It’s far from surprising news, but we’ll pass it along anyway. Via Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
The Milwaukee Brewers will know before the start of spring training whether all-star leftfielder Ryan Braun will be in their lineup on opening day.
People familiar with the history of the Major League Baseball drug testing program and arbitration process indicate the Brewers and Braun will not be kept guessing about his status until the team opens its spring camp Feb. 18 in Phoenix.
Braun’s hearing is likely to take place during the last week of January, and the 2011 National League MVP should be notified of the arbitrator’s decision one week later. He’s hoping to have his positive PED test result overturned completely. Though, as we’ve addressed on this blog, that seems unlikely to happen.
Update (7:00 PM ET): The MLBPA announces that the deadline has been extended 24 hours while MLB and NPB continue to negotiate a new agreement for the posting system. The new deadline is 8 PM ET on Tuesday.
Last Thursday, we learned that the MLBPA was challenging the Nippon Professional Baseball posting system, delaying Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball. The latest collective bargaining agreement removed a lot of the incentive for players to come to the U.S. by capping pay. Ohtani, for example, can only receive a signing bonus between $300,000 and $3.53 million while his team — the Nippon Ham Fighters — would receive $20 million for posting him.
Jon Morosi reports that the deadline for this issue to be resolved is 8 PM ET on Monday evening. He notes that key NPB officials have worked through the night in Japan to try to reach a resolution. It is possible that even if no agreement is reached, the deadline could be pushed further back.
Ohtani, 23, has become a heralded hitter and pitcher in Japan. At the plate over his five-year career, he has compiled a .286/.358/.500 triple-slash line with 48 home runs and 166 RBI in 1,170 plate appearances. On the mound, he has a 2.52 ERA with a 624/200 K/BB ratio across 543 innings.