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Was Braun’s image tainted, despite winning the appeal?

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MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun’s 50-game suspension for testing positive for a banned substance was overturned last week, and Braun spoke publicly for the first time about the incident during a press conference from Spring Training on Friday. Now, many are wondering whether Braun’s image will recover from this hit. It seems that at least as far as Brewers fans are concerned, it already has.

FOX6 spoke with Brewers fans camping out at Miller Park as part of the annual Arctic Tailgate who say, “I believe Ryan Braun,” and “I’m excited to see him play again.”

Some admit perhaps other fans won’t be as forgiving.  “It’s gonna be pretty tough for him, at every National League park he’s gonna get booed – everywhere other than here at Miller Park,” Robert Hrdi said.

Sports Publicist Gail Sideman says from a public relations perspective, Braun hit it “out of the park” with his news conference on Friday.  She says he squelched rumors and gave important details in his defense.  More importantly, she says he seemed sincere. “He was probably coached, and that’s a good thing, but he spoke as if he felt everything he was saying. He spoke from the heart,” Sideman said.

Sideman says Braun’s image has been tarnished at least in the short term, and as the National League MVP, he has probably lost out on endorsement deals over the last several months because of the controversy. She goes on to say if Braun continues to work on his reputation and stay “clean,” he will likely win back most of the critics.

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