Ryan Braun was given a hero’s welcome in his return to the Milwaukee Brewers’ lineup for Opening Day on Monday. A few boos could be heard from the fans at Miller Park, but the overwhelming majority gave Braun a standing ovation in his first at-bat.
Surprised? You shouldn’t be. For the most part, baseball fans just want to see production. Braun is the Brewers’ best player and Milwaukee was a far less exciting team to watch after he was suspended for the final 65 games of the 2013 season. The fans cheered even louder later in the game when he picked up his first hit of the year.
You could argue that Braun is worse than most steroid users. Not only did he cheat, but he also let his lying get to the point where he almost cost innocent people their careers. He lied repeatedly to protect his name at the expense of others, and Monday was yet another example of how most baseball fans ultimately care about one thing — the long ball.