ryan-braun-failThere are some big stories – and funny stories – going around in the world of MLB right now, including that international draft thing

  • According to a Bob Nightengale report, MLB is working around the clock specifically to bust Ryan Braun. The Brewers star, who previously beat a positive-PED test rap, was identified in documents associated with a clinic in Miami believed to have been distributing banned substances. Since then, MLB has been interviewing players and digging among documents to try and find a firm link between Braun and PEDs – it has even gone so far as to offer immunity to other players who testify privately against Braun (again, according to the report). Nightengale’s report makes it sound as though MLB, at the highest levels, is pissed that Braun avoided suspension the first time around on a technicality, and will stop at nothing to bust him this time. Even if they are unsuccessful, I’d say Braun is probably watching his step.
  • For their part, naturally, MLB denies the substance of Nightengale’s report, claiming that they are investigating all players connected to that Miami clinic with equal vigor.
  • The Dominican Republic, as expected by many, won the World Baseball Classic in rainy, nasty conditions last night. They beat Puerto Rico, and never lost during the tournament. It was pretty exciting for DR fans – many of whom gathered at stadiums throughout the DR to watch the game live – which makes me happy about it. Imagine the reaction if the United States had won. “US won the what? WBC title belt? Cool, I guess.”
  • Players are frequently traded for very little in return. There’s the always nebulous – and frequently value-less – “Player to be Named Later.” There’s mere “cash.” And there’s Dickie Noles, who was traded for himself. But … “no compensation.” Like, nothing? That was the price when reliever Mike Cisco was dealt to the Angels by the Phillies earlier this week. Please become an All-Star, please become an All-Star …
  • MLB owners are considering eliminating pensions for non-uniformed personnel. It’s been a good decade financially for baseball, so this is the kind of move that is always perceived negatively, even as many businesses move away from the pension model. But do you really want to be the one who tells a long-time scout that his pension is gone? Not even a little. (Interesting to note: the Cubs are one of four teams (together with the Brewers, Twins and Blue Jays) who have opted out of MLB’s general non-uniformed personnel pension plan, though they are required to provide their own comparable or better plan.)
  • The Orioles have a game scheduled for Thursday, September 5 against the White Sox. It’s a night game, since each team is traveling to Baltimore after a night game the day before. The problem? The NFL wants to schedule a Ravens game on that same day, because they’ve been doing that with Super Bowl winners on that Thursday for a long time now. FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT! I’m betting on the Orioles now that Ray Lewis has retired.
  • In a move that could not be more perfectly timed, given the ongoing Wrigley renovation talks, and the need for in-ballpark monetization, the Brewers are opening  the “Dew Deck” at Miller Park, which is “a seating area above the right field bleachers that dates to Miller Park’s opening year, will be renovated during the off-season. The signature addition to the area will be a 25-foot high rock climbing wall, designed in the shape of a can of Mountain Dew.” Boom. I can’t decide if this is so gloriously garish or just garish:

  • Cerambam

    I couldn’t be more for added signage and revenue at wrigley including a jumbotron, but that dew deck is just tasteless.

    • Jim

      I am surprised that they didn’t change their name to the Dewers. Isn’t Milwaukee all about the Beer? Hence Brewers … My friend’s last name is Dewar, he might like that.

  • EQ76

    The Sept. 5th game between the O’s and Sux is also right after both teams were on the road the night before. The arrogant NFL is trying to bully the teams into a day game.. Hey Goddell, how about you move your game db..?!??!!

  • cubzforlife

    A baseball game at Miller Park is like an NBA game. T shirt slingshots, loud music between innings and Jumbotron telling fans when to cheer. I made the mistake of going there to see Big Z pitch and really disliked the atmosphere. Made me miss the black nets over my seats at Wrigley that catch the falling concrete.

  • Segal27

    As a 15 year old boy, the “Dew Deck” is pretty much the bomb dot com. I loves me some Mountain Dew.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I’d be lying if I said I don’t drink a lot of (diet) Mountain Dew.

      • hansman1982

        BAH, Diet is for sissies!

        My beer belly agrees with this statement. Although, that may be from the copious amounts of hamburger I ingest on an hourly basis.

      • http://www.survivingthalia.com Mike Taylor (no relation)

        Diet Mt. Dew is probably the worst thing you can drink on the market today. Sodium Benzoate when mixed with Vitamin C (Mt. Dew and Diet Mountain Dew both have Orange Juice concentrate in them) produces carcinogens. It also has Brominated Vegetable Oil in it (a substance that is banned in over 100 countries because it sticks to fat cells for way too long, causing damage to kidneys and liver ); a substance that is only regulated in the U.S. Doctors used to use Bromine in its liquid form to sedate patients until they noticed some suffered memory loss. It also includes Aspartame, which is horrible.

        • DarthHater

          killjoy! 😛

        • Stinky Pete

          No soda for almost two years and zero regrets. Feel so much better and aside from that, I get all tingly when I think about how much money I save by drinking water. Life is better without soda.

        • fromthemitten

          all this talk about how pop is bad for you but you don’t mind chemtrails and the HAARP?

