HHS awards $102 million for new flu drug

first_imgJan 5, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – In an effort to expand the pool of antiviral drugs for influenza, the US government yesterday awarded a $102.6 million contract to BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Inc. of Birmingham, Ala., to develop peramivir, a new neuraminidase inhibitor.The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), in a press release, said peramivir has been effective against several influenza strains in laboratory studies. HHS said the contract will cover production of the investigational drug, phase 2 and 3 clinical studies, and validation of manufacturing processes.Research under the contract will include tests involving the deadly H5N1 avian flu virus and may include research on the possible preventive use of the drug, according to HHS. BioCryst officials said the drug has been shown to help animals survive H5N1 infection.”Antivirals are an important element of our pandemic influenza preparedness efforts,” said HHS secretary Mike Leavitt in the press release. “Our antiviral strategy includes not only stockpiling existing antiviral drugs but also seeking out new antiviral medications to further broaden our capabilities to treat and prevent all forms of influenza.”Licensed drugs in the neuraminidase inhibitor class are taken orally (oseltamivir) or by an inhaler (zanamivir). However, peramivir is under development as a parenterally administered drug, meaning it can be given through intramuscular and intravenous routes.HHS said a parenteral neuraminidase inhibitor may be particularly useful in hospital emergency departments for treatment of patients who have life-threatening flu. Parenteral injection could permit rapid buildup of peramivir to high levels throughout the body and allow treatment of people too ill to take medications by mouth, the agency said.In a news release, BioCryst said its laboratory tests have shown that peramivir, an inhibitor of influenza A and B neuraminidases, is more potent than currently available drugs in its class and is active against antiviral-resistant flu strains. The company said high doses of injectable formulations have been safely administered to healthy people, and the drug has been found to promote survival in animals infected with the H5N1 virus.At a BioCryst teleconference that followed the HHS announcement, Charles Bugg, PhD, the company’s chairman and chief executive officer, said the contract allows the company to move peramivir as quickly as possible through clinical development.HHS said awarding the contract to BioCryst is part of a larger initiative to support the development of new treatments and vaccines that would allow the United States to respond quickly to a flu pandemic.Bugg said both the intramuscular and intravenous formulations of peramivir will go through phase 2 and 3 clinical trials. The intramuscular formulation will be tested against a placebo in outpatients, and the intravenous trial will likely test peramivir against oseltamivir in hospitals.Enrollment of patients for the phase 2 trials will begin this flu season in the United States, Canada, and Europe, Bugg said, adding that the company has identified sites in the southern hemisphere that could be used to fill this year’s phase 2 study groups or facilitate an early start on phase 3 studies. He said BioCryst is also identifying sites in Southeast Asia, where flu outbreaks occur year-round, that might be added to the study.Bugg said the HHS contract to develop peramivir is subject to an emergency use authorization that would allow the department to stockpile the drug before approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) if clinical data show it to be beneficial.Jonathan Nugent, vice president of corporate communications at BioCryst, told CIDRAP News that the company hasn’t ruled out developing oral or inhalational formulations of peramivir in the future. He said the company couldn’t speculate on how long it might take for the drug to win FDA approval. HHS said the FDA has given peramivir “fast track” status, which would expedite the agency’s review of BioCryst’s application.See also:Jan 4 HHS press releasehttp://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2007pres/01/20070104a.htmlJan 4 BioCryst press releasehttp://investor.shareholder.com/biocryst/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=224367last_img read more

