WAUWATOSA - A Hall-of-Fame Milwaukee Brewer who had his own battles with drugs expressed the pain Brewers nation is going through with the suspension of Ryan Braun, but he also conveyed hope for Braun to take the steps needed to heal the wrongs he's caused.
"It's just sad," Paul Molitor, who played third base for the 1982 American League Champion Brewers, told 620WTMJ's John Mercure on Friday.
"I'm hoping somehow, some way, the Brewers endure it, the fans endure it, and Ryan, through being not only apologetic but transparent, and even using this time to help educate others, maybe we can get some healing and go forward."
Braun will have to miss the rest of the 2013 Brewers season after being suspended following an MLB investigation into performance-enhancing druguse.
"For me personally, it brings back times when I had my own troubles, how difficult it was, the embarassment, the remorse. I know it's tough. As far as the fans are concerned, Milwaukee fans feel a personal connection with their players. If you're playing for us, you're one of us. There's a lot of disappointment," explained Molitor.
"Anytime you get busted, if you will, if your weaknesses become public, you have a tendency to only acknowledge things as they come out instead of trying to get out in front of it. In hindsight, from the begining, I wish I had been more honest about some of the problems I had with recreational drugs."
Molitor told John he wouldn't try to place judgment on Braun, but says he has to get out in front of the story and tell the complete truth.
"I think transparency is important. I don't think it's something you can run and hide from. It will be good for the healing in the long run," said Molitor.
"If somehow, some way, Ryan makes his way back into the game and people begin to give him a second chance, that he'd be compelled to be one of those guys to educate young people."