Skip to content

Ryan Braun had dinner with sample-collector Dino Laurenzi, they have “made amends”

Nov 27, 2013, 12:01 PM EDT

Ryan Braun Getty new Getty Images

As noted earlier, Ryan Braun participated in a charity food drive today and afterward spoke to the media. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel has a transcript of his comments here.

If you’re looking for frank talk and Braun falling on his sword you’re not going to get it. There’s a lot of “let’s just look to the future and learn from our mistakes” stuff that never satisfies anyone. But he did mention one thing of note:

Have you apologized to Dino Laurenzi, Jr., or made any payments to him?

“I have not made any payments to him. I’ve had some really productive and positive conversations with him. The Laurenzi family was actually gracious and kind enough to have my fiancée Larisa and I over to their house for dinner last night, and we had some really good conversation. We’ve made amends and I think we’re both excited to be able to move forward and put this behind us.”

The subject of Laurenzi —  the man who collected the urine sample from Braun in 2011 and around whose handling of the sample Braun based his ultimately successful appeal — has long been one around which Braun-haters have rallied. It started when Braun made mention of Laurenzi — though not by name — at his spring 2012 press conference talking about the appeal of his drug suspension. Since then, people have accused Braun of ruining Laurenzi’s life, getting him fired, slandering him and number of other things which have served to destroy or harm the guy.

And, to be clear: Braun was wrong to say anything public about Laurenzi at all. But the characterization of what Braun did to or even said about Laurenzi has been so far over the top that it has become laughable. People have equated Braun to Lance Armstrong, who actually sued people and had them fired for opposing his lies. They’ve suggested that Braun is legally liable to Laurenzi, when there is no rational basis for a defamation case as a result of what he said. They’ve said that Braun should pay the guy reparations of some non-specific sort. Penance for a man against whom Braun has sinned.  It’s all been way too much.

I think people did this because in Laurenzi they had a victim of sorts. Or thought they did. An actual person they could use to cast PED users’ transgressions in concrete and horrible terms. This was irresistible given how hard it is to argue about the often gray area ethics and morals of PED-use in sports and how hard it is to keep consistent when slamming some baseball players for cheating in one way but not slamming others for cheating in other ways.  But a real human victim of an evil-doing steroid user? Who can argue against that?

Well, It seems Laurenzi himself can. If Braun is right, the past is the past. If Laurenzi’s silence for the past couple of years is any indication, the whole situation, however unpleasant it may have been, was not the stuff of outrage and legal action. A jerk lied about him publicly, but his life went on. And now he has found it within himself to break bread with the guy and have dinner.

Maybe that doesn’t satisfy everyone. Maybe we’ll hear commentary later today suspecting that Braun manipulated Laurenzi into helping Braun with a shameful P.R. offensive. For my part, though, I’m willing to say that this is all over if the people actually involved in it all are saying it.

Latest Posts
  1. Settling the Score: Friday’s results

    May 23, 2015, 8:57 AM EDT

    The Kansas City Royals' Kendrys Morales is congratulated after a three-run home run in the first inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., on Friday, May 22, 2015. (John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/TNS via Getty Images) Getty Images

    A quick recap of a busy Friday around MLB, including the rolling Royals.

  2. Video: Mike Trout makes a ridiculous slide to beat the tag at third base

    May 22, 2015, 11:59 PM EDT

    Mike Trout Mike Trout

    Mike Trout is pretty good at this baseball thing.

  3. Marlins place Henderson Alvarez and Mat Latos on the disabled list

    May 22, 2015, 11:40 PM EDT

    Henderson Alvarez Henderson Alvarez

    Bad news for the reeling Marlins: starters Mat Latos and Henderson Alvarez both will take at least a couple of weeks off due to injuries.

  4. Ichiro Suzuki passes Babe Ruth on the all-time hits list

    May 22, 2015, 11:05 PM EDT

    Ichiro Suzuki Ichiro Suzuki

    Ichiro Suzuki may be close to the end of a brilliant career, but he’s not done moving up baseball’s all-time leaderboards.