  • JulioZuleta

    Between having a LF that is roided out of his mind, and a 25 foot tall Mountain Dew can in right, the Brewers outfield has really become an advertisement for reducing the number of “swimmers” a man has.

    • RoughRider

      Any suggestion that Mountain Dew reduces “swimmers” is ludicrous. Brett has admitted to drinking alot. He and his wife are popping them out like crazy. Seven more years he’ll have enough to field a team.

      • JulioZuleta

        Ha, I know. It was a joke.

        • RoughRiider

          mine too.

      • fromthemitten

        I forgot all about yellow 5 reducing your swimmers. damn I was hoping that would be an effective form of birth control

        I do have a friend who is allergic to red 40, which I had never heard of

  • Stevie B

    Brett..if you really knew what aspartame is doing to you, I promise you’d never, ever put it in your body again.
    Sorry…I hate to see people killing themselves.
    Go Cubs…??!!!

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      One a day is OK, right?

    • Brian Peters

      There’s nothing I hate more than folks preaching about what to and not to eat or drink. If you don’t want to eat/drink certain things, then don’t. Just don’t preach. For how many years did we listen to the whole “don’t eat eggs/you can eat eggs” question? Leave it be. Brett’s a father of two small children. He needs all the juice he can manage. Lol!

      • King Jeff

        He has a point, people drink diet soda to avoid sugar, when aspartame does far worse things to your body. Besides, he didn’t tell anyone what to eat or drink, just gave some advice.

        • ETS

          “A 2007 medical review on the subject concluded that “the weight of existing scientific evidence indicates that aspartame is safe at current levels of consumption as a non-nutritive sweetener”.[7] However, because its breakdown products include phenylalanine, aspartame must be avoided by people with the genetic condition phenylketonuria (PKU).”


          I like a good industry-wide conspiracy theory as much as the next guy, but I really haven’t ever been convince that aspartame is all that harmful to you.

          • King Jeff
            • cubchymyst

              Are you comparing an article on a site called mercola.com to one from an NIH (National Institutes of Health)? I’ll go with the NIH conclusion.

              • King Jeff

                When it cites the number of medical studies that it does, I give it credence. It’s also not the only one that I’ve read. Here is an fda study if that’s your cup of tea. http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dailys/03/Jan03/012203/02P-0317_emc-000199.txt

                • cubchymyst

                  The FDA carries a little more weight then the other one so maybe there is something. Be nice to see what concentrations they are talking about and I’m not familiar enough with the material to draw a conclusion. I personally I drink water more than anything else.

                  • King Jeff

                    I believe the FDA studies were for far over the recommended amount, but there are definitely risks involved.

                    • cubchymyst

                      If you exceed the recommended amount of any substance you will run into health problems.

            • The Dude Abides

              You guys really should just wait on Doc”what’s his name” to set you straight. I’m sure he’s an expert on this subject as well.

              • DarthHater

                meanie 😛

            • ETS

              I have seen many similar articles and they all have specious sourcing of their “facts”. Straight from the FDA mouth however is,
              ” FDA calls aspartame, sold under trade names such as NutraSweet and Equal, one of the most thoroughly tested and studied food additives the agency has ever approved. The agency says the more than 100 toxicological and clinical studies it has reviewed confirm that aspartame is safe for the general population.”

              Look, I’m not thinking the stuff is good for you, but I don’t think it’s going to give you cancer either.

              • Ron

                Yep, and every drug that has been recalled was previously approved by the FDA.

          • hansman1982

            I called Pepsi once as a teenager to complain about being addicted to their product. They said that when consumed in normal amounts, it isn’t addictive.

            Yet, here I am, addicted to Mt Dew.

            • Tommy

              This story was really about hamburgers. Wasn’t it, Joe.

            • Jimmy James

              Pepsi, the gateway soda?

      • d

        Brian, no one was preaching..
        if you drink diet drinks..then you are a moron..

        way too many Dr. Google’s on here…

        eat and drink what you want..

        the US is the fattest country and the sickest..
        of course we also use most of the resources, so therefore we are the most wasteful.

        Cancer, heart d. and diabetes all treatable…

        but hey at least Mountain Dew is bringing us an energy drink…
        because we all need that..

        listen to the FDA….they are political , not health conscious…

        I mean cigarettes are legal and look are good they are….if the government wanted people to be healthy … banning smoking would prob be goal # 1…

        wake up…

        Dr. Mercola is in Schaumburg and you are lucky to have him in your backyard…

        listen to the FDA…take your flu shots and other crap..

        god you people are so stupid!

  • MightyBear

    Can that even be considered a “trade”? Agreements/contracts have to have some consideration, don’t they? Where’s Brett the lawyer on this one?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      It’s very bizarre. Technically, baseball trades are supposed to be Allowable Thing X for Allowable Thing Y.

      • hansman1982

        I remember that was the issue with the Theo compensation. The Cubs had to receive a player back for Carpenter.

        Now, if it’s a sketcy prospect, the rules may be more flexible.

