Skip to content

Ryan Braun’s suspension may be the easiest of them all: looking at the next Biogenesis targets

Jul 23, 2013, 8:23 AM EDT

nelson cruz ap AP

Ryan Braun‘s suspension was first and, as the alleged public enemy number one — or two — of Major League Baseball, may eventually be seen as the most significant.  But at the moment it sort of seems like small potatoes, all things considered.

Why? Because the Brewers season was already effectively over and it will all end for Braun and his team after the season ends.  There are other Biogenesis suspensions, however, which will have a much bigger and potentially longer-lasting impact.

The ones to watch: Bartolo Colon, Jhonny Peralta, Nelson Cruz, all of whom are reported to be in Major League’s sights, all of whom are playing for playoff contenders. Depending on what the league makes of Gio Gonzalez‘s passing mention on the list, the Nationals could be affected too. Colon, depending on how the league views his inclusion vis-a-vis last year’s positive drug test, could be facing second offender discipline.

Do these players pull a Ryan Braun and take their medicine now? If so, they will deprive their teammates of key cogs just as the playoff stretch drive gets underway. Do they appeal? If so, they risk greater penalties, one assumes, legal costs and the likelihood that any discipline ultimately stretches into next year.

Can the A’s replace Colon in the rotation? Who plays shortstop for the Tigers if Peralta is gone? Nelson Cruz hit a big homer for the Rangers last night. Who is their deep threat with him gone?

Those are all less-sexy topics than bad boy Ryan Braun or badder boy Alex Rodriguez getting popped. But they have far greater actual baseball implications.

  1. natslady - Jul 23, 2013 at 8:31 AM

    Nats season is tanking fast. I’m not saying it’s over, but pretty close. When you are firing your hitting coach and your manager is walking out of a presser after a reporter asks if he’s quitting, that ain’t good. Still, I hope Gio’s not guilty. I hope that a lot.

    • voteforno6 - Jul 23, 2013 at 8:38 AM

      Gio’s involvement looks incidental more than anything, at least judging by the documents that were printed by the Miami New Times. As for the rest of that – well, the reporter in question was Boswell…and it was a legitimate question.

    • nbjays - Jul 23, 2013 at 8:39 AM

      I sympathize, natslady. I know how much it hurts to see your team, with all that talent and potential, go down the tubes (see my Blue Jays this season). At least you have the Mets and Feesh in your division, which act as a bit of a buffer against the basement.

  2. unclemosesgreen - Jul 23, 2013 at 8:34 AM

    The first rat to flip always gets the cheese.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Jul 23, 2013 at 9:30 AM

      Is that translated from the mother tongue?

      • unclemosesgreen - Jul 23, 2013 at 9:34 AM

        It’s just the prime rule of interrogation.

    • indaburg - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:01 AM

      The second rat gets the cheese. The first rat dies.

      • historiophiliac - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:22 AM

        No, no, you use the cheese to get the rats to turn on each other so it goes all Mickey Fight Club in here.

      • unclemosesgreen - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:27 AM

        My traps kill the first rat and every successive rat until they all learn to hate cheese.

      • indaburg - Jul 23, 2013 at 12:43 PM

        Memo to self: do not take cheese from unclemoses.

      • unclemosesgreen - Jul 23, 2013 at 3:42 PM

        not if you’re a rat ;)

  3. thinkfirstthenspeak - Jul 23, 2013 at 8:40 AM

    Craig,
    Does anyone have the actual list of the players involved? I remember hearing they number about 20, but I’ve never seen more than 8-10.

  4. brockw82 - Jul 23, 2013 at 8:41 AM

    Sights Craig…from one JD to another lol

    • bfunk1978 - Jul 23, 2013 at 9:17 AM

      Junior Detective?

  5. 13arod - Jul 23, 2013 at 8:44 AM

    Mlb said they wernt going to suspened melky or colon because they served there suspoinson last year

    • bfunk1978 - Jul 23, 2013 at 9:17 AM

      Where did they say that?

      • samu0034 - Jul 23, 2013 at 9:29 AM

        I don’t remember reading it anywhere either, but it would certainly seem to me that Melky and Colon were caught and punished last year, and it would be appropriate for them to appeal any further suspension for what seemingly is the same violation.

      • blabidibla - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:12 AM

        They didn’t say that, but both of these players have served suspensions already for the time period in question by most reports. So MLB would need to prove a second case of PED use, not associated with the last suspension.

  6. number42is1 - Jul 23, 2013 at 9:01 AM

    Good morning Craig,

    Not sure if you are going to read this or not but I have a question, and since i do not do the twitter this is the only way i can think of to ask it.

