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Report: MLB plans to suspend Ryan Braun, Alex Rodriguez, and 20 other players

Jul 9, 2013, 5:46 PM EDT

ryan braun getty Getty Images

Ryan Braun returns to the Brewers’ lineup tonight after missing a month with a thumb injury and he’s back just in time for this bombshell report from ESPN.com saying that MLB plans to suspend Braun, along with Alex Rodriguez and as many as 20 other players.

According to T.J. Quinn and Mike Fish from “Outside The Lines” Braun “refused to answer questions during a recent meeting with Major League Baseball” and suspensions are expected “sometime after next week’s All-Star break.”

Quinn and Fish quote sources saying that 100-game suspensions are being considered even though that’s the standard second-time offender penalty and neither Braun nor Rodriguez have served a suspension previously. The argument being made is that lying is viewed as the second offense.

Reports of MLB wanting to suspend 20 players first surfaced via Quinn and Fish back on June 4, but have mostly been dormant since then. During that time Biogensis director Tony Bosch was expected to meet with MLB officials and reveal details, leading to the hammer that’s apparently about to drop.

  1. theinconvienenttruth - Jul 9, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    ARod get comfortable playing down in the minors

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 9, 2013 at 5:52 PM

      Once his rehab window is up, he has to be put in the majors. Even if he’s suspended, which I still doubt will happen, he has to be brought up once the suspension is over with.

      • theinconvienenttruth - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:17 PM

        This is true, but the Yankees can always say that he aggravated the injury and he can restart the rehab clock with consent of ARod. Which ARod would more than likely give consent rather than just sit around or retire.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:29 PM

        Which ARod would more than likely give consent rather than just sit around or retire.

        Why would he do this? He’s going to get paid regardless. Were you not here for the Arod “I’m happy to start my rehab so I can get back to playing with the Yankees” tweet snafu? The guy wants to get back to playing.

      • shmee194 - Jul 9, 2013 at 9:08 PM

        Well AROD in the postseason last year hit 120 with no RBI’s 12 k’s, 2 walks, and slugged a ferocious 120. His on base was an amazing 185. So IMO he is washed up and has been trending down for the last couple of seasons. I guess you’re an AROD fan which is great , I was a Don Mattingly fan and didn’t want to admit his back ruined his power .. To each their own.. Have a goodnight

      • sabatimus - Jul 9, 2013 at 10:50 PM

        Why do you doubt the suspension will happen? This is a league that colluded with Melky Cabrera to not have his batting title count. They can basically do anything.

  2. heyblueyoustink - Jul 9, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    Has there not been enough poo throwing on HBT today?!?

    Someone please think of the children!

    • anxovies - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:33 PM

      The children are down by the Middle School peddling drugs.

      • heyblueyoustink - Jul 9, 2013 at 8:14 PM

        Young entrepreneurs indeed.

    • sabatimus - Jul 9, 2013 at 10:51 PM

      The sooner children wise up to the way life REALLY is, the better.

  3. djjackson81 - Jul 9, 2013 at 5:54 PM

    Sell of the team Brewers here comes a 50 suspension if not more. Sell sell sell season over

  4. docboss - Jul 9, 2013 at 5:54 PM

    Can we start calling Ryan “Barry”?

    • goawaydog - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:11 PM

      Barry never got caught.

      • psunick - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:31 PM

        Neither has Braun
        :)

    • chip56 - Jul 9, 2013 at 11:03 PM

      He’s more Lance Armstrong than Barry – lying through his teeth and using loopholes to avoid taking responsibility for his actions.

  5. yondo123 - Jul 9, 2013 at 5:56 PM

    O Arod how fast you fell….

  6. blabidibla - Jul 9, 2013 at 5:58 PM

    Next everyone appeals and the process get’s delayed into the offseason.

  7. icanspeel - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    It’s funny how they are waiting until after the All-star break.. esp for someone such as Everth Cabrera. Congrats you made all-star team! Once you play you are suspended right after.

  8. ptfu - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:04 PM

    This is beyond ridiculous. Never mind the dodginess of Biogenesis, or the whole frenemies thing with absurdly-suing-people-wait-now-they’re-on-our-side . Baseball isn’t even following its own rules on the JDA. This is going to be appealed, arbitrated, and lawyered (if it isn’t a word yet, it is now) to hell. No one is going to miss any games due to Biogenesis for a long time, possibly forever.

    • theolgoaler - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:11 PM

      Bingo! (cues up Warren Zevon’s “Lawyers, Guns, and Money” for background music) There WILL be appeals – and probably lawsuits.

