Ryan Braun Accepts MVP Award, Makes Only Passing Reference To Postive Drug Test
Though not specifically referencing the "drug testing controversy that has enveloped him for most of the off-season, RYAN BRAUN did not ignore it as many expected when accepting" his NL MVP award Saturday night, according to Tom Haudricourt of the MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL. Braun talked about "facing 'adversity' and 'challenge' during his speech at the annual" BBWAA awards banquet in N.Y. He said, "Sometimes in life we all deal with challenges we never expected to endure." Haudricourt noted it was a "heartfelt speech delivered under the toughest of circumstances, coming after a two-day arbitration hearing before a three-man panel" that concluded Friday. That panel has "25 days to render a verdict but could do so at any time before that deadline." The Brewers have been "kept in the dark during the supposedly confidential process, learning of developments only as they were reported." No front office member "had spoken to Braun since the report of the positive test until a private reception before the banquet." Haudricourt noted after being introduced at the ceremony, Braun was "greeted by applause from the packed ballroom." Braun is "still scheduled to attend the Brewers' 'On Deck' fan festival next Sunday in downtown Milwaukee" (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 1/22). In L.A., Chuck Schilken noted while Braun "never specifically mentioned his positive drug test" during his acceptance speech, there is "no doubt everyone in the crowd of around 800 knew exactly what the Milwaukee Brewers left fielder was talking about" (LATIMES.com, 1/21). Braun in his acceptance speech said, "I also wanted to take a moment to thank the players association for supporting me throughout my career and especially for supporting me through everything I went through over the last couple of months. Thank you, guys. ... I've always loved and had so much respect for the game of baseball. Everything I've done in my career has been done with that respect and appreciation in mind" (JSONLINE.com, 1/21). In N.Y., Dan Martin wrote it is "not a good sign when an MVP thanks the Players Association in his speech, but Braun is not in a normal situation" (N.Y. POST, 1/22).