Ryan Braun steroid news destabilize the NL Central (again) (again)

Patrick McDermott

Ryan Braun joins Alex Rodriguez in wondering why Biogenesis kept a bunch of notebooks filled with star clients' names lying around as the latest steroids scandal widens.

Just when you thought the St. Louis Cardinals' Chris Carpenter-sized hole in the rotation was going to be the most important thing to happen to the National League Central on a random Tuesday in February: The Ryan Braun steroid story reared its head again when he was caught up in the Alex Rodriguez's Discount House of Incriminating Evidence scandal. Brew Crew Ball has more, along with a lot of very depressed and angry animated GIFs.

Their ZiPS projections paint a picture of a Milwaukee Brewers team that's very dependent on Braun, who's settled in as a version of Matt Holliday who actually hits as many home runs as you think Matt Holliday should. But as of Tuesday it's hard to tell both how Braun is implicated—he's not listed near a particular PED like A-Rod—and how/when his name fits in the Biogenesis story.

But the original story breaking the news suggests punishment "through non-analytical positives" is a possibility, which means Braun and the Brewers could be in trouble again this year.

Braun has obviously has a PED run-in already, but if you want a good reason not to ever be triumphalist about another team's players getting suspended it's worth mentioning the other players whose names leaked out in this story: Obvious PED users and integrity-of-the-game ruiners Francisco Cervelli and Danny Valencia. At this point it seems as though anybody could be hit with a 50-game suspension at any time.

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