Pete Rose: Pete Rose never had a gambling problem

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I missed this when I put up the earlier Pete Rose post, but apparently Charlie Hustle sat for an extended interview with with Yahoo!’s Graham Bensinger. In it he discusses baseball stuff and gambling stuff, particularly the idea that he had a gambling addiction:

“I needed something extra. I lost the edge in getting those at-bats and
being competitive. So, you know, I was wrong but the best way to be
competitive to me was to bet on my own team to win every night . . . I don’t think I was an addict. I think I could control what I was
doing. I just was wrong and I got caught … I actually went to some
Gamblers Anonymous classes and I sat there for three or four of them and
I’m trying to figure out what I have in similarities with these other
people and I could never find anything.”

I’m highly skeptical of our society’s habit of calling everything an addiction. Sometimes people drink a bit too much. Doesn’t make them an alcoholic. Sometimes people fool around with people who aren’t their spouses. Doesn’t make them a sex addict. Sometimes people bet hundreds of times a year and structure their whole lives around gambling in order to somehow — any way they can — achieve that oh-so-satisfying rush they had when they were younger but just can’t get no matter how hard they try to, and THANK YOU THANK YOU gambling for giving me what I need to get through the day, ahhhhhhhhhhh . . . .

OK, you know what? I still think Rose was a gambling addict.

(link via Big League Stew

Report: Pirates sign Felipe Rivero to four-year contract extension

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Pirates will sign reliever Felipe Rivero to a four-year contract extension that includes two club options. The total value of the deal is believed to be $22 million and each club option is worth $10 million.

Rivero, 26, did not come to an agreement with the Pirates to avoid arbitration in his first year of eligibility ahead of last Friday’s deadline. He requested a $2.9 million salary for the 2018 season while the Pirates countered at $2.4 million. This extension will cover all four years of Rivero’s arbitration eligibility and the two club options can cover his first two years of free agency as well.

Rivero was one of baseball’s best relievers last season, finishing with 21 saves, a 1.67 ERA, and an 88/20 K/BB ratio in 75 1/3 innings. The Pirates acquired him from the Nationals along with minor leaguer Taylor Hearn ahead of the 2016 non-waiver trade deadline in the Mark Melancon deal.

Presumably, Rivero’s extension was in the works before he knew anything about the Andrew McCutchen trade. He made a couple of tweets following this afternoon’s news. In one, he used only the “facepalm” emoji. The other was a .gif of The Office character Jim Halpert yelling, “What is going on?”