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Ex-teammate Marcelo Albir likely ratted out Ryan Braun to MLB

Ryan BraunHow was MLB able to get Ryan Braun to agree to a 65-game suspension in 2013 despite the absence of a failed drug test? There was so much evidence against Braun that the Brewers slugger decided to accept his fate. And where did MLB get all the evidence? Not only did they have Anthony Bosch spilling his guts, but one of Braun’s former Miami teammates, Marcelo Albir, likely ratted on the MVP.

Albir, a 6-foot-1, 190-pound right-hander from Miami, pitched for the Hurricanes in 2003, 2004 and 2006. He was teammates with Braun on the Hurricanes from 2003-2005 (Braun was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers in ’05).

Albir did not play for Miami in the 2005 season, but you won’t find the reason for his absence from the team in any media report. Gaby Sanchez, a veteran major leaguer currently with the Pittsburgh Pirates, also did not play in the 2005 season, and the reason was never reported until now.

The Miami New Times — which opened up the Biogensis story last year — published an excerpt from a new book entitled “Blood Sport: Alex Rodriguez, Biogenesis, and the Quest to End Baseball’s Steroid Era” on Thursday. The excerpt says Albir and Sanchez were suspended the entire season after testing positive for PEDs.

Miami’s baseball coach, Jim Morris, did not tell his team exactly why the players were suspended, but he supposedly told them they all knew why.

Larry Brown Sports can also confirm that Albir and Sanchez were suspended from the Miami baseball program in 2005 after testing positive for PEDs. LBS was previously told the same information.

Though Albir’s baseball career didn’t go anywhere — his ERA ballooned to 5.23 in 2006 after being at 2.25 in 2004 — he became a conduit between former Miami baseball players in pro ball and Biogenesis.

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Carlos Gomez says Ryan Braun wasn’t hustling on baserunning blunder (Video)

Carlos Gomez baserunningCarlos Gomez believes Ryan Braun’s lack of hustle is to blame for a baserunning mistake that cost the Milwaukee Brewers a run in the sixth inning of their 2-1 loss to the Miami Marlins on Saturday.

As seen in the video above, Braun was the runner on second and Gomez was at first when Mark Reynolds singled to left with two outs. Braun should have scored for the tying run, but Gomez was thrown out trying to advance to third before Braun scored, which meant the run didn’t count. Gomez thinks the problem is that Braun wasn’t running hard enough.

“I’m not even running 100% and I make it there before him,” said Gomez after the game via the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “If you look at the replay, you’re going to find some answers to this. I run the bases like I do every time. I think he’s supposed to score.

“I think it’s a good play (by Yelich) because I saw him flat-footed and put his head down and hesitated. That’s a tough throw because most of the time that throw hit the runner. That’s why I make the decision to go to third. That’s how you make things happen. They got me this time. If it happened again, I’d go again.”

Given that Gomez is bothered by a back injury, manager Ron Roenicke thinks he was being too aggressive. Me probably was, too, because he ended up being thrown out. Since he ended up out on the play, he should at least assume some of the blame.

H/T Big League Stew

Jean Segura hit in face on Ryan Braun warmup swing (Video)

Jean Segura left the Brewers-Cubs game in the first inning and needed medical attention after being hit in the face on a warmup swing by teammate Ryan Braun on Saturday.

Braun was at the top step of the Brewers’ dugout leading to the on-deck circle and warming up for his at-bat. Segura walked behind him and wasn’t paying attention, and was whacked in the side of the face by Braun’s bat.

Segura was taken out of the game and helped down the dugout to be treated:

Jean Segura Brewers

Video via @BillKatt

Did Ryan Braun taunt Phillies fans after big hit? (GIF)

Ryan-Braun-taunts-PhilliePhiladelphia Phillies fans have been giving it to Ryan Braun over the past two days, and it is not bothering the Milwaukee Brewers slugger one bit. On Tuesday, Braun belted three home runs and drove in seven in a 10-4 win over Philadelphia. He then had a two-run triple in the eighth inning on Wednesday night that put the Phillies away.

Some are claiming Braun taunted the crowd at Citizens Bank Park after his latest timely hit. When he reached third, the scorned slugger made a gesture in the direction of the Brewers’ dugout. He claims he was simply acknowledging his teammates.

“No [it was directed] to our dugout, we always do that when we get big hits,” Braun said with a smirk, according to CSNPhilly.com’s Corey Seidman. “We’ve done that forever, we just haven’t had an opportunity to play too many good games, close games, exciting games.”

If Braun was making the motion across the diamond, that would be easier to believe. Maybe I’m reading into it too much, but his hands started pretty high up when he made the gesture. He then pointed them down toward the dugout. Also, Braun is a liar.

H/T The 700 Level
GIF via gfycat.com

Ryan Braun hits three home runs against Phillies (Video)

After last season’s suspension, many wondered what type of production we would see from Ryan Braun in 2014. Would it be up to the level we became accustomed to from 2008-2012?

ryan-braun-3-hrThere’s still a long way to go, but during the Milwaukee Brewers’ 10-4 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday, Braun was in a serious groove.

In the third inning, Braun reached down to send a pitch over the wall in left field for a three-run shot. In the fourth, he drove a ball in the middle of the plate to right for a solo home run. The eighth inning saw the 2011 National League MVP leave the yard for the third time on the day, another of the three-run variety.

Not bad, considering Ryan Braun has been dealing with an injury to his right thumb that has caused numbness.

Ryan Braun considering surgery for thumb nerve problem

Ryan Braun BrewersThe thumb nerve problem that plagued Ryan Braun prior to his suspension last year has returned, and the slugger knows that surgery is one of his options.

Braun has a problematic nerve between the thumb and forefinger on his right hand that has led to numbness. Because he can’t feel that area, he has bruises and blisters. That led the Milwaukee Brewers to have him DH instead of play the field Friday against the Boston Red Sox. The hope was that not having to throw would help it heal somewhat.

Ultimately, the big question will be whether Braun can continue this way.

Braun batted .298 with 9 home runs in 61 games last season prior to his suspension. From April 27 until his suspension, he only hit two home runs, and that’s probably because of the thumb nerve problem.

Braun had five months off to rest his hand and entered spring training hitting well. But the problem returned and the slugger will have to see how he can manage things.

Though Brew Beat says Braun knows surgery is an option, they say he did not have an operation because there are no guarantees it will work. Another issue is that the amount of time a procedure would keep him out could be great.

Regardless of what Braun decides to do, it’s looking like this season may be a struggle for him.

Ryan Braun gets standing ovation in return (Video)

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.

Ryan-Braun-standing-ovation

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.