Now that the dust has began to settle I can write more clearly and
professionally and give the Ryan Braun situation more of a detailed
analysis. I guess we shouldn't be surprised about the suspension. We
live in a world of which lies, fear, controversy, misinformation and
(most importantly) scapegoats and historical inaccuracy creates two
histories existing side-by-side one another where one half of the
population believes one thing and one set of facts and the other half
believes in another set of facts regardless of whether or not the
evidence produces an accurate argument. When someone is caught lying,
people are finally given a convenient scapegoat to point which eases
their confusion not only in sports but in life.
The reason the Ryan Braun saga has and continues fascinates me is
because I see myself in Ryan Braun. 16 years and 3 days ago, I was 17
years old playing baseball for the Menominee (MI) Red Wave high
school baseball team. I had just graduated high school
and, until this point in my life, I loved playing baseball more than
anything. The problem was my body didn't keep up with my dreams of
playing baseball after high school. While other teammates and peers had
hit puberty at the normal time early in high school, unfortunately I
didn't. I tried for two years prior to gain weight as I ate a ton, took
two weight-lifting classes in high school, and ran 2-3 miles every
other day, and tried endlessly to put on some muscle. But, all that happened
was my veins got bigger! I was raised to be moral and self-righteous
and it never once crossed
my mind to take steroids. I did all I could to naturally gain weight
but it was all futile. I've amassed some baseballs in my life from
games I played in and games I've attended. But no baseball means more
to me than the one I got on July 19th, 1997. It was then that I hit my
first home run !!! Yeah, granted, it was during batting practice but
hell it went over the fence in left field !!! When I look at the baseball today it brings back
sentimental thoughts and at the time it was a moral victory to me that
all my work paid off. I didn't cheat, didn't take PEDs, didn't take any
drugs, and on that date (the last high school practice of my life) it
Fast-forward to 2007, when Braun made his debut, the PED-era in
baseball was coming to an end and seeing Braun, Fielder, Hart, Weeks,
and others bring forth a winning team it was mesmerizing watching such
"natural" greats play the game. So when I started the Innocence Page I
believed him, as did many others, because it didn't show. In him, I saw
myself, a guy who despite temptation had on his own developed himself
into one of the most natural hitters I have ever seen. In fact, his
swing is an art form, and watching it the only one who rivals the
beauty of his swing I think is Ken Griffey Jr. So, after seeing the
truthful speech Braun made after he won his appeal, I weighed the
evidence and vehemently stood by what I said on this page. Yes, I had a
lot of time on my hands in between semesters working on my MA in
history and, owning my own domain, figured why not just toss everything
I think down on one page! It was bothersome to me and may others that,
despite all the evidence I had gathered, that some people were still
going to hate. It exemplified what I wrote in the opening paragraph
which is regardless of facts people will believe what their feel. It
was truthiness, as so perfectly defined by Stephen Colbert!
So when on July 22nd, 2013, I'm sitting there watching Intentional Talk
and eating a salad and then all the sudden Chris Rose says there is
breaking news on Ryan Braun and he would be suspended for the rest of
the year! They posted his beyond vague confession where he admitted
making mistakes and I couldn't believe the betrayal, sadness,
frustration, and even hatred I immediately felt towards Braun. What
irritated me the most was that insistence that "the truth is on my
side" was not true. Prior to him being suspended I was open to the
possibility that he was guilty but was probably 95% positive he was
innocent or at least not-guilty. But now, it's exactly the other way
around. Considering my own history and love for the game, I feel
betrayed, mostly because I no longer see myself in Ryan Braun. I see
another guy like Sosa, Bonds, and all the others who cheated themselves
and the game. The thing is, I have pride and honor, the one HR ball
sitting on my fireplace is a testament to what I worked for. Yeah, I
may have sucked, but in 1997 at that point in my life, when I ran out
to retrieve my HR ball when I picked it up I knew I would keep it the
rest of my life because it represented the hard work and dedication I
had put into becoming a player at the time.
Well, enough blabbing, if you have taken the time to read this so far (and
considering what I wrote in the last paragraph you haven't) I thank you.
There are still some questions that I am waiting to have answered.
What was the illegal substance?
What was the "overwhelming" evidence against Braun?
Is there any truth to the lifetime ban rumor?
Why was Braun's statement so vague?
Why didn't he meet with the media?
Plus, there are still things that are just irritating that I also wouldn't mind discussing of getting answered.
Why was Braun always singled out?
Why didn't other players (like A-Rod) get suspended first?
Why did Bosch say previously validate Braun's statement that he only used him as a consultant?
Will we ever see the full story?
IS IT ALL A BIG CONSPIRACY ???!!!
Can we please stop the Aaron Rodgers and Braun relationship stuff? It's
not like they are a same-sex couple! But, yeah, I'll admit I wanna hear
what he says too!
Diamondbacks fans, you did not lose to Ryan Braun in the 2011 playoffs,
you lost to the BREWERS. All things considered, I'm sure at least one
guy on the D-Backs was on PED then too so enough whining.
Finally, seeing he's now guilty, just how many OTHER PLAYERS have taken
PEDs and got away with it. A sad day indeed not just for Braun and Brew
Crew fans, but baseball as a whole. :((
I typed this whole shebang up in one sitting so I'll fix the grammar
and clean it up eventually But, I simply do not know how I will react
next year when spring training
hits and Braun takes the field. In fact, I can already see Braun
turning into the new Brett Favre where he's a love/hate type of guy.
Right now, it's just sad, I am sad, we are all sad, for the man, the
game, and the mythology and sacred history of the game being tarnished.
But, remember, he's one man, it's a team game, sometimes you win,
sometimes you lose, sometimes ... it rains ... think about that for a
minute (yes, a Bull Durham reference). I am a fan of the team and not
the player. If you stop following the Brewers or scapegoat the entire
Brewers organization you are more of a players fan instead of a team
fan. Which, I don't look down upon, because some people are probably
just interested more in players instead of team, so be it.
I don't know how I'll react come 2014. If Braun
stepped to the plate today I don't think I would boo or cheer, I would just shake
my head and cheer on the Brewers (regardless of their record) to victory.
NOTE: I have temporarily removed the
pictures on this page because I was getting hits by the thousands and
my web server was overloading (never mind, traffic has slowed down, I have put them back) !!
BREAKING !!! 4:50 PM JULY
SUSPENDED FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR !!!! AND HE ADMITTED IT
AND APOLOGIZES. EVERYTHING HERE ON THIS PAGE IS NOW MOOT AND I HAVE
LOST ALL RESPECT FOR THE MAN FOREVER AND I HOPE THE BREWERS RELEASE HIS
ASS RIGHT AWAY AND EAT HIS ENTIRE CONTRACT !!
SHIT! I'm getting hits by the second!! I only have a 1MBs upload! AHH WELL, IT WAS FUN PLAYING DEFENSE ATTORNEY FOR A WHILE!
I temporarily removed the images linked! the page should load now!
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