Ryan Braun Declares He Has Been Vindicated

A day after his 50-game suspension was overturned, Ryan Braun reported in to spring training with the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday, sounding self-assured that his name had been vindicated after the media, as he says, dragged his name “through the mud.”

Braun, with his fellow Brewers sitting in the stands, held a news conference on the field at the team’s training complex on Friday. He said that he always believe that his suspension would be overturned and that he’s looking forward to suiting up with his teammates on opening day.

“At the end of the day the truth prevailed,” he said. “I’m a victim of a process that completely broke down and failed in the way that it was applied to me in the case.

“As players, we’re held to a standard of 100% perfection regarding the program, and everybody else associated with that program should be held to the same standard. We’re a part of a process where you’re 100% guilty until proven innocent. It’s the opposite of the American judicial system.”

Braun first learned that his urine sample showed that his testosterone levels were highly elevated, reportedly three times the level of any previous specimen, a fact that he doesn’t deny. What he does deny, however, is that he ever took any performance-enhancing substances.

Braun said that his urine sample showing elevated levels of testosterone could be due to a “chain of custody” problem–he submitted his sample on October 1, but it wasn’t delivered to FedEx until October 3.

“I honestly don’t know what happened to it for that 44-hour period,” he said. “There are a lot of different things that could have possibly happened.

“There are a lot of things that we heard about the collection process, the collector and some other people involved in the process that have been concerning to us. But as I’ve dealt with the situation, I know what it’s like to be wrongly accused of something, so for me to wrongly accuse somebody wouldn’t help.”

via LA Times