On September 11, 1985, with a sell-out crowd of 52,000 fans on hand at Cincinnati's Riverfront Stadium and millions of others watching on television, Pete Rose collected hit number 4,192 of his career and passed Ty Cobb as the all-time career hits leader. As he reached first base, thousands of cameras flashed, his teammates mobbed him, fireworks exploded and the crowd overwhelmed him with a seven-minute standing ovation. Rose was on top of the world. Less than four years later, he would be banned for life from baseball for allegedly betting on major league games, roundly criticized in the press by both fans and fellow players, and then convicted for tax evasion.
In 2003, fourteen years after he was made ineligible for the Hall of Fame, Commissioner Bud Selig took up Rose's application for reinstatement, igniting once again an intense debate about his legacy and baseball's long-standing zero-tolerance policy on gambling. This book gathers the available facts of Rose's life and career, as well as the scandals he was embroiled in, leaving the reader a more informed participant in the ongoing discussion.