Poll shows many unready for public health crisis

first_imgMay 8, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – A recent survey sponsored by the American Public Health Association (APHA) indicates that about a third of Americans have made no preparations for a public health emergency and nearly 90% have prepared less than they think they should.The APHA survey, released in April at an expert roundtable discussion during National Public Health Week, was recently posted on the association’s Web site. The online survey was conducted in February by Peter D. Hart Research Associates, based in Washington, DC. It included 925 adults and sought the input of several specific groups, including mothers with children younger than 5, hourly wage workers, and adults who have chronic medical conditions.The survey group also polled 120 employers and 150 school superintendents and interviewed a small group of regional food bank administrators and local food panty and soup kitchen managers.Among the survey’s key findings:Thirty-two percent of the public have taken no special steps to prepare for a public health emergency that could leave them short of food, water, or medication.An 87% majority said they knew they had not done enough and could do more to prepare for a public health emergency.Forty percent of respondents said they had taken steps to prepare in the past, such as after the Sep 11 terrorist attacks, but had since let their plans lapse.More than a quarter (27%) said they were prepared for an emergency, but only about half (14%) had the 3-day supply of food, water, and medication currently recommended by the American Red Cross for general disaster planning.Close to half—46%—of respondents had not assembled a disaster supply kit.Georges C. Benjamin, MD, executive director of the APHA, said in a press release that the survey findings show public health officials have a long way to go to prepare the nation for public health emergencies.”No one can predict where the next natural disaster, major storm, or disease outbreak will strike, but when it does, it is likely to disrupt basic services, leaving people without electricity, water, food or needed medications,” he added.In the press release, the APHA said the survey shows that several vulnerable subgroups are lagging in their emergency preparedness efforts. For example, 58% of mothers with young children said they did not have a 3-day supply of water for their families, and only 61% of people with chronic health conditions had at least a 2-week supply of medication.The 17-page survey report says the term “public health crisis” does not resonate with people, though respondents reported being are concerned about specific events, such as natural disasters, that might lead to one. Only 26% thought that a public health crisis would affect their family in the next year or two, but 57% thought a severe storm might strike their area in the next few years, 47% thought an infectious disease outbreak such as the flu is likely, and 43% believed a foodborne disease outbreak is likely.In other findings, researchers reported that only 37% of employers believed that a public health crisis would affect their business during the next few years, and only 18% said they could continue paying their employees if business operations were interrupted. Though 63% of employees realized they might not be paid during a public health crisis, only 15% had saved enough money to provide for their families if such an event occurs.School administrators generally reported a high level of preparedness in the form of evacuation, communication, and community sheltering plans, but few said they had enough drinking water or food to last students for 3 days.Representatives of regional food distribution centers said they had devoted a lot of time and resources to preparedness planning, but those from local pantries or food shelves reported they were not prepared for public health emergencies, according to the APHA.All groups that were surveyed said cost was a major barrier to their preparedness actions.Greg Dworkin, MD, one of the editors of the FluWiki, an interactive pandemic planning Web site, told CIDRAP News he commends the APHA for commissioning the survey and said it’s important to gauge the public’s preparedness opinions from time to time, rather than making assumptions.The survey results suggest that preparedness messages are getting through to the public, but that people are not following through with action, said Dworkin, who is chief of pediatric pulmonology at Danbury Hospital in Danbury, Conn. “That’s a real problem: the public hears the information, but the next question is how they process it,” he said.Some public health officials are overly concerned that the public will overreact or panic if they use specific terms when referring to public health threats, but not using specific terms represents a missed opportunity, Dworkin asserted. “The message has to be crystal clear. Say ‘pandemic’ if that’s what you mean,” he said.Also, it likely takes sustained, high-profile, and consistent messages to successfully persuade the public to prepare for public health emergencies, Dworkin said. “It’s a marathon, rather than a sprint,” he added.See also:APHA press releaselast_img read more

Six Nigerians extradited to US over alleged Internet scams

first_imgGermany charges six over alleged links to Al Shabaab Six Nigerian nationals have been extradited from South Africa for their alleged role in Internet scams involving datingSix Nigerian nationals have been extradited from South Africa for their alleged role in Internet scams involving dating websites and work-at-home schemes, the US Department of Justice said Monday.A total of 20 defendants are charged in the case, for their alleged involvement in a variety of schemes such as fake online relationships with victims who were asked to ship and receive merchandise purchased with stolen credit cards and banking information.The six extradited defendants face nine charges in the US state of Mississippi for the alleged activities which began as early as 2001.“The defendants identified and solicited potential victims through online dating websites and work-at-home opportunities,” the department said in a statement.They were additionally involved in check scams as well as bank, financial and credit card account fraud.They are charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, conspiracy to commit identity theft, use of unauthorized account access devices, theft of US government funds and conspiracy to commit money laundering.Three defendants have already been convicted for their roles while six await trial and two remain on the run. The United States is working to extradite three other Nigerians involved in the case.-AFPRelated Ethiopia shuts down mobile internetcenter_img Nigerians demand prosecutions over alleged air force killingslast_img read more