    Why was Braun suspended for what amounts to 65 games? How come he was not suspended for the required 50 games given that this is his first official offense? Do they count offenses based on how many times you injected/used banned substance or is it based on getting caught? Why would he cut a deal (assuming that he did) for a number of games that is more than what he should have gotten?

    I appreciate you answering this if you have time.

    • Tim OShenko - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:25 AM

      Not Craig, but I’ll take a stab at answering your question.

      A while back, there was talk of suspending the players on the Biogenesis list for 100 games apiece – 50 for using, 50 for lying about it. It’s possible that, in this case, the extra 15 games are the punishment for lying. Maybe it would have been 100, and Braun pleaded the case down by agreeing to go without a fight. That’s the best reasoning I can think of for the situation.

    • bsbiz - Jul 23, 2013 at 11:12 AM

      The 65 games are effectively a negotiated plea bargain between Braun and MLB.

    • number42is1 - Jul 23, 2013 at 11:18 AM

      Right but that does not make sense seeing as how there are rules in place for these things. I ended up emailing Craig and here is what he responded with.

      “It’s hard to say. Last week the union said that “just cause” suspensions — meaning those not coming from drug tests — aren’t subject to the usual 50-game rule. That’s odd and doesn’t square with what the Joint Drug Agreement says, but it appears to be what led to this. Some agreement or understanding between the league and the union.

      It appears as though Braun was given a first time offense with a 15-game bump for whatever lies MLB believes he told last year. At least that’s how most people are reading it. And given that he’s not fighting that, one can assume we won’t know for sure what went into it.

      Best,

      Craig

  7. heyblueyoustink - Jul 23, 2013 at 9:02 AM

    ” Ryan Braun‘s suspension was first and, as the alleged public enemy number one — or two — of Major League Baseball ”

    I think, with his admission at this point, you can remove the “alleged” label away from him.

    • historiophiliac - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:38 AM

      Do you think somewhere there’s an NSA agent giggling to himself because HE ALREADY KNEW!

      • unclemosesgreen - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:48 AM

        If PRISM starts giggling we have bigger problems.

      • heyblueyoustink - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:48 AM

        Of course there is. If you had access to the data, as a human being, could *you* resist?

        Hell, I’d basically be listening in on anyone I follow on twitter.

      • historiophiliac - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

        This may surprise you, but I’ve worked a number of jobs with access to sensitive data and not looked at it (didn’t want to). I’ve even returned info that was mistakenly submitted to me that I shouldn’t have gotten.

        That said, I probably would’ve read incriminating evidence on Braun if it was brought to my intention, just b/c it’s him and all that. I wouldn’t fish through all his stuff on the side to find it though. I’m not that curious about him.

  8. chip56 - Jul 23, 2013 at 10:08 AM

    Of all the guys named (so far) I think Bartolo Colon makes the most sense as a guy who would obviously appeal a suspension. At his age he has nothing to lose by going the distance on this.

    If he accepts a suspension now, his career is effectively over.
    If he appeals then he probably pitches the rest of the year and possibly the post season before judgement is handed down. If he loses the appeal he can sit the 100 games and sign a minor league deal to help a contender in the second half if he wants to or he can just retire.

    The other players in playoff hunts, Cruz, Gio, Peralta – those will be interesting.

    Alex makes the most sense to take a deal – if the reports are true that MLB has more on him than they did on Braun then I don’t see how Alex could gamble so much of his money on an appeal if there’s an offer on the table.

  9. craggt - Jul 23, 2013 at 12:09 PM

    Isn’t Colon’s defense arguably the easiest? It’s reasonable to assume that when he tested positive last year he got the drugs he tested positive for he got from Biogenesis. Assuming there aren’t any records from Biogenesis from beyond when he was suspended last year wouldn’t suspending him again just be suspending him twice for the same action? Double Jeopardy right?

  10. b453841l - Jul 23, 2013 at 4:29 PM

    With Nelson Cruz gone, Mr. [PED] Clean, Manny Ramirez will be the Rangers’ new deep threat…

  11. theskinsman - Jul 29, 2013 at 5:57 AM

    If Cano is nailed, it would be catastrophic for the borg. Not that they’re doing anything this year anyway. Hopefully this happens soon, so teams have a moment to retool after the current crop of cheats are benched.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Featured video

Teams searching for trade deadline impact
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. H. Street (3736)
  2. C. Lee (2927)
  3. H. Ramirez (2687)
  4. T. Tulowitzki (2673)
  5. Y. Puig (2555)
  1. C. Headley (2449)
  2. T. Walker (2415)
  3. B. Belt (2320)
  4. M. Trout (2190)
  5. D. Price (2156)