Blog Entry

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

Posted on: February 23, 2012 5:12 pm
Edited on: February 23, 2012 9:44 pm

By Matt Snyder

Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun has won his appeal and will not serve a suspension for a positive drug test late last season,'s Jon Heyman has confirmed. The news was first reported by the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. This means arbitrator Shyam Das ruled Braun was not guilty in his failed test -- which showed elevated testosterone levels.

The appeal was held in front of Major League Baseball, the MLB Players Association and Das, a third-party arbitrator. The chain of custody of the sample is where Braun won the appeal. His side argued it was improperly handled and there must have been enough evidence to convince Das.

The sample in question was collected on Oct. 1, a Saturday and the day the Brewers opened the NL playoffs. The collector did not send the sample to the laboratory until Monday, thinking it would be more secure at home than at a Federal Express office during the weekend. Baseball's drug agreement states that "absent unusual circumstances, the specimens should be sent by FedEx to the laboratory on the same day they are collected."

Major League Baseball, for one, is not happy. Here's the statement released by MLB executive vice president for labor relations Rob Manfred:

Braun wins appeal
“Major League Baseball considers the obligations of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program essential to the integrity of our game, our Clubs and all of the players who take the field. It has always been Major League Baseball’s position that no matter who tests positive, we will exhaust all avenues in pursuit of the appropriate discipline. We have been true to that position in every instance, because baseball fans deserve nothing less.

“As a part of our drug testing program, the Commissioner’s Office and the Players Association agreed to a neutral third party review for instances that are under dispute. While we have always respected that process, Major League Baseball vehemently disagrees with the decision rendered today by arbitrator Shyam Das.”

Travis Tygart, chief executive officer of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, called the decision "a real gut-kick to clean athletes."

Das has been baseball's independent arbitrator since 2000 and this is the first successful drug test-related appeal.

Positive tests for performance-enhancing drugs have been relatively rare under the major league testing program, with just two others in 2011: Tampa Bay outfielder Manny Ramirez and Colorado Rockies catcher Eliezer Alfonzo. Ramirez at first retired rather than face a 100-game suspension for a second positive test. Now that he wants to play again and since he missed most of last year, he will only need to serve a 50-game penalty.

Braun has maintained his innocence since word of his positive test leaked after the Winter Meetings. Sources told's Danny Knobler that when Braun found out he had tested positive for a banned substance he requested a second test, which came up negative. Braun then appealed the first failed test, and the results were supposed to stay confidential, but an ESPN report outed Braun's test on December 10 and the story has been lingering since then.

Braun, 28, won the NL MVP in 2011 when he hit .332/.397/.597 with 33 homers, 111 RBI and 109 runs for the NL Central-winning Brewers. He will join his teammates in Brewers camp Friday, as scheduled.

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Since: Aug 2, 2011
Posted on: February 24, 2012 7:25 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

Unfortunately, although Braun won the appeal due to a loophole, he has not won over the doubters he did fail a drugs test.

In fairness, the test should be re-taken, and prove conclusively once and for all whether he did take drugs,

I, for one, am not convinced either way but for now he must commit himself on helping his teammates.

Since: Aug 1, 2008
Posted on: February 24, 2012 7:19 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

He did steriods I don't care if it is UPS, Fed EX or DHL,  he is a user period end of story.  

Since: Mar 15, 2008
Posted on: February 24, 2012 7:11 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

Bottom line here, after hearing the arguements for and against, the responsible party here screwed up leaving too much doubt as to the results. And ultimately the responsible party is said MLB. The first test- "insanely high"........ was it tainted somehow. The repeat test. negative. Steroids do have a residual time period in the body and if the first test is insanely high and the second is negative, that will lead to question. Finally, the guy keeps the sample his beer refrigerator over the weekend. Did his friends mess with it? Was it near other samples? Too many questions MLB, and you ultimately screwed this up. And then to come out with an angry statement rather than respecting the process which you approved. Making you look kinda petty and immature. Unless things are clear cut and obvious, don't look to get your way just cuz you're the boss. Grow up and realize you live by the rules you've made rather than make the rules up as you go along as you see fit.

Since: Oct 22, 2008
Posted on: February 24, 2012 6:26 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

Note to MLB's drug sample takers:  Next time you take a sample and it needs to absolutely, positively be there over night, either go to to look up the hours of operation or CALL to see if they are open!  Remember what happens when you ass|u|me?

Braun should have been treated as innocent until proven guilty (though a lot of different post sites and in the media had it the other way 'round), and he was found innocent, technicality or not.  Braun, right or wrong, will now have that on his rep for the remainder of his career and any drop in productivity, even though it could be said was due to the lack of Fielder in the lineup, will have a PED cloud over it.


Since: May 18, 2009
Posted on: February 24, 2012 6:12 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

The Test came back at twice the normal postive results and the second came back NEG.  So if you still have douts test the guy every week.

Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: February 24, 2012 5:25 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

Just one word: WOW!!!!!!!!!

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 5:16 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

Wow look at all these haters.

 (1)Matt Kemp blah blah, Drew Brees had MVP numbers and lost to Arron Rodgers because Rodgers played on a team with a better record. I do not here Saints fans crying or Pats fans for that matter looking at Brady's numbers. (Patriot fans will cry about anything)

 (2) Baseball wanted Braun to be cleared.  Yeah, the statement they released sure sounded like MLB is overjoyed by this.
 We were not supposed to even know he failed the test until today so I guess it gave everybody a way to talk all winter over nothing. I am glad to see this go through for Ryan not only cause I'm a Brewers fan but because it goes to show MLB that there are problems with their testing program and maybe they will go out and fix them.

I know there are many other cynical responses to Braun's guilt and whatever the case maybe he was found innocent, even though 80% percent of the comments from day one said he was guilty

 I am glad to live in America where you're guilty until proven innocent and even then you're still guilty once you're found innocent.

Can we all just get passed this now and actually enjoy the season?

Since: Jan 21, 2008
Posted on: February 24, 2012 4:14 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

the test was already positive before it was in the guys possession who kept it at his house. The test didn't become positive afterworkds. Bruan i guilty and a POS liar. 

Since: Feb 24, 2012
Posted on: February 24, 2012 3:23 am
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Jul 3, 2010
Posted on: February 24, 2012 2:52 am

Braun wins appeal, won't be suspended

So basically an arbitrator decided that there was the even slightest chance of a chain-of-custody issue warranted the decision.  Braun was guilty by association to a high-level of testosterone and the highest levels tested, but a "lawyer" was able to squeeze him through and save the games to be missed.  Sorta like an OJ Simpson did not fit must acquit mojo?  And MLB is unhappy about the decision - so the dude is still guilty and will be marred by this fact for the rest of his career.  STILL THE DUDE IN LA GOT SCREWED ON THE MVP AWARD....he had no Prince batting around him in their lineup. 

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