We are fortunate that Fay Vincent is not involved in law enforcement. The former baseball commissioner (and Williams alum) lacks a sense of fairness. Vincent, fine-tuning an old saw, says Pete Rose should not be in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The reason: He is a “very bad fellow” (Record, Jan. 28).
By contrast, Federal Judge Arthur Spiegel, who sentenced Rose in 1990 to five months in prison for tax evasion, says the former player and manager should be in the Hall “for his accomplishments on the ball field” (Berkshire Eagle, Jan. 30). The judge says that Rose has “paid his debt to society.” But to Vincent, Rose’s accomplishments in baseball are not as important as his personality, and his debt won’t be paid until he grovels.
In his interview, Vincent also volunteers information about allegedly stopping Lenny Dykstra from gambling. Maybe that is true, but why must it be recalled in 2003? Dykstra has no criminal record except in Vincent’s mind.
Last year, two Hall of Famers, Ernie Banks and Larry Doby, spoke to a Williams audience with Vincent as moderator. In the question and answer period I asked the two ballplayers if they thought Rose should also be in the Hall. But Vincent would not permit an answer. He had his mind made up; Williams people need not be burdened with the opinions of others.