As promised, here is the transcript of today’s Ryan Braun audio.
I’ve paraphrased most of the questions, but Braun’s answers are verbatim (except for some removal of unnecessary “I mean”, “you know”, “um” words). I’ll try to find time to fully transcribe the questions later but wanted to get this posted.
If you’d rather hear Braun say these words, I refer to you this post with the audio: Ryan Braun Spoke to Media at Miller Park
The first question was basically asking why Braun lied, and Braun used his response to it as sort of an opening remark.
“I got into a lot of details at that point and I’m not really gonna go into any further details. I’m deeply remorseful for what happened. I wish that I had the ability to go back, change things and do things a lot differently but unfortunatley I can’t do that. All I can do is move on, try to do everything in my power to earn back people’s trust and respect and support. I don’t anticipate being able to earn back everybody’s support but I certainly intend to do everything in my power to do that and I won’t stop trying.”
What do you have to say to the little leaguers who really have worshipped the ground that you walk on?
“I’ve always been incredibly appreciative of everybody’s support. I made a mistake, a huge mistake, a mistake that has obviously been extremely difficult to deal with and will continue to be difficult to deal with. And all I can say is in making mistakes, as I’ve stated previously we all deal with adversity, we all deal with challenges in life, and any challenge you face you have an opportunity to view either as an obstacle or as an opportunity to grow from, to learn from, to help other people avoid making that same mistake. And that’s what I intend to do.”
Bigger sin: Doing the PEDs or lying about it later?
“As I stated, I think the goal for me is just being able to move forward. I’m not really going to get into too many specifics about what happened other than saying that I’m extremely remorseful. I wish that I could go back and change things but I don’t have that opportunity to do that. So, I’m just going to do everything in my power to move forward.”
Have you apologized to Dino Laurenzi or made any payments to him?
“I have not made any payments to him. I’ve had some really productive and positive conversations with him. The Laurenzi family was actually gracious and kind enough to have my fiancee Larisa and I over to their house for dinner last night and we had some really good conversation. We’ve made amends and I think we’re both excited to be able to move forward and put this behind us.”
Have you said any words to Bud Selig?
“I did. I wrote Bud a letter but other than that I’m not really going to get into too many specifics.”
Knowing that you got away with a PED positive test, what possessed you to go to Maryvale that day and say all of those things you said? Lie so much and then throw Dino Laurenzi under the bus as well. What possessed you to do that?
“I’m not really, again, going to get into too many specifics. I wish that I hadn’t done the press conference. It was a big mistake. I deeply regret having done it and a lot of the things that I said that day. But again, all I can do is move forward and in an effort to do that I’m not going to get into too many specifics. I really don’t think that it does anything too positive or productive for me, for the team, for the game of baseball or anybody else. And in an effort to move forward I’m not going to discuss that stuff any further.”
What do expect as the fans’ response on Opening Day?
“Everywhere I’ve been, people have been incredibly supportive and I’m extremely appreciative of that. I don’t really know what to expect but, again, everybody’s been extremely supportive and I really appreciate that.”
Why wait so long to talk?
“I’ve actually been in town a few times. I don’t do the Twitter or Facebook or any of that stuff to alert everybody that I’m here. I think today was just kind of an opportunity that obviously we understood there would be some media here so I wanted the opportunity to speak to you guys. It wasn’t about waiting or anything like that. Like I said, I’ve been here a few times. This was just the first time that everybody’s been aware I was here.”
Other players talked right away, you took off and your teammates all had to answer for you, why?
“I think because it was an ongoing investigation I wasn’t really allowed to say very much at that time. And basically based on what I had learned from both MLB and the MLBPA it wasn’t in anybody’s best interest for me to make any statements at that time.”
Any positive in this?
“I think there’s something positive that can come from everything. I think at all times I always try to see the good in everything. Things aren’t always good but I do see the good in everything. And it’s an opportunity for me to use my experience and mistakes that I’ve made to help other people avoid making the same mistakes. I certainly have plans to do everything in my power to turn this bad situation into a good thing, into a positive, and to help other people along the way avoid making these mistakes.”
All-Star Game in future?