      • flamethrower101 - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:28 PM

        The way I see it, Bud Selig doesn’t give two [expletives] about “lawsuits” or “appeals”. He knows he’s retiring after 2014 so he figures “Hey, I can do whatever the [expletive] I want and let the next guy clean up the mess.”

    • bigharold - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:20 PM

      I was beginning to wonder if I was the only one that had a problem with MLB using this dirt bag Bosch, .. actually coercing this dirt bag, .. and his fellow dirt bag Porter Fischer, the one that refereed the MLB investigators as the biggest scumbags on Earth, as primary witnesses against these players. I really hope MLB has some sort substantial corroborating evidence or you are correct, .. this will go on for ever.

      Not to mention MLB is showing a lot of class, and all of it low, leaking this information to the press. This is the same organization, MLB, that banned George Steinbrenner for engaging a low life to get dirt on Dave Winfield and yet when it suits their purposes they’ll using the Civil Justice system to coerce dirt bag to give them the dirt on players. Next thing you know Bud will subpoena Sammy The Bull Gravano.

      I really hope they have a lot more than these clowns. You gotta work pretty hard to make A-Rod look like a sympathetic figure but that the way it looks like it’s heading.

    • sdelmonte - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:35 PM

      Beyond which, this doesn’t seem like news. More like a leak to remind us of how Serious baseball is about steroids or something.

    • tfbuckfutter - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:50 PM

      It may not be about ENFORCING the actual suspensions.

      Just making the spectacle, tainting the players’ names, and showing you will TRY to close loopholes and enforce the policy, even if it’s overturned, may be enough of an endgame for MLB.

    • anxovies - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:17 PM

      You are no doubt correct. If Bosch had any seriously damaging evidence against Braun and ARod it would have been leaked long ago. Unlike Bosch, ARod in particular has plenty of money to mount a very serious legal attack on any arbitrary actions by the league. They are going to need something more than a leaked list of names and testimony coerced out of somebody who can’t afford to defend against a baseless federal lawsuit. Any such lawsuit might well expand into an inquiry into MLB’s past tolerance of PED use and other things that the league and the players involved might not like to be made public. Considering the arrogance of the participants this prospect will not be likely to deter such proceedings.

      • shmee194 - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:40 PM

        Everyone has great points here… MLB is so stupid. But when this story first broke month or so ago, there was a story that they had minor leaguers going along with the story saying they witnessed the PED use. Maybe that’s MLB”s smoking gun. Who knows what’s true or what information they have. All I know is that AROD is washed up anyway and he’s coming back to play and add another automatic out in this terrible Yankee lineup…

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:47 PM

        All I know is that AROD is washed up anyway

        OPS+ last three years
        123, 119, 113

        Best OPS+ on this year’s team:
        Cano – 143, Gardner – 105

        No one else is above 100. So how is he washed up again?

    • chip56 - Jul 9, 2013 at 11:07 PM

      A judge would laugh this out of court if someone tried to expand it beyond the arbitration phase. Let me explain how this would go:

      Judge: Did your client receive due process as spelled out by the league’s CBA in the form of an investigation and arbitration hearing?
      Lawyer: Yes.
      Judge: And you want to set aside that decision because you don’t like it?
      Lawyer: Yes.
      Judge: Go away now.

  9. Darkoestrada - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:04 PM

    I think if baseball must suspend everyone linked to biogenesis they should do it in the offseason so teams can prepare for it going into next season. A mass suspension now will have a huge impact on the playoff races and punishes teams that really had no idea this was coming at the start of the year. And now that its this deep in the season, it will be too late for teams to even make a trade by the time the suspensions are announced and the appeals process plays out.

    • brewcrewfan54 - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:22 PM

      A suspension is a punishment. A punishment in a team sport hirts everyone, that’s kinda part of what’s supposed to keep guys from doing it.

      • Darkoestrada - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:56 PM

        I’d agree if this was a simple case where a player tests positive and must be suspended. However, this is a situation where the suspensions are based on some questionable evidence and it will clearly take a lengthy appeals process to come to a final decision.

    • elmo - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:21 PM

      Agreed, they should do it after the World Series to give the process a chance to play out. Doing it now not only hurts the players involved, it hurts the teams. Also for fans and the media, it’s a distraction during the second half. MLB seems to be timing this for maximum negative PR.

    • chip56 - Jul 9, 2013 at 11:09 PM

      The CBA doesn’t limit suspensions to positive tests; players and owners agreed to it.

      In other words, tough titties.

  10. wpjohnson - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:07 PM

    Quit talking and get it done.

