Braun is a poster boy for the feel-good image Selig wants baseball to project. He is good looking, talented, and knows how to play the game. He is not the angry Barry Bonds, the press unfriendly guy who ballooned into a swollen home run god. So the press didn't like Bonds and then it seemed to be that he was going to go to jail. That was it. Baseball couldn't or wouldn't protect him or any violator of the drug policy - until now.
I am certain Braun will have his defenders, and there are a lot of young ladies in Milwaukee (and elsewhere I imagine) that are relieved that he won't be suspended for 50 games. His team needs him; Milwaukee needs him, and MLB needs him, right?
The sad part is that this opens a door, and Selig—that Wizard behind the curtain—is not going to be able to use any tricks to get it closed. One guy got away with it. Yes, he says he is innocent—as did Mark McGwire, Barry Bonds, Alex Rodriguez, and too many others to mention. They always say they are innocent. Always.
So forget talk about asterisks on Bonds' record. Forget talk about keeping guys out of the Hall of Fame because Braun doesn't miss one game. Either there is a policy and zero tolerance or there is not. At this point, other players are thinking about their home run totals, batting averages, earned run averages, and prospects for the Hall of Fame. They have options and now an open door. What happens next, Mr. Selig?
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