Pete Rose had some advice on Tuesday for Alex Rodriguez after the New York Yankees third baseman said he would appeal his 211-game suspension from Major League Baseball following the Biogenesis investigation.
"We have to get these people to understand that if you make mistakes, people will forgive you if you come forward," Rose, the only living person banned from baseball, told USA Today
on Tuesday. "Don't do like I did. Don't do like [Ryan] Braun did. Don't do like A-Rod did.
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"I wish I had come forward a long time ago," Rose added. "Some guys came forward, like [Jason] Giambi, like [Andy] Pettitte. And they went on with their lives.They're playing and they're making good money – and there's no shadow upon them right now."
Rodriguez, 38, was suspended through 2014 – and All-Stars Nelson Cruz, Jhonny Peralta and Everth Cabrera were banned 50 games apiece – on Monday when Major League Baseball disciplined 13 players for their relationship to Biogenesis of America, a Florida anti-aging clinic accused of distributing banned performance-enhancing drugs.
Rodriguez, a three-time Most Valuable Player and baseball's highest-paid star, received the harshest penalty.
He said he would appeal his 211-game suspension by Thursday's deadline. And since arbitrator Fredric Horowitz isn't expected to rule until November or December at the earliest, Rodriguez was able to make season debut Monday night and play the rest of this year.
Rose, 72, who was suspended in 1989 for gambling on games he managed with the Cincinnati Reds in 1987 and 1988, has maintained a relationship with Rodriguez since they met in Las Vegas several years ago.
"He's like the rest of us," Rose told USA Today. "He's made some major mistakes and he's trying to go on with his life. He's in a tough position, I think, with this appeal and with the lawyers telling him to do this, and do that."
Rose said that he understood why Rodriguez would appeal and that he believed it was fair for Rodriguez to continue playing through the appeals process.
"It sounds to me like he thinks he got a lot more than Ryan Braun, and basically he might have done the same thing," Rose said. "Baseball and the players association have rules. If you stay within the rules – which say that you can play while you're appealing – I don't see what anyone would be in arms about.
"I hope he has a good ending of the season, just for his sake – just for peace of mind for him," he added.
Rose told USA Today that he also believed Texas Rangers outfielder Cruz and Detroit Tigers shortstop Peralta should be eligible to play during the 2013 playoffs should their teams qualify.
"If you get a three-month suspension for driving while you're intoxicated, you can drive at three months and one day," he said. "If they're suspended 50 days, and they do their 50 days, they should be able to play on their 51st day.
"If they didn't want them to play, they should've given them 65 days."
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