Mr. Carey, thank you for your comment on my recent post. You did make some very good points. My opinion is that as long as Bud Selig is Commissioner, Pete Rose will not be made eligible for the Hall of Fame. Pete signed a 5-page document that banned him from the game. Rumor has it that he signed because either there was still more to come out or that he had made a deal with Bart Giamatti to serve his time and then get back into the game in good standing.
To set the record straight, it was marijuana, not cocaine that was found in Ferguson Jenkins? suitcase when he entered Canada. And you were right when you said Gaylord Perry threw a spitter. I think both were punished somewhat by not receiving enough votes to enter the Hall of Fame right away.
Also, as far as signings are concerned, today?s players and former players really have no say where they sit during an autograph show. Pete really had nothing to do with the timing of his latest book. I know he did not want it to coincide with the Hall of Fame announcement but in this case the publisher ruled.
I am with Pete 3 or 4 times in a year and I enjoy it very much. If Pete flips over next year into the Veteran?s Group, which is made up of all 62 living Hall of Famers plus about 20 other broadcasters and writers, I am afraid that he will find very little support from that group also.
I believe that the fact that he cannot put on a uniform, coach, manage or tell a story hurts him more than attaining the Hall of Fame.
I get many emails and whenever I do speaking engagements almost every question is: Why did I have a short brim? I think I was the only player that wore the short brim in the Majors and I never realized it got that much attention until I left the game. But back in the early ?70s, the Commissioner?s Office made it mandatory for anyone coming into the big leagues to wear a flap on your hat. If you were already in Major League Baseball you had a choice whether to do that or not. Of course, I wanted to wear the flap because it gave me more protection. I had been hit 3 or 4 times in the head and so the more protection, the better for me. When I got the helmet with the flap and put it on, it seemed like the bill was a little longer than my normal hat. The flap was a little longer and consequently when I went up to hit I could see the brim and part of the flap. It made me lose my concentration. I took care of it by taking a hacksaw blade and cut off about 1 ½ inches off the brim and about ½ off the flap. That?s how I got my short brim.
I was very happy to see Bruce Sutter get into the Hall of Fame. I have watched his climb up the ladder as far as attaining the 75-percent vote to get in. Certainly his qualifications meet all the standards when you talk about his impact on the game, his statistics, his longevity and what he brings to the game. Somehow I think there are a lot of relievers that have been lumped into one group. What do you do with a guy like a Goose Gossage or Lee Smith? It?s nice to see a guy like Sutter attain it because he was certainly one of the premier relievers of his era. I?m happy to see him attain the Hall of Fame.
WHAT I?M UP TO
This week I?m at the Orioles Fantasy Camp. I?ve done the camp since I?ve retired in the ?70s. I have a lot of fun putting on the uniform and trying a little baseball.
Also, on Feb. 18, I?ll be in Southern Maryland. Peter Kirk?s group, Maryland Baseball, is behind building a stadium in that area and certainly Southern Maryland is going to be a great area for baseball. There are a lot of people there and great baseball fans. I?ve been to several of their meetings and they are very enthusiastic fans down there. Whether it ends up being Independent Baseball or Minor League Baseball, I?m sure it?s going to be a success. They?re having their FanFest from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. I?ll be there with my good friend Ron Hansen, who was Rookie of the Year when he played with the Orioles. A number of other players will be there also. You can check out their website for more details.
You can find out more about my appearance schedule and look for memorabilia and more by going to my official site at brooksrobinson.com.