Skip to content

What happens if Ryan Braun tests positive next year? Or in 2017?

Jul 22, 2013, 7:42 PM EDT

Bud Selig AP

One thing that is clear from the Ryan Braun suspension is that it was, in some form or another, the product of horse trading. A settlement of sorts given how both sides got something good out of this, all things considered.

But there is still an open question here: is this considered Braun’s first offense? Second? Is it off that paradigm altogether? Where in the heck are we now, and what in the heck happens if Braun dances with the PED devil at some point in the future?

The uncertainty stems from not just the punishment, but from the statements of Michael Weiner last week when he said that “just cause” punishment is not subject to the 50-100-life scale. That did not seem to jibe with the words of the JDA which seemed to include that scale in both testing positives and just cause situations, but that is what the man said. And, at least based on the number of games, that’s what Braun got.

It’s likely that other Biogenesis players will get similar deals (or punishments, depending on your point of view). Are they outside of the 50-100-life thing too? Or does this count as a first offense and the next one counts for 100 games? And what if the deal, say, in the case of A-Rod, is 103 games? Where do we go from there? How does the standard apply?

This is not a theoretical question. This set of circumstances could happen again. Or, like Manny Ramirez, we could have “retirements” that are rescinded followed by reductions in discipline. As time goes on the system is going to get messier and messier with precedent, as all systems do.

In light of that, I feel it’s important for Major League Baseball to clarify how the Biogenesis suspensions fit into the overall discipline regime of the JDA. For a system to work it has to have transparency. And, though it’s pretty clearly necessitated by the murkiness of the Biogenesis case, at the moment we’re lacking some transparency.

Latest Posts
  1. What’s in store for the Royals this winter?

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:49 PM EDT

    Dayton Moore, Ned Yost Dayton Moore, Ned Yost

    A look at the tough calls the Royals will have to make following their World Series run.

  2. Flashback to 2010: Everyone was worried about Madison Bumgarner

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:16 PM EDT

    Madison Bumgarner AP

    “He’s 20 years old. We think a lot of him and he has a bright future.”

  3. Marlins will pick up Jeff Mathis’ option for 2015

    Oct 30, 2014, 11:48 AM EDT

    Jeff Mathis AP AP

    Mathis a career .196 hitter and has never topped a .650 OPS in nine seasons as a big leaguer.

  4. Royals likely to decline Billy Butler’s option, but will he re-sign for less?

    Oct 30, 2014, 11:17 AM EDT

    Kansas City Royals v Chicago White Sox Reuters

    He’s the longest-tenured Royal, but his production has slipped.

  5. Royals planned to use Danny Duffy in the playoff rotation, but he was hurt

    Oct 30, 2014, 10:35 AM EDT

    Danny Duffy Getty Images

    “Obviously, he definitely would have been one of our starters.”

  6. Giants on re-signing Sandoval: ‘We’ll do the best we can’

    Oct 30, 2014, 10:20 AM EDT

    cd0ymzcznguwzdbhnduynddiytjhm2yyzthlmtjjotqwyyznpwqznwrhnzixzjqwmty2zjnmmda2odg3mwu0yjrmngqy AP

    Asked about his free agency, Panda only says: ā€œIā€™m just going to celebrate.ā€

  7. Bochy’s championship resume ranks among game’s best

    Oct 30, 2014, 9:50 AM EDT

    Bruce Bochy Bruce Bochy

    Bochy has navigated the path to World Series crowns in 2010, 2012 and now 2014. In the process, the Giants have dispatched 10 consecutive postseason foes.

  8. Only thing Royals can do: Tip cap to Bumgarner

    Oct 30, 2014, 9:20 AM EDT

    Madison Bumgarner Madison Bumgarner

    There was no bitterness as Royals hitters talked about the mastery of Madison Bumgarner in this World Series.

  9. Alex Rodriguez, Barry Bonds celebrate the conclusion of the World Series

    Oct 30, 2014, 7:25 AM EDT

    Alex Rodriguez Getty Images

    History’s Greatest Monsters were happy for different reasons last night.

  10. Inside the Giants’ clubhouse …

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:15 AM EDT

    1bochy getty Getty Images

    The champagne and beer is flowing in the visitors clubhouse at Kauffman Stadium following the Giants’ Game 7 win …

  11. Alex Gordon would have been a dead duck had he tried to score

    Oct 30, 2014, 12:11 AM EDT

    Gordon 1

    A breakdown of Alex Gordon’s two-out hit in the bottom of the ninth.

  12. Video: Pablo Sandoval catches final out in foul territory, Giants win 2014 World Series

    Oct 29, 2014, 11:57 PM EDT

    giants world series getty Getty Images

    Here’s the final out of Wednesday night’s Game 7 that secured the Giants’ eighth World Series title …

  13. Madison Bumgarner named World Series MVP … obviously

    Oct 29, 2014, 11:37 PM EDT

    1bumgarner getty Getty Images

    Madison Bumgarner threw five scoreless innings to close out Game 7 on Wednesday night at Kauffman Stadium and allowed just one run in 21 total frames during the 2014 World Series

  14. Game 7 live blog: The Giants are World Series Champions!

    Oct 29, 2014, 11:20 PM EDT

    Madison Bumgarner Getty Images

    Madison Bumgarner gets the win. And becomes a legend.

  15. Pablo Sandoval sets new postseason hits record

    Oct 29, 2014, 10:55 PM EDT

    pablo sandoval getty giants Getty Images

    Giants ace Madison Bumgarner broke Curt Schilling’s postseason innings record in the bottom of the fifth inning. And now Alex Pavlovic of the San Jose Mercury News shares this nugget …

  16. Madison Bumgarner breaks postseason innings record

    Oct 29, 2014, 10:19 PM EDT

    madison bumgarner getty Getty Images

    Giants ace Madison Bumgarner entered Game 7 of the World Series in the bottom of the fifth inning. He allowed a single to the first batter but got out of that threat and set a new MLB record in the process …

  17. Photo: Joe Panik’s impressive dive and flip

    Oct 29, 2014, 10:01 PM EDT

    joe panik getty AP

    Here’s a cool photo from the Associated Press of the well-executed flip from Giants second baseman Joe Panik that started a huge doubleplay in the bottom of the third inning of World Series Game 7 …

Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. M. Morse (2215)
  2. H. Pence (2146)
  3. Y. Cespedes (2075)
  4. M. Moustakas (1976)
  5. J. Panik (1925)