MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun will not serve a 50-game suspension. That means Braun will be suited up with the Crew when the Brewers open the season against the St. Louis Cardinals at Miller Park on Friday, April 6th.
The ruling came down Thursday afternoon, and the phone lines began buzzing on local sports radio. Callers say they're thrilled with the decision, but some radio hosts say they're still skeptical.
Sports Radio 1250 delivers the big news to rush-hour drivers. Hosts Josh Vermier, Gary Ellerson and Leroy Butler took calls from elated Brewers fans Thursday. "I think all Brewers fans have been waiting for this," Ellerson said.
Callers said Thursday they're thrilled #8 will be playing on Opening Day. "Without Ryan Braun, it's an average, at best, line up. Now, it's something that we could make a case that it's the best in the National League Central," Vermier said.
Despite Thursday's ruling, "The Big Show" isn't going easy on Braun. The hosts talked about some reports that Braun only won his appeal because of a chain-of-custody dispute. "I don't know that you can completely say that he's innocent," Ellerson said. "He was found innocent really on a technicality, rather than being exonerated through facts," Vermier said.
"The Big Show" guys say Brewers fans are ready to move on. "Ryan Braun is our guy. We'll wrap our arms around him and we'll move on from there," Ellerson said.
Outside the state of Wisconsin, they predict not all baseball fans will let this go. "He's going to take the heckling from a lot of fans, just like the people in Milwaukee did to Barry Bonds and Sammy Sosa," Vermier said.
At Miller Park, they expect Braun will always get a warm reception. It's Wrigley Field they're concerned about.
At the end of the day, they say what matters is Braun will be playing, and they say having that one player, raises the team from a good team to a borderline great team next season.
CLICK HERE to read more on the Braun announcement.
CLICK HERE to see responses on Twitter re: Braun's exoneration.
CLICK HERE to read Braun's statement after the announcement Thursday.
CLICK HERE to read a statement from the Brewers.