not win back to back WS.

      That said, baseball fiction is just what we need today. How about you writing a book or magazine article on it? No kidding here, it could still entertain us.
      Catfish Hunter, RIP. Mark Fidrych, RIP. Skip Caray, RIP. Tony Gwynn, #19, RIP

      A fanatic is someone who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. -- Winston Churchill. (Please take note that I've recently become aware of how this quote applies to a certain US president. This is a coincidence, and the quote was first added to this signature too far back to remember when).

      Experience is the hardest teacher. She gives the test first and the lesson later. -- Dan Quisenberry.

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