Ryan Braun took the first step in an attempt to win back the good graces of baseball fans late Thursday, issuing an apology in the form of a written statement. Braun admits he used a cream and lozenge to help with a nagging injury and said he was in denial about his use.
Most of it reads like standard apology boilerplate. He did take time to single out urine-collector Dino Laurenzi Jr., who was at the center of the controversy involving Braun’s positive test for elevated testosterone during the 2011 season. Of course, earlier this week there were multiple reports Braun tried to paint Laurenzi, Jr. as an anti-Semite and Cubs fan.
How much the public buys Braun’s act of contrition, is open to debate. Remember this is the same guy who called a press conference after he won his arbitration case back before Spring Training in 2012 basically gloating about this innocence.
Here’s the most pertinent information, detailing his use:
"Here is what happened. During the latter part of the 2011 season, I was dealing with a nagging injury and I turned to products for a short period of time that I shouldn’t have used. The products were a cream and a lozenge which I was told could help expedite my rehabilitation. It was a huge mistake for which I am deeply ashamed and I compounded the situation by not admitting my mistakes immediately. I deeply regret many of the things I said at the press conference after the arbitrator’s decision in February 2012. At that time, I still didn’t want to believe that I had used a banned substance. I think a combination of feeling self righteous and having a lot of unjustified anger led me to react the way I did. I felt wronged and attacked, but looking back now, I was the one who was wrong. I am beyond embarrassed that I said what I thought I needed to say to defend my clouded vision of reality. I am just starting the process of trying to understand why I responded the way I did, which I continue to regret. There is no excuse for any of this. For too long during this process, I convinced myself that I had not done anything wrong. After my interview with MLB in late June of this year, I came to the realization that it was time to come to grips with the truth. I was never presented with baseball’s evidence against me, but I didn’t need to be, because I knew what I had done. I realized the magnitude of my poor decisions and finally focused on dealing with the realities of-and the punishment for-my actions."
Ken Rosenthal has the full statement on Fox Sports.
Odds are, like A-Rod, Braun is booed on his first tour through parks once he’s back in a Brewers uniform next season. After that, people will probably forget relatively quickly.