Border Patrol responding to ‘possible immigrant landing’ in Palm Beach

first_imgBreaking right now, Multiple police units along with customs and border patrol are responding to 2345 South Ocean Blvd. due to a “possible immigrant landing.”Their country of origin is not known at this time.BREAKING— immigrants have possibly come ashore on Palm Beach. Police have issued an alert saying they’re investigating on S Ocean Blvd. We are on top of it at the @WPTV Live Desk. @Chopper5WPTV on the way. pic.twitter.com/NryS0Jzqup— Erica Rakow (@EricaRakow) June 25, 2020last_img read more

Hockey India invites Glenn Turner for women’s strikers camp

first_imgNew Delhi: As part of their preparations for the Olympic Qualifiers, Hockey India has invited former Australian striker Glenn Turner to work with the women’s hockey team strikers in a special camp starting December 1 at the Sports Authority of India (SAI), Bengaluru, it was announced on Friday. The Canberra Hockey star who was part of the World Cup-winning Australian squad in 2010 and 2014, will arrive in Bengaluru on Friday night for the eight-day national camp.Speaking about the camp, coach Sjoerd Marijne said: “It is good for our strikers to use the experience of Glenn Turner. As a striker, his positioning in the circle was critical for his team scoring goals and the positioning of strikers is one of the key areas we want to improve on.”Marijne further emphasised that the camp will also help build leadership among the players.”Glenn is someone who has experienced the pressure of performing top level hockey and he was part of the Australia’s leadership group and often worked with younger players in his team. We will ask him to share his experience as a leader too and I am sure our strikers can benefit immensely from this camp,” added Marijne.The players named for the strikers camp include Skipper Rani, Youth Olympic Games silver medallist Lalremsiami, Navneet Kaur, Navjot Kaur, Rajwinder Kaur, Vandana Katariya, Anupa Barla, Priyanka Wankhede, Preeti Dubey, Mumtaz Khan, Jyoti, Poonam Rani and Leelavathy Mallamada. IANS Also Read: Sports Newslast_img read more

Football: Wisconsin heads to BYU for final non-conference game

first_imgThe University of Wisconsin football team is closing their non-conference season this weekend when they head to Provo, Utah to take on BYU.Bringham Young is in a difficult place right now, with a 1-2 record currently this season. The Cougars star quarterback Tanner Mangnum took a hit during their most recent game against Utah and left the game with an ankle injury. As of Wednesday morning, it is has not been confirmed that he will start against the Badgers.His backup, Beau Hoge, might seem intimidating at first glance, as the 6-foot-11, 205-pound sophomore is the son of former NFL running back Merril Hoge, but Hoge gets much less intimidating the closer you look at him. While Hoge is certainly better off physically than Mangnum, and he is more capable of running than his predecessor, his throwing arm leaves much to be desired.Football: With Cichy out, Orr helps bring momentum to Wisconsin defenseThis season looked like it was going to be an easy one for the University of Wisconsin defense, until inside Read…Hoge has only played in three games during his collegiate career, during which he threw for 137 yards, completing 10 out of 17 passes and managing to score a touchdown. However, that was back in 2015, and Hoge has not been on the field for BYU since then because he decided to red-shirt his 2016 season.This level of inexperience could be the biggest disadvantage that BYU has Saturday, and it could lead to the Cougars relying heavily on their running game. So far this season, BYU has managed to net a grand total 229 yards and two touchdowns from their running game, and they have also managed to lose a grand total of 55 yards because of their running game.In comparison, the Badgers have managed to gain a grand total of 591 yards and seven touchdowns from their running game, and they have only managed to give up 28 yards. It should be easy for the Wisconsin defense to stop the BYU running backs, and to easily take control of this game.Schreter: What we learned from Wisconsin’s opening win against Utah StateAfter coming out of the gate slow and falling behind 10-0 in the first quarter, Wisconsin began hitting on all Read…The Badgers have managed to squeeze out two wins during their tenure at Camp Randall, but there are still many things that UW can improve on during their battle against the Cougars.Communication needs to improveIt seems as though one of the biggest issues with this Wisconsin team thus far has been communication, or lack thereof. The defense has stumbled over themselves due to a miscommunication as to what diagram they’re running.The offense has the same issue, with quarterback Alex Hornibrook accidentally throwing three interceptions within the first two games of the year due to a misplacement of receivers. If this team can nail down their communication and all get on the same page of the playbook, they should be able to out skill the Cougars easily.The Badgers need to keep their momentum goingWisconsin has been having an issue with keeping up any momentum that they manage to gain, especially during the first half of the game. Their game against BYU is going to be a close game, and UW will need to be on their toes the whole time.There can’t be a second quarter lull like there has been in the last two games of the season. If Wisconsin wants to be victorious this season, they need to come out of the gates strong and continue to build momentum throughout the game, not lose it.Football: Wisconsin starts game strong, fails to continue momentumWhen the NCAA scheduled the University of Wisconsin football team to take on the Florida Atlantic Owls, everyone thought that Read…The safeties need to keep doing what they’ve been doingWisconsin has had some truly stellar moments this season thanks to their safeties. From Joe Ferguson’s 99 yard-interception, to D’Cota Dixon earning an interception during the Utah State game, Wisconsin’s safeties have been managing to create waves in the secondary.It is clear that this Wisconsin secondary is on their way to becoming one of the most dangerous secondaries the Badgers have ever possessed. If they keep this momentum up, BYU is going to have a hard time getting the ball into the end zone.While Saturday’s game will still be a challenge for Wisconsin, it is clear they have all of the tools they need to produce a win. The best chance they have to succeed is to ensure their communication lines stay open and they continue to play the quality game they are capable of playing.last_img read more

