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Pete Rose's Corked Bat


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From Deadspin:

"You're looking at an X-ray of a Mizuno PR4192 bat, commissioned by Pete Rose specifically for his 1985 chase of baseball's all-time hits record. Inside, clear as day, is a piece of foreign material, about 6 inches long, and the diameter of a nickel. This is the story of that bat...

A fellow collector urged Schubert to inspect the bat head, and he discovered a circular patch of rough wood under the white paint, about eight-tenths of an inch across. Could it be a drill hole?

Schubert had to know. He took the bat to an X-ray technician, who laid the bat on a table and punched a few buttons. Within minutes an image appeared on the monitor...

It is, indisputably, cork. And with an unbroken chain of ownership, no one but Rose could have put the cork there...

A few years back, Pete Rose addressed the corking rumors.

"Go up to Steve Wolter and get that 4192 bat," Rose said in 2004. "Take it to an examiner and see if there's any cork in it. I guarantee you there won't be.

"If somebody has a corked bat that has my name on it, bring it on down."

Rose has yet to respond to requests for comment."

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Pete Rose isn't particularly bright, he's self-destructive, and apparently can't control his compulsions to do stupid things. So this isn't surprising.

But I look at corked bats as somewhere around jaywalking and going 56 in a 50 zone on the moral outrage scale. Corking a bat does almost nothing that other legal modifications could. Especially today, but even in 1980, corking a bat is/was just a sign of someone who would do anything to get ahead, even if it didn't really help.

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