Say the name Pete Rose amongst a group of baseball fans and you’ll either get one of two reactions: you will either see eyes rolling with a possible “pfft” sound claiming he is the antithesis of baseball, or you will get someone that says he is a gamer, one of the best of all time, and the very definition of what a baseball player should be.  Suffice to say, Rose is a very polarizing individual.

Pete Rose was nicknamed Charlie Hustle for a reason.  He loved turning a single into a double, diving for defensive stops, and barreling down an opponent when necessary – even in an exhibition the All-Star Game.  During the 12th inning of the 1970 Midsummer Classic, Rose did just that, taking out Ray Fosse to give the National League a 5-4 victory at Riverfront Stadium – where Pete’s very own Cincinnati Reds played.  Check out the video below:

Rose went on to play a total of 24 seasons while becoming baseball’s all-time games, at bats, and hits leader.  He finished with a career .303 average, is tied for the second-longest hitting streak of all time (44 games), won both an MVP and the Rookie of the Year Award, was a 3-time World Series champion with the Big Red Machine, and made 17 All-Star Games – with none more highly publicized than the 1970 game where the above event happened.  Fosse, however, did not fare so well in the future.

Due to a lack of MRI machines, Fosse saw the doctor, received an x-ray, and was deemed fit to play.  They suited him up two days later with nothing more than a bum shoulder.  He went on to play for two more months with what was later revealed to be a fractured and separated shoulder.  At the time of the 1970 All-Star Game, Fosse had 16 HRs and 45 RBIs.  He went on to hit only 43 more HRs and 270 more RBIs in 2,533 ABs (9 1/2 seasons) before he called it quits.  Ray Fosse, though, still has one thing Pete Rose doesn’t: eligibility to join the Hall of Fame.  Not that Fosse will – he has almost a 0% chance unless the Veteran’s Committee votes him in – but it’s more than Rose has.  Rose bet against baseball and that’s a no-no, at least according to Paul Giamatti’s father.

Nevertheless, the 1970 All-Star Game, which featured 20+ Hall of Fame players, is better known – for good and bad reasons – as the Pete Rose Game.

[Baseball Reference, MLB, Wiki]