Everton Sack Their Manager After Arsenal Thrashing

first_imgEverton have sacked their Dutch manager, Ronald Koeman, less than 24 hours after the Merseyside club were thrashed 5-2 at home in their English Premier League (EPL) clash.The new development was confirmed via a statement which said the club “would like to express their gratitude to Ronald for the service he has given to the club over the past 16 months”.The former Southampton and Valencia manager leaves the club in 18th position on the Premier League table after winning just two of the first nine league games of this season.Ronald Koeman becomes the third managerial casualty of the season after Frank De Boer (Crystal Palace) and Craig Shakespeare (Leicester City).Relatedlast_img read more

SPFL agrees international media rights deal with Swiss agency

first_img Rangers FC and Ladbrokes end betting partnership  April 14, 2020 Submit Related Articles Highlight Games secures IIHF deal with Infront April 6, 2020 Share SPFL concludes Ladbrokes Championship with COVID crisis plan April 16, 2020 StumbleUpon Share The Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) has moved swiftly to secure an international media rights agreement with media and marketing agency Infront, following the recent termination of the league’s agreement with MP & Silva.Based in Switzerland, Infront will look to establish new agreements with overseas broadcasters that will allow matches from the Ladbrokes Premiership, Ladbrokes Championship, Ladbrokes League One and Ladbrokes League Two, as well as Irn-Bru Cup and Betfred Cup ties, to be shown all around the world.There will be a  particular emphasis on territories where supporters of Scottish clubs, and those with an interest in watching high-end Scottish football, have not previously been able to enjoy SPFL match coverage.SPFL Chief Executive Neil Doncaster said: “Infront are a highly respected and experienced global rights agency. They emerged from a number of different companies each of which was keen to represent us overseas.“We will be working with Infront over the coming weeks to agree deals in those territories where SPFL football is not currently shown.”Infront Senior Vice President Football Stephan Herth added: “Infront has a long and successful history within the football industry and we are delighted to begin working with the SPFL to bring matches to fans of Scottish football around the world.“The SPFL has its own unique legacy. As the second oldest league in the world, it has welcomed many top players and managers over the past few decades. That history will almost certainly be added to in the next seasons. Infront looks forward to building on that legacy and taking the league to a new level on the international stage during that time.”last_img read more

Boakye Yiadom ruled out for two-weeks

first_imgSpain-based Ghana striker Richmond Boakye-Yiadom will be out of action for two weeks after a collision with Granada goalkeeper Roberto in their La Liga game played last Saturday.The 20-year-old who has been on blistering form for Elche in the La Liga was rushed to the Hospital after laying still and unconscious on the pitch.Boakye-Yiadom who was discharged from the Hospital yesterday is said to be fine now and responding to treatment according to his agent Oliver Arthur”Richmond is recovering and he is ok now, the information gathered from the doctors is that he had a slight back injury but luckily for us he didn’t secure any more damages to his bone,” he told Joy sports.”Now he has been discharged from the hospital and can do things on his own and if I want to estimate it shouldn’t be more than two weeks for him to return to action.”last_img read more