  • Mysterious4th

    They moved the opening game this past season to weds instead of the usual Thursday so it didn’t have to go up against obama accepting the democrats nomination for him, so why shouldn’t they play the game weds? The NFL shouldn’t even try to battle the Os on it. It’s hard on anybodys body to work all day, travel all night and then have to get up early to work again. I hate getting off work with a shift between and only getting a few hours of sleep. I am just a dispatcher (sitting at a desk trying to stay awake *yawns*) so imagine a physical job….and the fatigue….oh and injuries that come from that.

  • Seth N.

    If Wrigley became just another annoying, loud, distracting, etc. etc. ball park I would not go there again. I live near a good college team (and a few other such opportunities). I would go there instead. I am one of those old men who enjoys all sports, but enjoys the pace of baseball and find it engrossing w/o the need for other distractions,

    I think it is not stretching to say that we are becoming a nation of short attention span citizens.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I just want to say that I agree ….


      • MightyBear

        LOL That was funny.

      • RickyP024


      • ETS

        Never mind, now I’m starting to side with the anti-aspartame crowd. 😉

    • TWC

      “I am one of those old men who enjoys all sports, but enjoys…”

      … bitching about the damn kids these days even more.

      I’m shocked, SHOCKED, that a self-described old man would have issues with those who are younger than him.


  • TheDynastyStartsIn2016

    No compensation? Oh, like the Tyler Colvin trade.

    • ETS

      buh dum ting

    • JulioZuleta

      Yeah, but that one was no compensation either way. I don’t get why people are bent out of shape about losing a “power hitting OF” who OPS’d .687 on the road. Was it the 0.274 road OBP that keeps everyone up at night? Those are similar to Carlos Zambrano’s career numbers.

      Also, not to but too much weight on Spring stats, but Colvin is rockin a 0.484 OPS this Spring. No one should be losing any sleep over him. He would not start on this team.

    • X The Cubs Fan

      Haha now that’s funny right there I don’t care who you are.

  • Seth N.

    TWC, I don’t understand your comment. Maybe you just felt like b*tching a little? Go for it!

    It was not a complaint, it was an observation. They are different.

    • King Jeff

      What are the distractions at other parks that aren’t at Wrigley now?

  • Seth N.

    I mean

    is it such a stretch to want to go to a baseball game and…um, watch baseball?

    OK, maybe it’s just me.

    • King Jeff

      I go to Marlins park for games, and even with all of the amenities, distractions, and the monstrous homerun sculpture, I have time to enjoy the game. I fail to see how a new ballpark is going to make the game unwatchable.

      • TWC

        Well, all those distractions might make the game unwatchable if were an old man with a short attention span.

  • bpaoni

    I can see it now: Braun takes his daily shot o’ roids, Braun hits mammoth roid assisted opposite field homer, ball hits unsuspecting rock climber, rock climber falls to his death, Braun blames rock climber for tampering, Brewers fans rally around Braun….

  • TWC

    How on earth has this thread gone for 46 responses without anyone yet calling Braun a donger?

    I’m disappointed.

    • Dale’s Ear

      Happy to oblige you good sir, Ryan Braun is a donger (I hope that isn’t antisemitic(or that))

      • DarthHater

        No, it would only be antisemitic if you called him a circumcised donger. 😛 [duck and cover]

      • TWC

        Antisemitic? Is Braun jewish? Whatever — that’s totally irrelevant to me.

        But he’s 100% a donger.

  • Wilbur

    Dew Deck = garish

  • DarthHater

    Dew Deck? Bah! Let’s have a Ritalin Deck at Wrigley with 101 activities unrelated to baseball!!!

    • http://thecubcontrarian.blogspot.com Kyle

      The Dew Deck must work, because I’ve been craving Mountain Dew all day after seeing that picture. I can’t remember the last time I had it.

      • DarthHater

        And yet you still don’t crave the koolaid? Kyle, Kyle. smh

  • Stevie B

    I’ll never bring up a non-baseball related issue again.

    I promise.

    On that note, the Cubs come to Atlanta…THE DAY I LEAVE ON A DISNEY CRUISE….with my 7 year old twins.

    I’m not “disappointed”…just, damnit, I guess.

    • MichiganGoat

      That trip will be more memorable than any regular season game, enjoy.

      • Stevie B

        Very true Goat….Its just that I live 30 minutes from the stadium.

        And I’m a nut bag Cubs fan

  • Die hard

    If the Cubs moved the bullpens under the outfield bleachers then they could add a row of seats along each line and generate an extra $100000 per game or $8mil per yr

  • Jimmy James

    Maybe we know why Braun tested so high for ped’s….he was all hopped up on mt dew.

    And aspartame 😉

  • Oswego Chris

    Is it me, or does Ryan Braun look like Kevin from the American Pie movies? Needs ‘roids to impress Tara Reid….

  • baseballet

    Once we get rid of those pesky landmark restrictions the Cubs can have their jumbotrons and their own giant inflatable can and whatever they want. Jumbo everything! Say it ain’t so Joe.

  • http://www.survivingthalia.com Mike Taylor (no relation)

    He looks like Bronson Pinchot when he was on the show “Perfect Strangers.”

    I called him BALCO Bartokomous.