Milwaukee Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun has been suspended for the final 65 games of 2013 without pay after being connected with the Biogenesis scandal. Any post season games the Brewers would qualify for would be included in the ban as well.
The suspension comes as a violation of Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, the outcome of the league’s extensive investigation into Miami’s Biogenesis wellness clinic.
“As I have acknowledged in the past, I am not perfect,” Braun said in a league statement. “I realize now that I have made some mistakes. I am willing to accept the consequences of those actions. This situation has taken a toll on me and my entire family, and it is has been a distraction to my teammates and the Brewers organization. I am very grateful for the support I have received from players, ownership and the fans in Milwaukee and around the country.
“Finally, I wish to apologize to anyone I may have disappointed — all of the baseball fans especially those in Milwaukee, the great Brewers organization, and my teammates. I am glad to have this matter behind me once and for all, and I cannot wait to get back to the game I love.”
Braun will have to wait until next year to play the game he loves, his suspension cannot end even if his team somehow makes the world series.
Having avoided suspension based on a suspect sample transportation after game 1 of the 2011 National League Divisional Series, Braun will be well versed at handling boos when he is up to bat. However the chorus of boos certain to rain down on him when he takes his first away at bat next year will dwarf anything he experienced the first time around.
Major League Baseball officials supported Braun and commended the actions he took in the aftermath of his suspension, even if he was stubborn and borderline uncooperative during it. Throughout the investigation Braun maintained his silence, refusing to speak with investigators.
“We commend Ryan Braun for taking responsibility for his past actions. We all agree that it is in the best interests of the game to resolve this matter. When Ryan returns, we look forward to him making positive contributions to Major League Baseball, both on and off the field,” Rob Manfred, the MLB executive vice president said in a statement shortly after the announcement of Braun’s suspension was made.
“I am deeply gratified to see Ryan taking this bold step,” added Michael Weiner, the MLB players association executive director. “It vindicates the rights of all players under the Joint Drug Program. It is good for the game that Ryan will return soon to continue his great work both on and off the field.”
Ryan Braun’s presence will be sorely missed by an already struggling Brewers team during his suspension. The slugger has made the All-Star game five times during his career. He won the MVP in 2011, and was Rookie of the Year back in 2007.
He has already missed significant time this season due to injury, missing time early with a stiff next. Throughout the summer an inflamed nerve in his right thumb has kept him from seeing the field consistently. He spent a month on the DL between June and July, as well as several games before the All-Star break due to a family emergency.
Ryan Braun will now have 65 games to heal, as he will miss the rest of the season because of a suspension for violating the league’s joint drug prevention and treatment program. After dodging it the first time his name surfaced around PEDs, Braun was caught the second time around.
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Senior Sports Editor
The Guardian Express