‘I feel like I’ve been duped’: Astros fans battle range of emotions amid cheating scandal

first_imgLife is complicated for Astros fans right now. Their favorite team cheated — the Astros used technology to steal signs and relay those signs to batters in real time — and got caught, and now is dealing with the ramifications, both the punishments handed down by commissioner Rob Manfred and the pointed, angry criticisms of their peers on the field.  Which means the fans are dealing with the ramifications, too. The difference? The Houston players deserve it. The front office deserves it. The owner deserves it. The fans? They don’t deserve any of the crap, for lack of a better term, heaped on them this offseason. But here we are. If you’ve interacted with any Astros fans on social media in the past month or so, you’ve probably felt their anger. Social media, Twitter especially, isn’t the venue for nuanced thoughts, informed dialogue or productive conversations. And Astros fans will be the first to tell you — as they’ve relayed to me in calmer moments — they haven’t always handled it well. FOSTER: If even Nick Markakis is talking like this, players are really mad at AstrosI wanted to know exactly what it feels like, so I asked a handful of Astros fans questions via Twitter DM. “My thoughts? S— sucks,” @Miguelg1984 wrote. “We cheated and risked it all and it came to light. I think this will be a very grueling season.”We’ll get to their bulk of their responses in a moment, but first a few more thoughts. The thing to remember is that there are layers. Astros fans can admit that their team was in the wrong, but still defend their Astros from over-the-top, vicious and personal attacks, or the spreading of wild conspiracy theories and flat-out lies. Wouldn’t you? And, as we all know, the vitriol directed at the Astros and their fans has been intense. The Astros are a punching bag right now, for both opposing players and fans of other teams, the likes of which we haven’t seen in a long time. Maybe ever. And here’s the thing I keep coming back to: It’s not just that Astros fans watched their team win the World Series championship in 2017 — the year they cheated — and that title is now tainted. That championship was special for Houston. It was about so much more than just winning a World Series title, even more than winning the first World Series title in franchise history. In the summer of 2017, Hurricane Harvey devastated the entire Houston community. I was in Houston and saw first-hand what that awful, horrible storm did to the people there. Just brutal. The Astros helped, in some little way. In the grand scheme of things, of course, baseball didn’t matter. But the success of the baseball team gave a little lift to the community at a time when any sort of reprieve meant the world. Watching their favorite team win the World Series was, for many Astros fans, cathartic. And this cheating scandal, tainting those memories? That sucks, for want of a better term.”The championship meant SO much to this city,” @lloydofhouston wrote, “especially after Harvey and so many years of the Astros choking in the playoffs. Manfred may not have taken the trophy away from us, but we all know that it will never mean the same to us again, and that hurts.”I asked six Astros fans a handful of questions via Twitter DM, and I’ve included a handful of their answers here. I’m grateful for their honesty and insight, the type that’s not possible one tweet at a time. The responses have been minimally edited for clarity and length. How do you reconcile your experiences in 2017 with what you’ve learned about the scandal?@strosbeforehos: “That entire season was incredibly special to Astros fans. At a time when so many Houstonians were left with nothing and couldn’t find a reason to even smile, the Astros brought that spark back. Watching those guys play phenomenally on the road, not just at home, will always stick out to me in that experience. I will never forget that moment I shared with my family, including my children, the night we won it all. The emotions we felt together, the tears, the timing of it after our city went through hell … that hasn’t been and can’t be taken from me.”@HTownSportsTake: “This question strikes to the heart of the matter for me personally. Jose Altuve’s throw to Yuli Gurriel to clinch the Series was the moment I felt joy for the first time in eight months. I experienced the deaths of many people in my life that year and had to watch hopelessly, nearly 400 miles away, as my family and hometown were being changed forever from Harvey. The title, as a fan, was incredible and I repped my Astros gear every day in hostile territory. Everyone in my life, from friends and coworkers, to former students and current patients, to friends I only know through social media, literally, everyone, knew how special that day was for me.”Today, I feel like I’ve been duped and made a fool of by players I considered some of the ‘good guys’ in all of sports. The title, the players, and the great game of baseball that is as much a part of me as anything, has me questioning what is real and what isn’t. Honestly, I’d probably feel better about the organization, the players, and the chances of regaining respect in the league if the organization at least offered to vacate the title. I know I’m in the minority of Astros fans on this, but it may be the only way to ever have this group of players and this franchise be seen positively. Maybe it’s simply too soon to know how I really feel about it, but as of right now I feel betrayed, saddened and hoodwinked. Hopefully one day I’ll feel differently.”