Zack Greinke wouldn’t say anything about Ryan Braun in the days immediately after his former teammate was suspended for violating baseball’s drug policy. Uncertain whether he wanted to share his opinion, Greinke asked for another day to collect his thoughts, then another.
Friday, Greinke broke his silence.
“I just get nervous talking about this whole situation,” Greinke said.
Greinke spoke slowly and quietly, but his message was clear: He was disappointed.
Greinke was on the Milwaukee Brewers in 2011, when Braun tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug. He was also with the Brewers the next spring, when Braun, who successfully overturned a 50-game suspension, told his teammates he never did anything wrong.
“The main thing is, yeah, he lied to us,” Greinke said. “He forced us to lie for him, threw people under the bus in order to help himself out and didn’t care, blamed others for his mistakes and it’s just a lot of things you don’t expect from people.”
Braun publicly attacked Dino Laurenzi Jr., the man who collected his sample.
Greinke said he believed Braun when Braun said he never used performance-enhancing drugs.
“Oh, yeah, 100% believed him,” Greinke said. “Everything was so convincing. He had people to blame. He seemed like a really good guy. He was a good teammate at the time. You don’t know the guys that he was pinning it on. I’m not positive, but I think everyone 100% believed him at the time. Especially the next year, he looked just as good as the year before. His numbers his whole career, Hall of Fame numbers. How could you not believe him? He was so convincing.”
Asked whether his opinion on Braun as a player changed, Greinke replied, “Not even talking about the player. It’s just the person. Just the fact that he was willing to use anyone that got in his path. The closer you were to him, the more he would use you. It’s just disappointing that a human being could be like that.”
Greinke was also disappointed that Braun still hasn’t issued “a real apology.”
“The fact that even to this day he hasn’t had a real apology is really upsetting to me,” Greinke said. “I thought about it a bunch. He still hasn’t really apologized.”