A city councilman wants to resolve a feud between Pete Rose and Johnny Bench by renaming a street in honor of both former Cincinnati Reds stars.
Councilman Nick Vehr on Friday proposed renaming Pete Rose Way to Pete Rose/Johnny Bench Way, honoring the two who recently have been criticizing each other in radio interviews.In separate interviews Tuesday on WLW-AM, Bench said he believed Rose bet on baseball and should be kept out of the Hall of Fame. Rose shot back that Bench doesn't think before talking and does not know the facts on Rose's banishment from baseball. He also said he thought Bench's comments were born of jealousy over Rose's popularity with fans.
Vehr said he wants to remember the two in the glory days of the Big Red Machine "when I was a kid growing up idolizing these two guys as baseball players."
But some of Vehr's colleagues don't think his proposal is such a good idea.
"I don't know if a forced reconciliation is anything we should be involved in," said Councilman Todd Portune.
The council changed the name from Second Street to Pete Rose Way in 1985. That was after Rose became the career hits leader but before he was banned from the game for associating with gamblers.
At the time, some questioned the wisdom of naming the street for a living person because the honoree might later do something to embarrass the city.
Councilwoman Bobbie Sterne, who voted against renaming the street for Rose, said, "I don't think Johnny Bench should have to share anything with Pete Rose."
Vehr's motion will be sent to council's Public Works Committee for study.