@lloydofhouston: “Every pitch and every at-bat during the 2017 playoffs took a lot out of me, but we were all in it together, and this city was connected in a way that it maybe never had been before. When they won the Series it really did lift the spirit of the city in a way that not much else could. I think it would have been much worse for us if the allegations went public right after the Series, but it still hurts. That asterisk will always be there even if we try to deny it. Even worse, we know that the team was good enough to win without cheating, but we will never know.”At what point did you accept that the illegal sign-stealing actually happened? @Miguelg1984: “I waited for the commissioner’s report to come out before judging. JomBoy_ dropped the bomb on the trash-can banging but the audio was a red flag. Thought it was possible but needed the hard proof, which came out later.”@BruceWahlie: “I accepted that it happened pretty early. I wasn’t sure MLB really was gonna drop the hammer quite so hard.”@AnthonyLpz20: “The Athletic article was published Nov 12, and after reading it and going back to watch that matchup against Danny Farquhar and I heard the multiple banging, I knew that some shady stuff went down in 2017. As more video evidence came out, the more obvious it became and harder to ignore.”@strosbeforehos: “I was sure when we first heard anything about it that, on some level, sign-stealing took place. I was sure because this is something that has been a part of baseball forever. We’ve heard about it quite a bit in recent years from other teams, and I don’t see why we’d be in the minority when it came to seeking an advantage. I just had no idea to what degree.”@HtownSportsTake: “I, like others that follow baseball closely, had heard the accusations that the Astros may be stealing signs. So when the story broke in November, in my gut, I knew it was not going to end well. I was willing to accept it if there was a ‘smoking gun’ of evidence presented. And, of course, ultimately there was enough presented on Jan. 13 for me to accept it fully. I was ill prepared for the firing of A.J. Hinch, however. I can’t imagine the pain he feels right now. He’s a good man and he, of everyone involved in this, has the self-awareness to make himself a better person and learn from his mistakes. Jeff Luhnow, as brilliant as he was, probably needed to go anyways, especially after the multiple PR nightmares prior to this scandal.”MORE: Players must speak loudly, publicly to stop cheating in real timeHow has your social media experience changed?@AnthonyLpz20: “Scrolling through my timeline is like walking through a field of land mines, every single day. It’s tough, and seeing certain tweets from certain people bother me. However, I also think it’s important to understand others’ viewpoints, because it’s important to be a critical thinker in a situation like this. But I have muted certain accounts. Out of sight, out of mind.”@strosbeforehos: “I think any Astros fan would say social media has been a difficult experience since the report emerged. All non-Astros fans have been unabated in their comments not only to Astros fans and players, but players’ families as well. It’s tough to watch sometimes. I have avoided Twitter more than usual just so that I don’t have to read too much ignorance from other fanbases and even some players. There’s an awful lot of fans out there who believe (and players who pretend) their teams are squeaky clean. Not to mention it appears everyone has accepted what the report has to say about 2017, but will not accept the findings on 2019. Now they’ve come up with silly ideas about buzzers and it doesn’t help that the media runs with false information without bothering to confirm. I can only read so much of it.”@Miguelg1984: “Meh. I still have my avatar of me wearing Astros gear. I’m surprised how supportive Dodger fans have been all around me. They know we messed up and haven’t given me too much smoke. I think Yankees fans are taking it a lot harder. Hard to say we didn’t cheat last year with that dinger off Aroldis Chapman and ’Tuve running to locker room.”Have your thoughts on Mike Fiers have changed between November and now?@Miguelg1984: “I think he’s a rat and not much more to say on that guy. Keep that s—t in the locker room. Now you’re forever known as a rat. He shook up MLB and changed the game. Can’t wait to face him after we play the Angels. Hopefully we see Alex Bregman or Altuve crush one off of him. Sometimes doing the right thing can still backfire.”@AnthonyLpz20: “Mike Fiers was a big contributor to the 2017 team, leading the team in innings pitched was huge and we needed it from him, his contributions were valuable … but I can’t help but hold a grudge toward him. I know it sounds questionable to do so but I guess that is the nature of fandom.”