Someone needs to tell Ryan Braun to shut his mouth, walk away and be happy that he got off.
Regardless of guilt or innocence, he needs to keep quiet.
The transcript of his statement and question and answer session with reporters show that he’s not going to do that and the only end result will be Braun making a bad situation worse.
If Braun is going to imply that the tester was involved in somehow spiking his urine sample then he’s treading across a dangerous line that’s not only going to promote backlash from MLB itself, but also the testing service whose business hinges on their appearance of propriety in how they do their jobs.
You can read about the Braun allegations and the tester here on NYTimes.com.
To think that the administrator of the test would spike the sample for whatever reason is ignoring several facts—his tenure working for the company; that he would be subject to losing his job and could presumably go to jail while opening his employers up to a lawsuit and being run out of business.
Each suggestion is absurd individually. The statement about the chaperone for the test “just so happen(ing)” to be the administrator’s son as if there was some pre-hatched plot against Ryan Braun is absolutely ridiculous.
When you combine the scope of the post-overturn defense with the conspiracy theories and read them rather than watch Braun’s impassioned insistence upon his innocence, Braun sounds like a paranoid fool.
Braun’s answer regarding the tester during the Q&A following his press conference is equally as idiotic:
Do you believe the test collector tampered with your sample?
“Again, I honestly don’t know what happened to it for that 44-hour period. There are a lot of different things that could have possibly happened. There were a lot of things that we heard about the collection process, the collector and some other people involved in the process that have certainly been concerning to us. But beyond that, as I’ve dealt with this situation, I know what it’s like to be wrongly accused of something and for me to wrongly accuse somebody else of something wouldn’t help anybody.”
Considering Braun’s and his attorney’s decision to use the storing of the sample in the administrator’s home as a basis for their appeal, the above non-accusation accusation is along the lines of a “when did you stop beating your wife?” style question.
This is not the road Braun wants to take.
The biggest mistake isn’t the crime itself. The biggest mistake is when the accused get acquitted and decide that getting away with it isn’t enough and they have to clear their names.
They don’t know when to quit while they’re ahead.
This “clearing my good name” stuff is done for the sake of marketing and maintaining the concept of cleanliness, true or not.
I have no idea what Braun did or didn’t do, but now he’s going so far out with proclamations of innocence that he’s only going to do more damage to himself and increase the scrutiny surrounding him.
The hardest thing to do for an athlete is to accept that he can’t competitively win a battle like this and that he needs to leave it alone.
Braun got off on the charge of the failed drug test and it was the right decision on the part of the arbitrator, but now he’s walking right back into trouble by conscious stupidity rather than poor timing and bad luck.