When Mr. Rose began his career in 1963, you could smoke anywhere but gamble legally only in Nevada. Today, you can smoke virtually nowhere but gamble in dozens of states.
Baseball’s venerable records, especially those involving home runs, are now frustratingly incommensurable between eras. Any individual steroid user you can name did more to damage baseball than Mr. Rose did, but none has been punished so harshly. Mr. McGwire is hitting coach for the Los Angeles Dodgers. Mr. Bonds has worked for the San Francisco Giants.
And baseball has changed. If Bonds, McGwire, etc. are on the Hall of Fame ballot every year, Pete Rose should be as well.