In a decision that surprised many, Ryan Braun won his appeal of a 50-game suspension, which means the 2011 National League MVP will be available for a full season(assuming, of course, there are no further developments that alter Braun's status).
Obviously, this is huge news for the Brewers, who won't have to worry about fielding a lineup without Prince Fielder or Braun for the first time since Sept. 27, 2006. Fielder's departure was long expected when the offseason began, and the potential loss of Braun for 50 games seemed like it would torpedo Milwaukee's chance at an NL Central repeat.
With Braun back in the fold, we can project how this affects the division race. The result? His absence would not have been as important as you might think.