Blog Entry

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

Posted on: February 24, 2012 12:01 pm
PHOENIX, Ariz. -- As Ryan Braun reported to camp on Friday, Brewers player representative Chris Narveson said there have been issues with drug testing before in Milwaukee.

Specifically, with one of his own tests shortly after last summer's All-Star Game.

"Mine was more of a failure to communicate that I was getting tested," Narveson said Friday morning. "You're walking out the door in your street clothes an hour-and-a-half after the game and they come up to you and say, 'We forgot to tell you, you're getting tested.

"Errors like that can't happen."

Narveson added: "It's interesting, that's two instances for us with the same group of guys testing. .... One time can be an aberration."

The pitchers said that after he was collared late for testing when leaving the ballpark after already dressing, that they tightened things up "and tried to make sure they notified us" more promptly after a game.

Still, Narveson said the players firmly support drug testing. They just want things done right.

"I don't think there are flaws in the system," Narveson said. "If they follow protocol the whole way, I don't think we have an issue."

But he pointed out that the testers did not follow protocol with him. And, of course, a large part of Braun's dispute was that his specimen sat at the tester's home for more than 48 hours before being shipped where it was supposed to go.

"Ryan's sample sat for 48 hours," Narveson said. "Anybody can do anything [to] it."

Narveson and several Brewers also sharply criticized the system for allowing a leak in the first place. News of Braun testing positive for synthetic testosterone leaked to ESPN in December.

"Now that we look back, if this didn't get out, nobody hears about it," Narveson said. "Braun comes in today and there's four or five reporters saying, 'How was your off-season?'"

Since: May 14, 2007
Posted on: February 24, 2012 6:51 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

XFACTOR, how do you know Bautista never had a failed test and had to appeal it? The process is suppose to be confidential and notification is only given to the media if the player loses his appeal and a suspension is handed out. That is why Braun got the shaft in this whole process.

Since: Mar 11, 2010
Posted on: February 24, 2012 5:43 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

I have heard many reporters, journalists, and everyday sports fans criticize Ryan Braun for "getting off" on procedural errors. I have heard from many of them that this doesn't mean he didn't take an illegal substance. In fact, they seem to think that by he and his attorneys arguing procedure instead of a "false positive" that he must be guilty. I say B.S. When you are in a legal forum and are trying to prove your innocence, you take the most direct and obviuos route to accomplish your goal. In this case the correct procedures were so blatantly abused that arguing the results would have only clouded the issue. Ryan has always stated his innocence and would have played that card in his appeal if necessary. It just wasn't necessary.

I do not think that Ryan needs to defend himself anymore at all. The decision handed down is the correct one because the testing procedure was flawed. If I was Ryan Braun and a reporter asked me to explain the positive results, implying that I was guilty even though the procedure was flawed, I would ask this question:

"Mr. reporter, are you willing to pee in a cup for me right now? If so, I am taking the sample home to my refrigerator for a couple of days and then sending it off to the lab. Are you willing to accept the results of that test and let it define your legacy for the rest of your life?" Every reporter would answer with an obvious "NO", because the sample can be altered or botched without proper protocal in place.....Just as Ryan Braun and his attorneys have proved!      

Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 5:39 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

Ok, try not to fall off your pedestal, but just stop and think for one moment. The levels of "his" test were outrageously high, and he has no trace when tested a few weeks later, Nothing. Doesn't that seem just a little odd to you?

Since: Oct 30, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 5:27 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

Bottom line - The HIPPA rights of Ryan Braun were violated and this is far from over...

Since: Sep 18, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 4:50 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

I'm glad someone noticed the 48 hour time frame the sample sat around.  I served 37 yrs in the military and was subject to random sampling and there were specific guidelines as to how the sample was handled from start to finish.  In Braun's case I'd say a serious breach in the chain of control happened.  Anyone could have tampered with the sample over the 2 day time frame.  I'm glad he won the appeal.  Now the big problem for Braun is restoring his good name.  Something like this tends to taint a player no matter whether the allegations were true or not.  In Braun's case he has always handled himself with class (which is a rarity these days).  I'm glad baseball got this right.  I do think they may need to look at the process though.  Maybe keeping the testing results private until the appeal process is complete.  That way if the player is cleared his reputation is not tarnished needlessly.

Since: May 18, 2009
Posted on: February 24, 2012 4:09 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

In reading this, all I can say is....well sheesh, someone should have WARNED Narveson that he was going to be tested. I mean, shouldn't they all have time to figure out how to beat it before he gets tested. What an IDIOT! If anything, that's how it should be. Just like a pop quiz. Now I'm not saying Braun did take the 'roids or anything else. But then again I'm a Jays fan who hear's it all the time about Bautista. But then again, he never tested positive and had his appeal over-turned. Imagine if he had and it was OT. There would have been NO WAY people would believe he was clean. So, I'll take that approach with Braun. Which is....I'm not sold yet, haha.

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 4:02 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

Narverson, unless it was hashed out in collective barganing they can approach you anytime you are on business or the property. It's called "random test" for a reason. It would be pointless to test if everyone knew when they were going to have to do it.

Since: Nov 9, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 3:58 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

dgredsfan, playing the Selig card still after 7 1/2 years of ownership by Mark Attanasio is absolutely PATHETIC.  When did you feel Marge Schott stopped owning the Reds?  10 years after she sold them?  Perhaps her death?  Maybe in your eyes and your logic, she is still the owner of the Reds "in spirit".  It's insulting to Attanasio who has more than tripled the Brewers payroll in his tenure and providing some business sense to a franchise that had gone wayward and perpetually played the small market card under Selig.  Your obvious bias as a fan of a division rival along with your refusal to let go of your petty arguments for why Braun won his appeal rather than consider the possibility that he is truly INNOCENT rather than lucky, do more to reveal your unwillingness to adjust your pre-conceived notions on things than anything else.  How about growing a pair and admit you just might have been wrong all along?

Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 3:31 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

I am not an apologist for Braun or a defender, if someone made me bet all my money if he took steroids or not I would have to say yes. But the issue here is you are testing for something that has a lot of consequences for the individual, his reputation and in some way his livelihood are at stake. Baseball needs to have thier testing methods beyond reproach, there needs to be no room for error, regardless if Braun did steroids or not, baseball has to have its testing squared away so this kinda of ambiguity dosen't happen again, the burden is on them to have it cleaned up.       

Since: Jan 26, 2012
Posted on: February 24, 2012 3:08 pm

Brewers player rep: Testing problems in Milwaukee

Excellent post.  I was particularly taken a back by the Brewers' player rep stating that he was asked for a sample afte he was already in street clothes.  Random is random I guess except in Milwaukee where, supposedly Bud no longer owns the team and apartently, using their Reps inference, the Brewers players get plenty of advance notice.  I find this very interesting.  Braun's test showed extemely high levels of a synthetic testosterone but it did not show any tampering by the agent who took it.  If tampering had occured, that would have come out.  Braun won his appeal on a technicallity and I don't have a problem with that.  Chain of command should always be followed certainly but with the Brewers' reps statement, things seem to be done a little differently for the "Selig really doesn't own them anymore" Brewers.  To all of those who claim that Braun doesn't look like a roider.  Have you seen his eyes?  Do they look normal to you?  Furthermore, drugs including steroids become more advanced each day.  The side affects aren't the same in every person either. Instead of chanting MVP when I go and sit behind Braun this season, I will be holding a sign and chanting PED.  Braun is a cheater and he will likely get caught and then get off again thanks to Bud.

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