The former mayor of New York City is an avid and conspicuous
SI: Would being baseball commissioner appeal to you?
Giuliani: I don't think so. I love the game, and I know it very
well, but I don't know that I'd want to get involved on what
would be a business basis. I'd worry that it would take away the
mystique of this whole thing.
SI: Your mayoral aides often called you the Boss. Who gets that
title when you and George Steinbrenner get together?
Giuliani: We've never figured that out. We've never worked for
each other, so we haven't had to figure that out.
SI: Are major league team sports ready to have an openly gay
Giuliani: I'm sure they've had gay players. Sure, they are ready.
Sports reflect the attitude and feelings of the American people,
and the American people are tolerant. If you have a guy that can
hit 40 or 50 home runs, I don't think people are going to worry
about his sexual orientation. They are going to worry about his
orientation to hit the ball over the fence.
SI: If you could experience the life of one athlete for a single
day, who would that be?
Giuliani: Barry Zito. I wish I were a lefthanded pitcher in his
20s with a fastball and a curve like his.
SI: You're a former prosecutor. What's your take on Pete Rose and
the Hall of Fame?
Giuliani: Pete Rose should be allowed in the Hall of Fame and so
should Shoeless Joe Jackson. The Hall of Fame is not for moral
correctness. It's not a Hall of Saints. It's about excellence on
the baseball field.
SI: After the attacks of September 11 you said one of the only
things that would relax you during that time was to watch a
Giuliani: I had very few moments when I wasn't thinking about
what was going on. The only times I could relax were at the
Yankees or one of my son's high school football games. Even the
opera--which I love--when I would go, I would find I had to
leave. I would be thinking about [the attacks] all the time.
SI: You said you would like to run for public office after 2004.
Which has the best ring to it: Senator Giuliani, Governor
Giuliani or President Giuliani?
Giuliani: Manager Giuliani. If Joe Torre ever wants to hang it
up, I'm here. --Richard Deitsch
For more from Giuliani, go to si.com/siexclusive
COLOR PHOTO: CHRIS HONDROS/NEWSMAKERS/GETTY IMAGES (GIULIANI) Zito wannabe