Posted by Dale Buss on December 12, 2011 03:03 PM
The stakes for Ryan Braun, last season's National League Most Valuable Player in Major League Baseball, couldn't be higher after word has leaked out that he tested positive for a substance the game has banned. Not only his reputation is at stake but also a 57-game suspension and about one-third of his 2012 salary, should he not be able to overturn MLB's finding on appeal.
Braun, the left fielder for the Milwaukee Brewers, apparently is pleading that the tests somehow have been mishandled or misinterpreted amid the league's complex process, but no player ever tested positive has won on appeal. In any event, the league's final ruling isn't likely to come until January.
Meanwhile, the brands behind Braun's increasingly significant commercial endorsements are bound to be none too happy about any of this. Nike, AirTran Airways, and Cytosport, makers of Muscle Milk, had ties with Braun before he was bestowed the MVP award in November. Presumably, a number of other brands have been exploring the rising endorsement potential of the young star who is telegenic and, until now, has had a squeaky-clean reputation.Continue reading...