A month after acknowledging only that he made “mistakes,” Ryan Braun admitted taking performance-enhancing drugs during his NL MVP season of 2011.
The suspended Milwaukee slugger said he took a cream and a lozenge containing banned substances while rehabilitating an injury.
“It was a huge mistake for which I am deeply ashamed and I compounded the situation by not admitting my mistakes immediately,” Braun said in a statement released by the Brewers.
Braun tested positive for elevated testosterone in October 2011, but his 50-game suspension was overturned when an arbitrator ruled that the urine sample was mishandled.
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While Braun took full responsibility for his actions and apologized to the collector of the urine sample, teammates and commissioner Bud Selig among others, the statement still leaves several key questions unanswered.
Among them: Who gave Braun the PEDs and where did they come from? What was the exact substance in the products? Did he know the cream and lozenge were tainted at the time he took them?
Braun has accepted a 65-game suspension resulting from Major League Baseball’s investigation of the now-closed Biogenesis of America anti-aging clinic, which was accused of providing banned substances to players.
“By coming forward when I did and waiving my right to appeal any sanctions that were going to be imposed, I knew I was making the correct decision and taking the first step in the right direction. It was important to me to begin my suspension immediately to minimize the burden on everyone I had so negatively affected — my teammates, the entire Brewers organization, the fans and all of MLB.”
Braun was the first of 14 players disciplined this year as a result of the Biogenesis probe. Twelve accepted 50-game penalties, including a trio of All-Stars: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz, Detroit shortstop Jhonny Peralta and San Diego shortstop Everth Cabrera.
Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez is appealing his 211-game penalty, assessed for violations of the drug program and labor contract.
• Atlanta Braves outfielder Jason Heyward had surgery on his broken right jaw, suffered after being struck by a pitch. He could miss the rest of the regular season.
• Cincinnati RHP Jonathan Broxton is expected to have surgery after he was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right forearm.
• San Francisco Giants outfielder Andres Torres was placed on the 15-day disabled list because of a strained left Achilles tendon and might not return this season.
• The New York Mets signed Japanese right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka to a one-year contract and plan to start him in the opener of a weekend series against Detroit.
• The Yankees recalled reliever Preston Claiborne from Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to replace injured infielder Jayson Nix (broken hand).
• The Blue Jays placed infielder Maicer Izturis (sprained ankle) on the 15-day disabled list and recalled shortstop Ryan Goins from Class AAA Buffalo.