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Braun finally admits drug use

Fri., Aug. 23, 2013

A month after acknowledging only that he made “mistakes,” Ryan Braun admitted taking performance-enhancing drugs during his N.L. MVP season of 2011.

The suspended Milwaukee slugger said he took a cream and a lozenge containing banned substances while rehabilitating an injury.

“It was a huge mistake for which I am deeply ashamed and I compounded the situation by not admitting my mistakes immediately,” Braun said in a statement released by the Brewers.

Braun tested positive for elevated testosterone in October 2011, but his 50-game suspension was overturned when an arbitrator ruled that the urine sample was mishandled.

Last month Braun accepted a 65-game suspension resulting from Major League Baseball’s investigation of the now-closed Biogenesis of America anti-aging clinic, which was accused of providing banned substances to players.

“I have no one to blame but myself. I know that over the last year and a half I made some serious mistakes, both in the information I failed to share during my arbitration hearing and the comments I made to the press afterwards,” Braun said.

“I have disappointed the people closest to me – the ones who fought for me because they truly believed me all along.

“I kept the truth from everyone.

“For a long time, I was in denial and convinced myself that I had not done anything wrong.”

Braves’ Heyward has surgery on jaw

Atlanta Braves outfielder Jason Heyward had surgery Thursday on his broken right jaw after he was struck by a pitch. The team has not said how long he will be out, but he could miss the rest of the regular season.

Before his injury, Heyward had moved into the leadoff spot and become one of the Braves’ hottest hitters. He was batting .253 with 13 homers and 37 RBIs.

Clearing the bases

Delmon Young is returning on a minor league deal to the Tampa Bay Rays, the team that selected him with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2003 draft. Young batted .261 with eight homers and 31 RBIs in 80 games before being released by the Phillies this month. … The New York Mets have signed Daisuke Matsuzaka to a one-year contract, and the right-hander is scheduled to start tonight’s game against Detroit. … St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Yoenny Gonzalez has been suspended for 50 games for an unspecified violation of baseball’s minor league drug program.

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