Braun Wins Appeal, No Suspension, Expected to Join Brewers Friday
For the first time in history, a player has appealed a drug-related suspension and won. Ryan Braun, last year’s NL MVP award winner successfully appealed a 50-game suspension based on a failed drug test that revealed elevated levels of testosterone in the slugger’s system last October. The decision sent shockwaves through MLB’s front offices just one day before the 28-year old outfielder was expected in camp with the Brewers.
Braun tested positive for elevated testosterone in October, and the results went public in December, not long after the slugger was named the MVP of the National League for helping to get the Brewers to the NLCS. Braun never disputed the science of his testing, nor did he accuse anyone of tampering with the sample, but instead appealed on protocol after it was revealed that his sample was not sent directly after collection due to the FedEx location that its collector attempted to use was closed. The sample was to be sent on a Saturday, but due to the time of day that the sample was collected and the shipping attempt made, the office was closed and would not reopen until Monday morning. The collector kept the sample in a cool place until it was able to be shipped on the following Monday, but this was enough to warrant granting an appeal to the suspension even though all seals on the collected substance were found to be in-tact and the sample was shipped and delivered to the proper testing facility showing no signs of degradation.
Braun’s T/E ratio was initially found to be 20:1 and a synthetic testosterone was found in his system as a result of the test. However because of the way the sample was handled, it gave enough cause for Baseball arbitrator Shyam Das to overturn the suspension. Major League Baseball is not happy about this decision and is reportedly weighing their options to appeal the appeal. Braun hit .312 last season, belting out 33 home runs and driving in 111 runs on his way to the NL MVP award. Based on his performance, the Brewers signed him to a new deal that runs through the end of 2020 worth as much as $105 million guaranteed and $145.5 million over the course of the next eight years. He is expected to join his teammates on Friday as they begin workouts and prepare for Spring Training play which kicks off next weekend.
By: Robert Gonzalez
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