'We all feel a little bit cheated': Angry players around majors sound off on Braun suspension

  • Article by: MIKE FITZPATRICK , AP Sports Writer
  • Updated: July 23, 2013 - 12:06 PM

They felt sick, angry, cheated, deceived.

Not only did Ryan Braun let down scores of baseball fans Monday, he riled up players all around the majors.

The guys who used to be in his corner. The guys who make up the union membership.

"Watching him talk right now makes me sick," Skip Schumaker of the Los Angeles Dodgers said. "I have an autographed Braun jersey in my baseball room that I'll be taking down. I don't want my son identifying what I've worked so hard to get to and work so hard to have — I don't want him comparing Braun to me."

The Milwaukee Brewers slugger accepted a 65-game suspension Monday for unspecified "violations" of baseball's drug program and labor contract.

Just last year, the 2011 NL MVP dodged a 50-game penalty when an arbitrator overturned his positive test for elevated testosterone because the urine sample had been improperly handled.

Then he held a news conference at spring training in Phoenix and read a defiant statement, insisting he was innocent and "the truth" was on his side.

Jason Bay watched it on television, just like everyone else.

"I think for me what makes me mad," the Seattle outfielder said, "basically it just kills all the credibility of anybody."

Reaction poured in after Major League Baseball banned Braun without pay for the rest of the season and the postseason, the beginning of sanctions involving players reportedly tied to a Florida clinic accused of distributing performance-enhancing drugs.

Plenty of it was pretty harsh.

"I think everybody's frustrated, especially the players. I think we all feel a little bit cheated," Mariners pitcher Joe Saunders said.

Schumaker thinks Braun should hand over his MVP award to Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp, who finished second in the 2011 balloting.

"In my opinion, he should be suspended — lifetime ban. One strike, you're out. It's enough. It's ridiculous," Schumaker said. "He lied to a lot of people. I was convinced, after that MVP, that he didn't do it."

Braun, struggling through an injury-plagued season, will miss Milwaukee's final 65 games, costing him about $3 million of his $8.5 million salary. But his punishment probably won't affect the Brewers' playoff chances much — they were last in the NL Central at 41-56, already far out of wild-card contention.

"I talked to a lot of the guys and we think the penalties aren't harsh enough," Saunders said. "I think it should have been a year's suspension, at least. Just my take on it. I don't get why guys have to do that stuff."

Braun issued a statement Monday saying he's not perfect and realizes now that he has made some mistakes. He apologized "to anyone I may have disappointed" and said he was happy to have the matter behind him "once and for all."

But that doesn't mean there's no fallout for others in the game.

"It's a sad day," Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "It's a black eye when something like this happens."

New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia, Braun's former teammate in Milwaukee, said he was shocked.

"I never would have thought it, but I guess you never know," Sabathia explained.

Some players were more forgiving.

"He stepped up. It's just like when you get a ticket, a speeding ticket," Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter said. "You know you were speeding. You get a ticket and you go and you do your time or pay your speeding ticket, then you're doing what you're supposed to do. That's what Braunie is doing. Everybody makes mistakes. It takes a man to forgive him. If you don't forgive him, then are you a man?"

Bay thinks Braun could have handled his situation differently.

"If you look at the guys who have done stuff and just come out and admit it, a lot of guys don't remember who those guys were," Bay said. "But the guys who run up and down and say, 'No, no,' and then it gets drug through the mud 10 times worse, it makes it tougher on themselves and the rest of us."

It appears more penalties are coming, too.

Braun was one of more than a dozen players targeted by MLB, including injured Yankees star Alex Rodriguez, following a report by Miami New Times in January that they had been connected with Biogenesis of America, a now-closed anti-aging clinic.

"The guys that are cheating or whatever are taking something away from the other players. They're lying to the fans, they're lying to their teammates, they're lying to their GMs, their owners, and they're going to get caught," Angels pitcher C.J. Wilson said.

Braun addressed his stunned Brewers teammates Monday afternoon. Second baseman Rickie Weeks described the slugger as "somber" and "embarrassed."

"I've said all along he doesn't need that stuff to perform," catcher Jonathan Lucroy said. "I don't know why he ever took it."

Lucroy acknowledged he initially felt deceived. But he said Brewers players were supportive, and he forgives Braun.

"I don't think anybody here is going to hold a grudge," Lucroy said. "He was depressed, but at the same time he felt a lot of weight come off his shoulder, come off his chest. That's a tough burden to bear, withholding the truth for so long."

  • related content

  • Video: Ryan Braun suspended for rest of 2013

    Monday July 22, 2013

    Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun was suspended without pay by MLB for the remainder of the 2013 season for violating...

  • Braun suspension: What you need to know

    Tuesday July 23, 2013

    In question-and-answer form, this is a look at the issues and implications of Major League Baseball's suspension of Ryan Braun:____Q:...

  • Fans saddened, disgusted over Braun suspension

    Tuesday July 23, 2013

    Milwaukee Brewers fans are expressing disappointment, sadness and disgust that MVP Ryan Braun has been suspended for violating baseball's drug program.

  • Players react to Braun suspension

    Tuesday July 23, 2013

    Ryan Braun let down scores of fans with his suspension for violating baseball's drug program. And, he also drew the ire of players around the majors.

  • File-Milwaukee Brewers' Ryan Braun reacts after striking out after pin...

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
Final123456789RHE
Minnesota «000003030671
Baltimore000000301461
@Ballpark Replay
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box
W:P.Hughes(15-9) L:K.Gausman(7-7) S:G.Perkins (33)
HR: MIN- None BAL- N.Cruz (36), N.Hundley (4)

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Mets - LP: J. Familia 6 FINAL
Miami - WP: A. Ramos 9
Philadelphia - WP: C. Hamels 7 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: J. Teheran 0
Boston - LP: B. Badenhop 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay - WP: G. Balfour 4
Minnesota - WP: P. Hughes 6 FINAL
Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 4
Pittsburgh - LP: G. Cole 4 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: S. Maness 5
Milwaukee - LP: J. Nelson 2 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Turner 4
Detroit - WP: D. Price 12 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: C. Kluber 1
Seattle - LP: C. Young 1 FINAL
Oakland - WP: J. Hammel 6
San Francisco - WP: J. Affeldt 4 FINAL
Colorado - LP: C. Friedrich 2
Arizona - LP: T. Cahill 1 FINAL
San Diego - WP: T. Ross 3
San Francisco - LP: S. Romo 9 FINAL
Colorado - WP: L. Hawkins 10
Washington - WP: G. Gonzalez 6 FINAL
Los Angeles - LP: R. Hernandez 4
Texas - LP: C. Lewis 3 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: Y. Ventura 4
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
Buffalo 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
New Orleans 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Atlanta
Minnesota 9/7/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Cleveland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Jacksonville 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Oakland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
Cincinnati 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Washington 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Tennessee 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
New England 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Tampa Bay
San Francisco 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Dallas
Indianapolis 9/7/14 7:30 PM
Denver
Utah State 7 FINAL
Tennessee 38
SMU 0 FINAL
(10) Baylor 45
Miami-Florida 13 FINAL
Louisville 31
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(7) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(22) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(14) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(16) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(2) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
(25) Washington
(15) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(11) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(18) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(8) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(19) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(6) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(15) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(13) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(21) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(5) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(7) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Indiana 84 FINAL
Chicago 86
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How sure are you that the Twins are on the road to improving?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close