Wisconsin Sports Briefs: Bud Selig says investigation is 'thorough;' Brewers reeling; Packers open camp with 3 QBs
Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig said in Milwaukee today that the investigation into the Bio-Genesis performance-enhancing drug scandal is “comprehensive” and “thorough.”
Selig, who lives in Milwaukee, showed up at Miller Park to speak with youngsters in the sport’s “National Play” campaign. He said the game needs to have a “tough” testing program, and baseball has the toughest program of all the country’s pro sports.
Selig would not talk specifically about the Ryan Braun case. The Brewers’ All-Star took a season-ending suspension on Monday, amid a new ESPN report that Braun was part of a long-running Bio-Genesis PED program starting in 2011 – a few months before he first tested positive for elevated synthetic testosterone.
Braun won the 2011 National League MVP award. About 145,000 Americans answered a poll in ESPN’s “Sports Nation” about the question of whether Braun should have to give up the award.
Forty-one percent said it should be vacated. Thirty-seven percent said it should be given to the second-place finisher that year, Matt Kemp of the Dodgers. Twenty-two percent said nothing should be done, siding with the baseball writers who gave Braun the award in the first place.
Wisconsin was the only state which voted to have nothing done.
The Milwaukee Brewers have been reeling since Ryan Braun’s drug suspension was first announced Monday.
Wednesday night, the Brewers will go for its first win since that dramatic development. They host the San Diego Padres.
The Milwaukee offense has only had eight total hits in its two losses to the Padres on Monday and Tuesday nights, while the Brewers’ starters have given up seven runs on 12 hits in nine and two-thirds innings this series.
San Diego has won four of its last six overall, batting .308 in that stretch with 34 runs scored.
Kyle Lohse will try to help the Milwaukee Brewers end the two-game losing streak, when he starts for the Brewers Wednesday night. Lohse has won five of his last six decisions. He’ll try to even his 6-7 record and improve his ERA of just under 3.5.
Will Braun work out with team?
You might remember that in 2006, Green Bay Packers receiver Koren Robinson was suspended for a year for alcohol violations, and quarterback Brett Favre was highly critical of the NFL for making Robinson stay away from the team and its facilities. Favre said it made no sense to ban Robinson from “the support group that can help him.”
In Braun’s case, it’s not known how much support Braun’s teammates could offer, after he vehemently denied using PEDs for two years before admitting “mistakes.”
Brewers manager Ron Roenicke tells the Journal Sentinel he didn’t know that Braun could work out with his teammates – and he did not know if it would happen.
Roenicke said earlier that Braun would benefit from complete rest as he recovers from nerve damage in his right hand.
Matt Kemp, who finished second in the National League MVP voting to Ryan Braun in 2011, now says the Milwaukee slugger should be forced to give up his award.
Kemp, an outfielder for the Los Angeles Dodgers, said a lot of people felt betrayed when Braun virtually admitted taking performance-enhancing drugs after strongly denying it for two years.
The baseball writers group which issues the award says the vote is final and will not be changed.
Kemp joined a chorus of players whom – unlike previous high-profile drug cases – were extremely critical of Braun’s actions and denials. Gov. Scott Walker weighed in yesterday saying, “It’s not just what he did, it’s that he strung us out for so long. He lied to us as fans.”
Packers open camp with three QBs
The Green Bay Packers will have three quarterbacks on hand when they open their training camp on Friday.
A fourth quarterback, free agent rookie Matt Brown, was released yesterday. He was hoping to make the team after starting at Illinois State for four years. The Packers signed him right after the April draft had ended.
That leaves two back-ups for Aaron Rodgers – Graham Harrell and B.J. Coleman. Wednesday, the Packers will hold their annual stockholders meeting at Lambeau Field.
Badgers schedule two public practices
The Wisconsin football team will hold two public practices during its pre-season camp next month.
Coach Gary Andersen will hold scrimmages during those sessions to be held on Aug. 12 and Aug. 19, starting at 3:30 p.m. each afternoon at Camp Randall Stadium.
Also, the Badgers will hold a Family Fun Day at Camp Randall on Aug. 17 from 5 to 7 p.m.