  11. brewcrewfan54 - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:19 PM

    Either suspend guys or don’t but for crying out loud quit making it possible for these stupid half stories, maybe its going to happen maybe its not shit from constantly happening. Screw you MLB and ESPN.

  12. Santi - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:27 PM

    BOGGLES THE MIND that fans still try to defend this turd.

    • clemente2 - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:56 PM

      I know, Selig is a jerk.

  13. gammagammahey - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:40 PM

    Trying to double the suspension for lying takes some real cajones on MLB’s part. Or some really, really bad legal advice.

  14. cackalackyank - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:43 PM

    “Hey A-rod, great job rehabbing that hip, we really missed you here in Da-bronx for the first 90 games of the year, oh btw don’t unpack JUST yet. See it seems you’re suspended until next May. Have a nice winter.”…from Brain Cahman’s Twitter on July 20.

    • cackalackyank - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:45 PM

      Edit function- *Brian Cashman’s

      • tfbuckfutter - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:51 PM

        Good thing you cleared that up or no one would know who the hell you were talking about.

      • cackalackyank - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:09 PM

        Sorry, but that sadistic 4th grade English teacher still give’s me nightmare’s. Had nothing to do with clarification…just self preservation instinct. Do not want to be visited by that Freddy Kruger-esque educator from my past as I sleep tonight.

    • daveitsgood - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:54 PM

      I think that’s more that 140 characters.

      • cackalackyank - Jul 9, 2013 at 8:00 PM

        Oh right that’s a translation. Cashman’s tweet actually will read “A-Rod should go the f***home until May”

      • daveitsgood - Jul 9, 2013 at 8:01 PM

        Much better and more Cashmanlike

  15. unclearnie - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:57 PM

    Lets make the punishment worthwhile. Have their teams forfeit all games they played in. After that, the teams will have incentive to make sure their players are clean.

  16. historiophiliac - Jul 9, 2013 at 6:58 PM

    Sigh. This thing has shifted from foreplay to tease.

  17. kevjones75 - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    C’mon MLB, if you have the evidence, suspend. Don’t wait for the All-Star Break. Get on with your witch hunt. If they go through with these suspensions, I will cease to be a fan of Major League Baseball. The way they are handling it is horrible with this Bosch guy.

  18. cdeangelus - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    What concerns me most about this is that there are, supposedly, 20 people who they have proof of using PEDs, but they don’t have failed tests for these people (except Braun, but that’s fruit from a poisonous tree.)

    So then, that means there’s 20 people, in MLB right now, that are using or have used, but beat the drug testing system? Doesn’t that make it reasonable to assume there are even more people in MLB right now, that are using or have used, and are currently beating the drug testing system?

    This seems to indict the effectiveness of the MLB Drug Testing system. Doesn’t that have pretty huge implications/ramifications?

  19. maruzicho - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:09 PM

    When you do drugs to play you have to pay. To use drugs to be a role model to even children is disturbing and disgusting. All the fans and children think that as long as you don’t get caught you can cheat your way to the big leagues. Obviously we can see why this players stats have lowered tremendously.

  20. banpeds - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:20 PM

    Suspensions are coming next week after the AS game and there will be a few big unknown names getting suspended. MLB has so much real documented proof on these guys it is not even funny. check the court records if you want to see for yourself how many people have cooperated and not just Tony B and Porter fisher. If any of the players appeal, they probably will never play again as no team would touch them. Almost all of them will take their medicine and not appeal and be back playing for the last 20 or so games this year. Bruan and Arod – lifetime bans please….

  21. barkleyblows - Jul 9, 2013 at 7:31 PM

    Come on MLB, wait till next year!!!!

  22. blarry21 - Jul 9, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    What a witch hunt. 100 games is ridiculous. Even though Braun was presumed guilty and got off on a technicality, he wasn’t disciplined for it. How can you skip the first penalty? Only in baseball. The same baseball, mind you, that knowingly allowed their players to juice in the late 90’s in a cheap effort to win back their fan base via the long ball.

  23. jssgriffi - Jul 9, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    Darkoestrada, don’t you realize the reason they would doing during the second half if the season? They want this to effect the teams. That way teams and general managers will think twice about signing a player they might suspect is on steroids or known for doing steroids. That is how you start weeding out the players that do it and deter others from even wanting to because no teams will want them. Unless a team is ok with paying someone tons of money and having them miss 50-100 games a year.

  24. barkleyblows - Jul 9, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    Hopefully Bud gets this done. I’ll have even more respect for him if he does.

  25. shmee194 - Jul 9, 2013 at 9:25 PM

    IS AROD an above average baseball player ? I say he wasn’t in last postseason, and if that’s what he’s going to be he is awful…. Here comes the venom .

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