Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Ryan Braun must be the unluckiest guy on the planet.
First he was accused of failing a drug test just months after winning his National League MVP Award in 2011. Well, he actually wasn't accused. He failed the test. In fact his testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio in the specimen was nearly 20:1, or five times the amount needed for suspension. But the results were thrown out on appeal, because proper protocol was not followed in the days after the test.
Now comes word that one of the people Braun's lawyers consulted during that process was none other than Anthony Bosch, the founder of the Miami-based anti-aging clinic that allegedly provided performance-enhancing drugs to several high-profile baseball players.
Gee whiz. Of all the people to consult. Man, what luck. And just a year after he had already "proved" his innocence.
Of course, Braun had an alibi as to why his named showed up in the records from Biogenesis of America LLC that were obtained by Yahoo Sports!.
"During the course of preparing for my successful appeal last year, my attorneys, who were previously familiar with Tony Bosch, used him as a consultant," Braun said in a statement on Tuesday. "More specifically, he answered questions about T/E ratio and possibilities of tampering with samples.
"There was a dispute over compensation for Bosch's work, which is why my lawyer and I are listed under 'moneys owed' and not on any other list. I have nothing to hide and have never had any other relationship with Bosch. I will fully cooperate with any inquiry into this matter."
You have to hand it to Braun. He has an excuse for everything. It does seem odd, though, that Team Braun couldn't have found a more qualified person than Bosch, who seems to have been quite haphazard with his records. But, then again, who would know more about HGH than the man running what people are calling the East Coast's version of BALCO.
And why were Braun's people "previously familiar" with him?
Now if there is a silver lining for Braun's defense, it is that his name is just listed in documents as saying he owes money, unlike Alex Rodriguez, Melky Cabrera, Nelson Cruz and Gio Gonzalez, all of whom had actual substances by their names.
But, even Manti Te'o thinks this sounds a little fishy.
Braun went hard after Major League Baseball last year when he won his appeal. If he is in fact innocent, it won't be from a lack of an MLB investigation. No stone will be left unturned when it comes to him. That is for sure.
I know I have said this before, but MLB has become Shawshank Prison - not a guilty guy in there. Will there ever be a player who just comes out and says, "Yeah, you got me. I knew it was wrong, but I was trying to get an edge and got caught."
PGA golfer Vijay Singh last week admitted to using deer antler spray, a banned substance under the Tour's Anti-Doping Policy. But he played the old "I didn't know it was banned" card.
MLB players are way past that excuse. They have moved on to flat-out denials at this point. They have teams of lawyers in their employ crafting indefensible defenses. You have to hand it to the MLB players. They have always been one step ahead of the league every step of the way.
It's not the PEDs that are ruining the game, it's the tired excuses that follow. It embarrasses the game every time. Everyone knows players used PEDs and now it's become apparent they continue to use them.
Stop insulting the fans' intelligence.
MLB and commissioner Bud Selig may have been a little late to the party, but they have done an awful lot to try to curtail the use of PEDs. However, it's becoming more apparent it's a losing battle. Once this Biogenesis scandal is over, there will be another one ready to take its place.
And you can bet your bottom dollar that those players will be "innocent" as well.