Originally posted on Fox Sports Wisconsin  |  Last updated 2/20/12
By John Pesetski Special to FOXSportsWisconsin.com PHOENIX -- The Milwaukee Brewers opened spring training on over the weekend with pitchers and catchers reporting for duty, but one of the most anticipated arrivals at the teams Maryvale training complex is still a few days away. Brewers manager Ron Roenicke confirmed Monday that 2011 National League MVP Ryan Braun will report to Maryvale on Saturday for the teams first full-squad workout. Roenicke said he has exchanged texts with the four-time all-star left fielder as Braun awaits the result of his appeal to Major League Baseball of a positive test for a banned substance. Braun's eligibility for the teams April 6 season opener against St. Louis will be determined by a team of three arbitrators who must decide whether he warrants a 50-game suspension under the terms of MLBs Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. The slugger reportedly failed a test during 2011 postseason. The testing process and results were supposed to remain confidential but were leaked in December. Braun, 28, has kept a low profile this winter. His public commentary on the situation has largely been limited to an appearance at the Baseball Writers Association of America awards, where he collected the MVP award. Though Brauns potential 50-game suspension remains under appeal, Roenicke said last week that he assumes Braun is "going to be with us all 162 games." If Braun is suspended, replacing his significant production he had 33 home runs and 111 RBI a year ago -- will not be easy. However, Roenicke and the Brewers are prepared to deal with his potential absence. "I know everybody thinks it's really hard, but it's not something I really dwell on," Roenicke said Monday. "Players missing games is a part of baseball." News of Brauns participation in Saturdays workout came as good news, if not necessarily a surprise, to his teammates. "Were happy," closer John Axford said. "Obviously, youd expect nothing less from him. Ryans a true competitor, a great teammate who cares about this team." The Brewers open their 2012 Cactus League schedule on March 4, and Braun will be able to participate in all spring training activities and games regardless of the result of his appeal. The result of the appeal, which began Jan. 19, was expected to be released within 25 days. But extensions on that time frame can be granted, which may explain the delay. Regardless, Brauns fate could be known any day now, perhaps by the time he arrives to camp Saturday.
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