Beyond the Bison: “Moral Midgetry”

Julian Dorey, Senior Writer

I’m disappointed. Not surprised, but disappointed. How quickly people can forget.

MLB’s hottest team out of the gate is the Milwaukee Brewers. Off to an 11-4 start, the team has wowed scouts with great starting pitching, a deep bullpen, and lineup depth. But the biggest catalyst of all? Yes, you guessed it. The liar, the cheater, the manipulator, the villain: Ryan Braun.

Yes, the same Ryan Braun who finally admitted to being another cheater in a game marred by PED scandals since the 1990s. The same Ryan Braun who went on a vindictive crusade to destroy the credibility and reputation of a previously unknown MLB sample-collector, Dino Laurenzi.

In case you forgot, when Braun initially tested scumbag positive a couple of years ago, he appealed and claimed that the tester (Laurenzi) had committed numerous mistakes that led to that positive test. Braun won his appeal. Laurenzi was scrutinized, chastised publicly, and ultimately lost his job.

Fast forward to last summer when the Biogenesis scandal finally backed Braun into a corner that even a professional, grade-A con-artist like himself couldn’t escape. Facing unprecedented punishments if he fought the MLB again, Braun cowered and admitted defeat in exchange for a measly (yes, measly) 65-game suspension. He retreated to his little black hole without publicly speaking, and he left all those who had supported him out to dry.

But now? Hell, old Brauny-boy’s off to a decent start on baseball’s most impressive team of the young season. With 10 RBI racked up already and his admittedly pure swing hitting the ball with regularity–he has just 12 strikeouts as of the writing of this article–the Milwaukee fans have already forgiven him, and even the national media is starting to slowly join the party.

I have only one reaction to the notion of putting the words “forgiveness” and “Ryan Braun” in the same sentence: ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I’m all about second chances, and I’m perfectly fine with atoning for your sins. But Braun has brushed off his slew of sins like he brushes off some dirt after a feet-first slide into second base.

When he was caught, he didn’t “face the music” and talk to the media. Instead, he released a fake, agent-written statement and wasn’t heard from until Spring Training. When he got to Spring Training, he only talked about trying to move past what had happened, as if it was a simple MLB case of using, getting caught, and apologizing.

No Braun, it wasn’t.

But, you know what? I don’t blame that lowlife as much as I blame us, the fans of the game. Without sufficient, honest remorse—and then a time period of seeing that it is genuine—Braun should receive no forgiveness. None. Zip. Nada. The fact that his scandal is already beginning to hit the history books and leave general consciousness makes me lose hope in us. It really does.

Ask Laurenzi (off the record) what he thinks. I’m sure you would get one hell of an answer.

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