Ryan Braun press conference notes and quotes

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Some notes and quotes from Ryan Braun’s press conference this afternoon:

• He thanked fans who “withheld judgements as I respected the confidentially of this case.”

• “I tried to respect this process even though the confidentially was breached early on.”

• “If I had done this intentionally or unintentionally I’d have been the first one to admit it. I truly believe this substance never entered my body.”

• “It hasn’t been easy. Lots of times I wanted to come out and tell the entire story, attack everybody like I’ve been attacked. My name was dragged through the mud. But at the end of the day I recognized what was best for the game of baseball.”

• “I truly believe that everything in life happens for a reason and I learned a long time ago to stop questioning what goes on in life. I’ve yet to understand the reason for this, but I don’t question that.”

• “Today is for anyone who has been wrongly accused and everyone who stood up for what’s right. It’s about future players and the game of baseball.”

• “Never been a personal medical issue, never had an STD. Many of the erroneous stories reported by the network continue to live on, which is disappointing.”

• “I will continue to take the high road. We won because the truth was on my side. I was a victim of a process that completely broke down and failed as it was applied to me in this case. Today’s about making sure this never happens to anyone else who plays this game.”

• “The system as it was applied to me in this case was fatally flawed.”

• Braun revealed that he was first made aware of test result on October 19, which was during the playoffs.

• “At the end of the day, I know the truth. My friends, family, teammates, and the Brewers organization know the truth.”

• “We spoke to biochemists and scients, and asked them how difficult it would be for someone to taint the sample. They said, if they were motivated, it would be extremely easy.”

• “Ultimately, as I sit here today, the system worked because I was innocent and I was able to prove my innocence.”

• Braun is “considering all my legal options.”

Joe Girardi won’t use Masahiro Tanaka in Game 7

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The Yankees and Astros are set for Game 7 of the American League Championship Series on Saturday, and neither team will hold back as they seek a World Series berth. The Astros are prepared to back starter Charlie Morton with any able-bodied pitcher in their ranks — including Justin Verlander, though A.J. Hinch said it would be a “dream scenario” to get anything more from his ace — while the Yankees are prepared to utilize all but a few of their arms. One pitcher you won’t see? Right-hander Masahiro Tanaka, who last took the hill for the Yankees during their Game 5 shutout on Wednesday.

Tanaka expended 103 pitches over seven scoreless innings in his last start, fending off the Astros with three hits, a walk and eight strikeouts. He hasn’t pitched on fewer than three days of rest all year, and even with a do-or-die scenario facing the Yankees on Saturday night, manager Joe Girardi doesn’t want to compromise his starter’s ability to stay rested and ready for the World Series.

Girardi will also play it safe with fellow right-hander Sonny Gray, who dominated in a five-inning performance in Game 4. All other pitchers should be available and ready to go, though the club is hoping for a lengthy outing from veteran starter CC Sabathia. Sabathia is no stranger to the postseason: over eight separate playoff runs, he touts one championship title and a collective 4.24 ERA in 123 innings. He held the Astros scoreless in his Game 3 start, blanking them over six innings on three hits, four walks and five strikeouts for an eventual 8-1 win.

Even without Tanaka or Gray likely to take the mound for Game 7, the Yankees will enter the series finale with history on their side. Per MLB.com, they have a 4-3 road record in Game 7s and are 6-7 in all 13 Game 7 finales to date. The Astros, on the other hand, dropped their first and only Game 7 clincher back in 2004, when the Cardinals capped the NLCS with a 5-2 win in St. Louis. The teams are scheduled to face off for the first-ever Game 7 at Minute Maid Park on Saturday at 8:00 PM ET.