Skip to content

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

Nov 27, 2013, 12:01 PM EST

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. Padres re-sign Josh Johnson

    Dec 22, 2014, 2:49 PM EST

    San Diego Padres Photo Day Getty Images

    Another comeback attempt in San Diego.

  2. They’re playing a football game in Marlins Park

    Dec 22, 2014, 2:37 PM EST

    Houston Astros v Miami Marlins Getty Images

    And it looks weird. But then again, everything looks weird there, doesn’t it?

  3. Doc Gooden: “Letter to my Younger Self”

    Dec 22, 2014, 2:08 PM EST

    Doc Gooden

    We could probably all write one of these. But ours would be a lot less useful to our younger selves than Doc Gooden’s is to his younger self.

  4. The Pirates win the bidding for Jung-Ho Kang

    Dec 22, 2014, 12:44 PM EST

    jung-ho kang getty Getty Images

    The Pirates have 30 days to reach an agreement with Kang or else he goes back to his KBO team.

  5. Nationals sign Heath Bell

    Dec 22, 2014, 12:16 PM EST

    heath bell getty Getty Images

    Bell was an All-Star as recently as 2011.

  6. Revolution, expropriation and the Havana Sugar Kings

    Dec 22, 2014, 11:54 AM EST

    Sugar Kings

    The ultimate minor league “where are they now?”

  7. Troy Tulowitzki gets trade rumor updates from the Rockies

    Dec 22, 2014, 10:47 AM EST

    Troy Tulowitzki AP

    “You see what’s going on, but …”

  8. I wish Marshawn Lynch played baseball

    Dec 22, 2014, 10:34 AM EST

    Screen Shot 2014-12-22 at 10.34.03 AM Getty Images

    Who will tell us that they’re “takin’ it one game at a time” now?!

  9. Phil Hughes signs a three-year extension with the Twins

    Dec 22, 2014, 9:04 AM EST

    Phil Hughes AP

    He’ll be under team control through 2019.

  10. “Baseball love, Cuban style”

    Dec 22, 2014, 8:41 AM EST

    Cuba

    Taped baseballs and Yankees fans.

  11. Wanna buy John Lackey’s House?

    Dec 22, 2014, 7:49 AM EST

    Screen Shot 2014-12-22 at 7.38.07 AM

    Understated, it is not.

  12. Padres planning to hang on to their recently-acquired outfielders

    Dec 21, 2014, 11:10 PM EST

    wil myers getty Getty Images

    Wil Myers was rumored to be a potential target for the Phillies in a trade involving Cole Hamels, but it turns out the Padres plan to hang on to him.

  13. Twins sign Wil Ledezma to a minor league deal

    Dec 21, 2014, 10:21 PM EST

    Wil Ledezma Getty Images

    Wil Ledezma will attempt to return to the major leagues with the Twins after signing a minor league deal.

  14. Giants’ training staff preparing an update on Marco Scutaro

    Dec 21, 2014, 9:55 PM EST

    Marco Scutaro Reuters Reuters

    Marco Scutaro’s 2014 season was tarnished by a chronic back ailment. The Giants’ training staff is preparing an update on the 39-year-old and it may not be good news.

  15. Rob Refsnyder, Jose Pirela to compete for Yankees’ second base job

    Dec 21, 2014, 8:50 PM EST

    Jose Pirela Jose Pirela

    If spring training were to start today, Yankees GM Brian Cashman would have Rob Refsnyder and Jose Pirela compete for the starting job at second base.

  16. The Padres have talked to the Phillies about Cole Hamels

    Dec 21, 2014, 5:47 PM EST

    cole hamels getty Getty Images

    It makes a lot of sense. And now, it seems, the clubs themselves are starting to talk about it.

  17. Why is John Smoltz a shoo-in for the Hall of Fame?

    Dec 21, 2014, 4:17 PM EST

    (FILES) This 25 August, 2002, file photo

    Is Smoltz really so different than Curt Schilling and Mike Mussina?

Featured video

Cubs shore up rotation with Jon Lester
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. W. Myers (5655)
  2. M. Kemp (3208)
  3. C. McGehee (3007)
  4. J. Kang (2998)
  5. W. Middlebrooks (2996)
  1. J. Upton (2942)
  2. M. Morse (2268)
  3. A. Rios (2071)
  4. J. Peavy (1986)
  5. J. Shields (1920)