“I really haven’t thought about that kind of stuff. My goal is always to go and be the best player that I can be. I’m not motivated by individual accolades. I certainly intend to go out there and be the same player I’ve been. Hopefully I continue to get better and if that opportunity presents itself it’d be great but I guess my whole focus is just on doing everything I can to come back next year and be a great player.”
Will you ever make the Hall of Fame?
“I haven’t even thought that far ahead and I think it’s almost disrespectful to even discuss the Hall of Fame. I’ve only played in the league for less than seven years. At some point down the line we could have that conversation but I don’t think we even should have that conversation now.”
What was the injury you took the products for?
“Again, I’m not going to get into the specifics and continue to go backward. I’m moving forward and not going to get into too many of the specifics about that.”
Don’t you owe it to us to get into some specifics?
“I completely understand, respect where you guys are coming from and the fact that a part of your job is to ask those questions, but I hope that you guys can also understand and respect the fact that in an effort to move forward I’m just not going to continue to discuss that stuff.”
What do you make of the response of other MLB players and Aaron Rodgers?
“I actually haven’t really read, paid attention, or watched anything, but I understand people being disappointed, people being upset, people reacting emotionally. I don’t fault anybody for being upset. Again, I don’t know specifically what many people said but I don’t fault anybody for being upset or being disappointed.”
How is your relationship with Rodgers?
“I’m not going to get into our specific relationship other than to say that he’d been a great friend of mine for a long time. He’s a great person. I hope that he gets back on the field soon and can help those guys win some games.”
Will you be able to play at same level as before your suspension?
“Yeah, I think I’ll be better. I should be better.”
What about 2011 MVP? Do you think this revelation invalidates that award?
“Like I said, I’m just continuing to move forward. I think that’s all I can do. I’m not going go back and continue to discuss the things that have happened in the past. I feel like, in an effort to do that, I’m not going to discuss that stuff.”
Brewers gave you huge contract in part on being face of franchise, are you willing to reopen your contract and renegotiate at a lower pay since your value as poster boy has been diminished?
“The Brewers have been incredibly supportive, the entire organization, my teammates, everybody’s been incredibly supportive. I can’t think Mark Attanasio enough for his support. I fully intend to do everything in my power to be the best player and person that I can be moving forward.”
Is the drug testing policy still “fatally flawed” as you claimed in February of last year?
“Like I said, I greatly regret having done that press conference at all and my opinion on a lot of those things has definitely changed.”
Is that your biggest regret? What do you regret the most?
“Obviously the whole thing is a huge regret. It was a huge mistake. I wish that I hadn’t done it. I wish I could go back and do a lot of things different. I don’t think I can specifically pinpoint one thing that I regret more than anything else. I regret all of it. I wish I could go back and change it, but like I said, I can’t do that.”
Did you get enough support from the Players’ Association?
“Yeah, the Player’s Association was definitely very supportive.”
How has this affeced your reputation/stature within the game?
“I don’t think about those things. I really don’t. I’m getting married here really soon. My focus is on that and doing everything I can to come back next year and be the best player I can be.”
You don’t care about what people think?
“I always care what people think but I only have control over so many things. So I focus on the things that I can control. And that’s continuing to try to be the best person I can be, the best player I can be, and put myself in the best position to come back next year and have a great year.”
Following recent trade rumors, would you welcome a fresh start somewhere else? Or do you want to play here?
“No, I absolutely want to stay here. I made the long-term committment because the city’s been amazing to me, the fans have been amazing to me, the organization’s been incredibly supportive of me and I fully intend to stay here. Obviously it’s flattering that people would be interested. I actually had lunch with Doug Melvin, Ron, and Mark Attanasio last week. I’ve seen Mark a lot and I don’t think there’s any truth to those rumors, but my goal and my intention is certainly to stay here.”
What would you say to Robin Yount?
“Robin and I have had a great relationship. I enjoy our conversations with him, and I don’t think that our relationship would change much.”
Apologized to Yount?
“I look forward to seeing him. I’ll definitely see him in Spring Training. I think he’s out in Arizona quite often. I look forward to having an opportunity to have some conversations with him.”
Hard to watch games while suspended? How many games did you watch?
