Ryan Braun Fails Drug Test

By Joe Schrank 12/12/11

Baseball's MVP denies the finding of excess, synthetic testosterone in his blood. His chances don't look good.

Up against it: Ryan Braun Photo via

In spite of Major League Baseball's comprehensive drug testing system, the issue continues to plague the sport. National League MVP  Ryan Braun, left fielder for the Milwaukee Brewers, has tested positive for performance enhancing drugs. The league maintains the result showed " insanely high" levels of synthetic testosterone. But Braun denies the claim, calling it "BS." His representatives say there's an innocent explanation. If the result is upheld, Braun will receive a 50-game suspension and could possibly be stripped of his MVP title. The Brewers' front office is asking that judement be reserved. But given the evidence, the odds look daunting: no test has ever been overturned in an appeal process since the current system was introduced in 2004. Braun's hearing will take place in January. Perhaps he's familiar with the defense of former Olympic sprinter Dennis Mitchell, who explained an abnormally high testosterone reading in 1998 by claiming to have drunk five bottles of beer and had sex with his wife "at least" four times the previous night: "It was her birthday, the lady deserved a treat." His defense was accepted by USA Track and Field, but not by the IAAF.

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Joe Schrank is a writer and social worker in NYC. He was one of the founders of TheFix and is a frequent contributor to The Huffington Post, Gawker, Salon, and Fox News. Intoxicant-free for 18 years, Joe remains a depressed disgruntled alcoholic. You can find Joe on Linkedin or follow him on Twitter.