To celebrate President’s Day, The Captain’s Blog dug deep into its dusty archives to uncover one of the most highly sought after video clips dealing with baseball and the U.S. Presidency. The elusive footage, which features Pete Rose and President Reagan, had escaped capture on the internet until today, so sit back and enjoy this unique treasure.
The video below takes place during a postgame press conference on August 10, 1981, the day Rose broke Stan Musial’s all-time National League hit record with tally number 3,631. While standing between Musial and baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn, Rose was handed a red phone, but actually getting through to the President proved to be rather difficult. During the whole ordeal, Rose had the assembled crowd in stitches, but the funniest remark comes about 13 seconds into the video when he makes a veiled reference to the air traffic controller strike that had taken place one week earlier. Two days after the strike, President Reagan terminated all who had participated, which not only caused quite a political stir, but ultimately set Rose up with the perfect punchline.