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Ryan Braun: 'Nothing to hide,' will cooperate with MLB drug probe

February 05, 2013|By Bill Shaikin
  • Ryan Braun says he will fully cooperate with the MLB's investigation of why his name turned up in the records of a clinic linked to the distribution of performance-enhancing drugs.
Ryan Braun says he will fully cooperate with the MLB's investigation… (Gene J. Puskar / Associated…)

Ryan Braun, who successfully fought off a suspension for performance-enhancing drugs last year, vowed Tuesday to fight to clear his name one more time.

Major League Baseball plans to investigate why Braun's name turned up in the records of a now-defunct Miami clinic linked to the distribution of performance-enhancing substances, a person familiar with the matter confirmed to The Times.

Yahoo Sports reported Tuesday on the link between Braun and Biogenesis, the clinic associated with Alex Rodriguez and five other major leaguers in a Miami New Times report last week.

Braun, the Milwaukee Brewers' star outfielder, edged the Dodgers' Matt Kemp for the 2010 National League most valuable player award. He tested positive for excess testosterone that year, but he avoided a suspension by winning an appeal in January 2011.

In his statement Tuesday, Braun said his attorneys used Biogenesis chief Tony Bosch as a consultant in the appeal, citing in particular issues of a testosterone standard 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," Braun said in the statement.

"I have nothing to hide and never have had any other relationship with Bosch.

"I will fully cooperate with any inquiry into this matter."

MLB probably will want to ask Braun why his attorneys considered Bosch an expert, considering the Miami New Times report that Bosch is not licensed to practice medicine in Florida.

Under the MLB drug policy, a positive test is not the only grounds for suspension. The handwritten clinic records posted by Yahoo would not be sufficient evidence for suspension, but MLB investigators can try to corroborate those records and establish a link to performance-enhancing drugs.

When Braun won his appeal, which focused on irregularities in how the urine sample was processed rather than the test result, MLB executive vice president Rob Manfred issued a statement saying the league "vehemently" disagreed with the decision. The league subsequently exercised its right to fire an arbitrator jointly selected by MLB and the players' union to settle disputes between the parties.

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