“It was extremely difficult, extremely challenging, and it wasn’t something I enjoyed in any way. I didn’t watch many games. I kind of paid attention to what was going on but aside from that I didn’t really watch many games.”
What do you think your relationship with teammates will be like?
“I think it’ll be great. I’ve been back here a couple times after the suspension. Everybody was incredibly supportive and I don’t anticipate any issues there.”
Experienced hostile reactions in 2012. Will next year be worse than 2012 around the league? What about here in Milwaukee?
“I don’t think about things like that. I don’t really have any expectations. I have dealt with it in the past and I’ll just do the best I can to continue to be the best player that I can be. I think we all deal with adversity, we all deal with distractions, there’s always something going on and my focus will be on being the best player I can be.”
Can you tell us more about Laurenzi dinner?
“I’m not going to really get into too many details other than to say that it was an incredible experience, extremely gracious and kind of them. They’re really special people and I appreciate them giving me the opportunity to go to their house and to have a conversation in person.”
This was with Dino himself and not his dad?
Did meeting with him make you feel worse about Feb ’12 comments?
“Yeah. I wish I could change it. I wish I never had said anything about him. I wish I knew more at the time that I had said what I said, but he was really a special person. His family is really a special group of people.”
What would you say to fans, especially kids?
“I’ve always been incredibly appreciative of everybody’s support. I would say I made a mistake, a huge mistake, and that all I can intend to do is try to find some positives to come from a difficult situation.”
Thoughts on Alex Rodriguez?
“I try to stay away from all of that stuff. I don’t really know the specifics of what’s going with him so I don’t think it’s fair for me to comment on a situation I don’t know too much about.”
Thoughts on the closing of his restaurants, business relationships, etc?
“Obviously there was a lot of fallout from everything that I’ve been through. I have a really good relationship with the SURG group, with Omar and Mikey. They’re great guys. Our relationship won’t be changed but obviously in light of everything that occurred there was definitely some fallout.”
What would you say to kids about cheating to get ahead?
“I hope that people can recognize what I’ve been through and not want to go through that same experience. It’s been a lot. It’s been really difficult. It’s been really challenging. I would never wish this situation upon anybody and I hope that people can view my situation as a learning experience and something they should try to avoid.”
If you hit next season, people will say you’re still on PEDs. What do you say to doubters who say your ability is all chemicals?
“Again, I focus on the things that I can control. I’m going to continue to try to be the best person I can be, the best player I can be. I fully intend to be at least as good as I’ve been to this point in my career. Hopefully I continue to get better, but I only focus on the things that I can control. I can’t control what people say or think. This is my fault. I’ve taken full responsibility for my actions. I’ve put myself in this position. People have the opportunity say whatever they want but I’ll just focus on the things I can control.”
Anything to say to fans?
“As I said earlier, I have been incredibly appreciative of everybody’s support. The fans have been unbelievably supportive of me and I fully intend to do everything in my power to earn back their trust, their respect, their support. I don’t think I’ll earn back that from every fan but I fully intend to try.”
How stressful has all this been on Larisa (Braun’s fiancée)?
“I think my relationships with all my friends and family have actually gotten stronger. I don’t think that it’s been overly stressful (on us). Dealing with the wedding has been far more stressful than dealing with this situation.”
When is the wedding?
“Soon, real soon.”
Thoughts on today’s Hunger Task Force event?
“It’s great. Obviously the Hunger Task Force does some amazing things in this state and I’m happy to be able to do my small part to contribute. It’s an incredible time for all of us to be thankful and appreciative of everything we have as Thanksgiving approaches, so: happy to be here.”
What do you think about potentially playing right field?
“Possibly. We’ve discussed it. I’m not opposed to it. I don’t know exactly what’s going to happen but it’s definitely a possibility. 100%, I’ll play wherever they want except third base. That didn’t go well. But I’ll do whatever we want. It’s not something set in stone but it’s something we’ve discussed.”
Ryan Braun made himself available to media today at a Hunger Task Force charity event outside Miller Park. He was asked a flurry of pointed and direct questions, nary a softball among them.
Hear his comments for yourself right here:
I’ll be transcribing the dialogue later today if you prefer to read.