In 2011, Braun flunked a drug test, but beat it on a technicality after he angrily and relentlessly attacked the credibility of the testing and the tester (he even accused him of being an anti-Semite). “We won because the truth is on my side,” he declared. In 2012, his name turned up on the Biogenesis records and he was given a 65-game suspension.
In 2009, Sports illustrated reported that Rodriguez had failed a drug test six years earlier, before baseball had adopted punishment for such offenses. This revelation came two years after Rodriguez told a national TV audience that he never used drugs. Rodriguez later admitted to drug use from 2001 to 2003 — the year he won the first of three MVP awards — and said he played clean for the Yankees. The New York Times reported that Rodriguez received drug treatments that very year (2009) and never stopped using them. It is highly possible that his entire career has been aided by drugs.
A post script: Rodriguez did not get his money’s worth out of the drugs the last four years, when injuries limited him to 402 games (injuries are believed by some to be a side effect of PED use). His batting average and home-run production declined from 2010 to 2013 — .270/30, .276/16, .272/18, .244/7.
The earliest Rodriguez could return to the game would be 2015. By then he would be 39½ and would have missed 1¾ seasons. That certainly won’t help him in his quest to return to form. Of course, he could always fall back on you know what.
Doug Robinson's columns run on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Email: email@example.com
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