According to Foxsports:
Milwaukee Brewers slugger Ryan Braun said the person who ran the Florida clinic being investigated by Major League Baseball was used only as a consultant on his drug suspension appeal last year.
”I have nothing to hide,” Braun said in a statement released by his representatives on Tuesday night.
Earlier in the day, Yahoo Sports reported the 2011 NL MVP’s name showed up three times in records of the Biogenesis of America LLC clinic. Yahoo said no specific performance-enhancing drugs were listed next to his name.
The Miami New Times recently released clinic documents that purportedly linked Alex Rodriguez, Gio Gonzalez, Melky Cabrera and other players to purchases of banned drugs from the now-closed anti-aging center.
Rodriguez and Cabrera were on the list with Braun that also included New York Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli and Baltimore Orioles infielder Danny Valencia.
Braun said his name was in the Biogenesis records because of an issue over payment to Anthony Bosch, who ran the clinic near Miami.
”There was a dispute over compensation for Bosch’s work, which is why my lawyer and I are listed under `moneys owed’ and not on any other list,” Braun said.
”I have nothing to hide and have never had any other relationship with Bosch,” he said. ”I will fully cooperate with any inquiry into this matter.”
On Tuesday, MLB officials asked the Miami New Times for the records the alternative newspaper obtained for its story.
Asked specifically about Braun’s name in the documents before the five-time All-Star released his statement, MLB spokesman Pat Courtney said: ”Aware of report and are in the midst of an active investigation in South Florida.”
Braun tested positive during the 2011 postseason for elevated testosterone levels. He maintained his innocence and his 50-game suspension was overturned during spring training last year when arbitrator Shyam Das ruled in favor of Braun due to chain of custody issues involving the sample.
With that, Braun became the first major leaguer to have a drug suspension overturned.
”During the course of preparing for my successful appeal last year, my attorneys, who were previously familiar with Tony Bosch, used him as a consultant. More specifically, he answered questions about T/E ratio and possibilities of tampering with samples,” Braun said.
The T/E ratio is a comparison of the levels of testosterone to epitestosterone.
Braun led the NL in homers (41), runs (108) and slugging percentage (.595) last season while batting .319 with 112 RBIs and 30 stolen bases. He finished second to San Francisco catcher Buster Posey in MVP balloting.”
Cervelli, who spent nearly all of last season in Triple-A, posted a statement on Twitter later Tuesday night.
”Following my foot injury in March 2011, I consulted with a number of experts, including BioGenesis Clinic, for (cont),” Cervelli posted, ”(cont)legal ways to aid my rehab and recovery. I purchased supplements that I am certain were not prohibited by Major League Baseball.”
An email sent to Valencia’s agent was not returned.”
After about a week after Alex Rodriguez, Gio Gonzalez, Melky Cabrera, and other names were rumored to be connected with Biogenesis, a company known for distributing PEDs, Ryan Braun’s name has now been thrown into the mix. Since he has come into the league, Braun has been one of the MLB’s best all-around players, leading the NL in homeruns in 2012 and winning the NL MVP in 2011. ARod, Braun, Gonzalez, and Cabrera are all notable MLB players and it seems like this situation is only going to get worse before it gets better. With the mass amounts of PED scandals rearing its ugly head within the last 2-5 years, it is clear that the MLB must change its culture in order to stay clean. Due to this era in baseball history, I believe it will for the MLB to change many facets of the game; let’s take a look at how we may be seeing America’s Pastime adapting within the next couple of years.
1) LESS LONG-TERM CONTRACTS
Just a couple of years removed from seeing such stars as Ryan Braun, Prince Fielder, Alex Rodriguez, and Carl Crawford sign monster, long-term contracts, we have seen many of them crash and burn. After these current PED scandals surrounding Braun and ARod, how do their respective teams deal with their contracts if they are found guilty? The Yankees currently owe Rodriguez $114 million over 5 years, while the Brewers owe Braun $145.5 million through 2020. These once-celebrated lockups have now put teams in a situation that nobody wants to be in; nobody wants a troublesome player taking up space on their roster and money off of their payroll, especially fading stars like ARod. This new wave of contract regret will ultimately lead to less long-term contracts, and we may also see…..
2) NEW PED CLAUSES IN CONTRACTS
I mean, it doesn’t sound like a bad idea for a team, does it? With all of these PED scandals emerging, teams are going to look to protect themselves in long-term contracts. The only way long-term, lucrative contracts will survive in baseball is through PED clauses. I am not exactly sure how teams would word it, but I am sure something like after 1 or 2 positive tests or suspicions, an opt-out clause is activated in the players’ contract. Not only will it leave the players less likely to use any PEDs, but it will also leave their respective team feeling protected and confident in their investment.
3) INSTITUTE PLAYERS CONSULTANTS
It has always been said that in the PED industry that the players and their suppliers are always one step ahead of the testing. The only people who could truly know what is going on in the clubhouse are the players themselves. Now, I do think player consultants could be extremely useful – but you would need to find someone who is 100% clean and devoted to keeping the game itself clean. It would have to be a secretive process so there is nothing being hidden by the players. No names would be given, just practices and how players are getting around the testing. If done correctly and carefully, I believe player consultants could help the game out greatly.
The MLB has done a decent job at adapting to the times with their steroid testing and new HGH testing, but it has not stopped players from finding ways around a positive test. If the players cannot take care of themselves, the MLB needs to at least look after the owners and teams themselves and create contract clauses. This will not only help out the team, but I believe it will also give the players a reason to stay clean. Stay tuned this week for more sports news from your favorite sports site!
- Steve Falzone