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(CBS) Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun has won his appeal and will not receive a 50-game suspension for testing positives for an illegal substance.
Tom Haudricourt of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported the current NL MVP became the first major-league player to have a positive drug test overturned.
“It is the first step in restoring my good name and reputation,” Braun said in a statement after the announcement. “We were able to get through this because I am innocent.”
Shortly after, Major League Baseball released the following statement:
“Major League Baseball considers the obligations of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program essential to the integrity of our game, our Clubs and all of the players who take the field. It has always been Major League Baseball’s position that no matter who tests positive, we will exhaust all avenues in pursuit of the appropriate discipline. We have been true to that position in every instance, because baseball fans deserve nothing less.
“As a part of our drug testing program, the Commissioner’s Office and the Players Association agreed to a neutral third party review for instances that are under dispute. While we have always respected that process, Major League Baseball vehemently disagrees with the decision rendered today by arbitrator Shyam Das.”
The report indicates the appeal was ruled in Braun’s favor not so much on contesting the result of the test, but the testing process itself. Arbitrator Shyam Das ultimately decided to rule in favor on that technicality, making it a 2-1 decision by the three-man panel.