An Open Letter to Ryan Braunby Fabian Ardaya on Aug. 23, 2013, under Major League Baseball
Dear Ryan Braun,
You finally did it. You took responsibility for your actions, and admitted to using PEDs during your spectacular 2011 MVP season, writing a statement that you released through the Brewers organization Thursday where you apologized for your “serious mistakes”.
But is it enough? No freaking way.
You finally did explain what happened in 2011. That great season (.332/.397/.597 33 HR 111 RBI 33 SB) that probably shouldn’t have happened, you claimed to have taken “a cream and a lozenge” to help speed up the recovery from a nagging calf injury. While still not acceptable, it is reasonable enough explanation for some of us to understand.
Then came winter, and ESPN broke the report that seemingly brought your whole world upside down. You, Ryan Braun, 2011 MVP, had tested positive in October for elevated levels of testosterone. You immediately stood up then to defend your honor and your name, attacking anybody that was involved in the positive test. You went so out of your way to ruin anybody who attempted to seek the truth. So don’t just apologize to us, apologize to Shyam Das, who was fired as MLB drug policy arbitrator after your case, despite being at that post since 1999.
You know who else did something similar? Lance Armstrong. Ever heard of him? He was cycling’s darling, taking the world by storm, fighting cancer to win it again. But at what cost? He was exposed as a liar and a cheat by his teammates, and he attacked them with the same vigor that you attack Major League Baseball. You know what happened to him? He had his seven Tour de France victories stripped from him and was banned for life from the UCI. You? You got 65 games, and MLB isn’t asking for its MVP trophy back.
You got off on a minor technicality in February 2012, having your 50-game suspension overturned because of a mishandling of the sample. You once again stood up for the press conference and proclaimed your innocence. You said, “I swear on my life that that substance never left my body.” You kept your mouth shut and just played that season, building off of your MVP year with yet another strong campaign in 2012 (.319/.391/.595 41 HR 112 RBI 30 SB). You had your chance then, to come clean and give an interview. You wouldn’t have been in the clear, but you’d look a lot better than you look now.
So you told us what drove you to steroids (allegedly) back in 2011. What about the other steroid allegations?
What do you have to say about Ralph Sasson, a former college classmate who you hired to clear your name and then blackballed after you were done with him? According to an ESPN report, Sasson also claims that you had PED use dating back to your time at the University of Miami (conveniently just a few miles away from the Biogenesis clinic), as well as academic fraud and illegally accepting payments against NCAA rules. Such allegations would make Johnny Manziel’s recent allegations seem like a walk in the park.
And that great 2012 season? Did you dope again? If not, then why did your name pop up again earlier this year on a list of names from the now infamous Biogenesis clinic? You claimed that you were using Tony Bosch as a consultant dating back to the first allegations, yet the recent rumors of the evidence that MLB has shows that there is far more connecting him to the clinic. We need answers.
Why did you do it? You were baseball’s next golden boy. You were part of the best 1-2 punch in baseball with Prince Fielder, and were part of a great Brewers team. Milwaukee wanted to make you their Cal Ripken Jr., signing you to a contract through 2020 that includes $107 million guaranteed when Prince Fielder left for Detroit. Oh, and by the way, that contract doesn’t kick in until next season, when you get off of your 65-game
vacation suspension that you got when you cut a deal with MLB.
What we’re asking for is not a simple scripted answer that you thought and wrote out surrounded by advisors and agents. We want you. On camera. We need to see remorse to believe this apology, and most importantly, we need answers to our questions. We need the truth from you. You were so willing to step up to that podium when people first made these allegations. Where are you now?
So many people went up to bat for you, and you made them look stupid. You owe them and the public one thing: honesty.
Don’t live in denial like alleged users Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens. There is a (somewhat) manageable road out of this for you, so you can move on with your life and career. Just look at Jason Giambi. How many of his current Indians teammates do you think would even remember his previous use?
Take a page out of Giambi’s playbook. Come clean, for real this time. Answer our questions, for once and for all. Allow us closure.
TC Arizona Sports