  5. Video: Bryce Harper ties for MLB lead in homers, Nelson Cruz quickly unties (again)

    May 22, 2015, 10:25 PM EDT

    Bryce Harper Bryce Harper

    Nelson Cruz kept pace with Bryce Harper, taking back the MLB lead in home runs shortly after losing it.

  6. Billy Beane: “I’m not trading [Stephen] Vogt. Period.”

    May 22, 2015, 9:35 PM EDT

    Stephen Vogt Stephen Vogt

    Stephen Vogt has been baseball’s best-hitting catcher and GM Billy Beane plans to hold onto him.

  7. Video: Athletics closer Sean Doolittle gets some media training

    May 22, 2015, 8:40 PM EDT

    Sean Doolittle Sean Doolittle

    Athletes aren’t born with an ability to speak with the media. We got a look into a media coaching session between Athletics closer Sean Doolittle and girlfriend Eireann Dolan.

  8. Dodgers acquire Eric Surkamp from the White Sox

    May 22, 2015, 7:51 PM EDT

    Eric Surkamp Eric Surkamp

    The Dodgers added some pitching depth on Friday, acquiring pitcher Eric Surkamp from the White Sox.

  9. White Sox push back Carlos Rodon’s next start

    May 22, 2015, 7:45 PM EDT

    Carlos Rodon Carlos Rodon

    The White Sox are managing Carlos Rodon’s workload so they pushed the lefty’s start back from Monday.

  10. Coco Crisp likely headed to the disabled list, but will avoid surgery

    May 22, 2015, 6:55 PM EDT

    Coco Crisp Coco Crisp

    Coco Crisp will go back on the disabled list, but has chosen against having career-ending surgery.

  11. Mets to utilize a six-man rotation after Dillon Gee returns Saturday

    May 22, 2015, 6:05 PM EDT

    Dillon Gee Dillon Gee

    The Mets appear to be heading towards using a six-man rotation after Dillon Gee returns on Saturday.

  12. A Rays affiliate planned, and then cancelled, “A-Rod Juice Box” night

    May 22, 2015, 4:47 PM EDT

    Alex Rodriguez Getty Images

    The Yankees firmly believe that the only people allowed to disparage Alex Rodriguez are the Yankees.

  13. Red Sox call up Rusney Castillo, demote Jackie Bradley Jr.

    May 22, 2015, 3:45 PM EDT

    Rusney Castillo AP AP

    Castillo is starting tonight in right field.

  14. Casey Janssen is healthy, ready to make his Nationals debut

    May 22, 2015, 2:50 PM EDT

    Casey Janssen Getty Images

    Janssen was signed for $5 million to replace Tyler Clippard as the Nationals’ primary setup man.

  15. Barry Bonds would like to see you smile

    May 22, 2015, 2:30 PM EDT

    Bonds

    When I see you smile, Barry, I can face the world. You know I can do anything. When I see you smile, I see a ray of light.

  16. Will Smith suspended for eight games for the foreign substance on his arm

    May 22, 2015, 1:30 PM EDT

    will smith substance arm

    But Major League Baseball’s silliness about these kinds of infractions, however, will continue on unabated.

  17. Quote of the Day: Freddie Freeman inadvertently illustrates the silliness of the foreign substance rules

    May 22, 2015, 11:03 AM EDT

    Will Smith Getty Images

    Paraphrased: “Smith should be way less obvious about the fact that he’s trying to keep us safe!”

  18. Blue Jays shut down rookie Devon Travis with shoulder injury

    May 22, 2015, 10:47 AM EDT

    devon travis getty Getty Images

    Travis has been a huge bright spot for Toronto this season.

  19. Baseball needs beer girls. And a few other things.

    May 22, 2015, 10:30 AM EDT

    Tokyo Dome

    At least that’s what Molly Knight reports from Japan, and I’m inclined to agree.

Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. D. Travis (3905)
  2. J. Hamilton (3397)
  3. R. Castillo (3255)
  4. J. Garcia (3212)
  5. L. McCullers (3157)
  1. H. Ryu (2975)
  2. J. Reyes (2963)
  3. C. Dickerson (2952)
  4. Y. Puig (2928)
  5. B. Harper (2881)