@BruceWahlie: “I’m a little confused why Fiers is being labeled a hero. Has he turned his ring in? Where was the bravery in 2017?”@strosbeforehos: “My thoughts on Fiers definitely have not improved. To know the guy didn’t say a word while this was actually happening, and gladly accepted his World Series ring, only to say something once traded away is pathetic. Carlos Correa said to ask Fiers about Altuve, because Fiers knows Altuve didn’t participate. But when asked, Fiers refused to comment. Suddenly he doesn’t have much to say. Considering he’s the one who blew this thing open, he should absolutely be fielding questions on all of it. And if he’s really such an honorable guy, as so many believe, be honest about those who DIDN’T engage in the cheating. If you’re going to tell the truth, tell it all.”@HtownSportsTake: “I’ve actually spent a lot of time reflecting on Fiers. At first, I was angry with him. The reality is that Fiers was a huge part of that team in 2017. He did what he felt he needed to do. Astros hitters really touched him up last year and his A’s couldn’t quite get over hump so maybe he had personal and professional reasons for it. Nevertheless, he broke a clubhouse rule and it’s likely his career will be impacted. Will his own teammates trust him? Will other players around the league trust him? The media loves him and see him as courageous. Maybe he is, but I don’t hate him or anything like that. I wish him well. He’s not the story here, the league-wide problem of technology-based sign-stealing is the story, with the Astros cast as the villain. When all is said and done, Fiers will be a trivia answer about this scandal.” Has this changed how you feel about the Astros as a team/franchise?@strosbeforehos: “Don’t get me wrong, I have felt my share of disappointment over their choices. A lot of it is because we didn’t need to go to those lengths in the first place. We showed exactly how good we were on the road, including during the WS. We just didn’t need to do it, and we chose to anyway. Poor decisions. It’s frustrating and disheartening. I’ll always wish we’d thought better of it. But I still love my team. I’ve been die-hard since about 6 years old, thanks to my parents, and that isn’t going to change. I’ll be showing up at the park to support them this season just as much as I always do.”@BruceWahlie: “Hasn’t changed my feelings toward them at all. If anything I feel closer to Astros fans and the team now.”@Miguelg1984: “I always have my team’s back. It’s like if your kid ends up getting arrested for selling drugs … do you hate him? No, it’s your job to always love them and defend them and that’s how I feel about my Astros. It’s ugly, but have to ride or die with your loved ones.”@lloydofhouston: “I will always love the Houston Astros, no matter what. This team obviously did something that they should not have done, but we know the players, we have seen all the good that they do for the community, and we will not let this define them. We will support them.”@AnthonyLpz20: “The Astros are my ride or die. I, however, do not agree with Jim Crane’s remarks and half-ass apology. I wish the Astros could’ve handled a lot of things differently for sure, but I forgive the players. I am proud of Correa and thought his initial apology was strong and straight from the heart. I am also proud of the way he stuck up for his teammates, while also taking blame for his role in the scandal. “This is such a unique and weird situation to be in as a fan. I’m so excited to watch this team compete in 2020. I hate to say we have that ‘us against the world mentality’ seeing as how the Astros dug their own grave, but I think as fans it’s important that we maintain open-mindfulness and just accept the villain role, and have some fun with it once real baseball starts. I also hope for another Yankee matchup and hope the Astros once again eliminate them (lol). This season will be so interesting to watch. Ride or die. Those /players/ have my support.”And one more insightful response, to my “anything else you think I should know?” question.@HtownSportsTake: “As much as I’ve learned about baseball in over four decades of obsessed fandom, I would be incredibly naive to think this stops with the Astros. But, in a weird way, if the Astros have to fall on the sword to put a stop to it all, then so be it. It is what it is. I’ve made the personal decision to not partake of MLB this season. While everyone is perhaps rightfully throwing the Astros under the bus, I think the commissioner’s handling of this situation by MLB may cause fans to leave for other sources of entertainment. That said, I still hope the Astros win in 2020. They have the most talent, in my opinion. I’ll support them in thought if not via the wallet. I’m just not sure when I’ll put myself out there again with the chance of being crushed and heartbroken. Maybe I’ll do more camping this summer.”*** (Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/3f/4d/astros-parade-2017-021920-ftr-gettyjpg_6kqto1svksxj1qs105j7dkrnq.jpg?t=1577622344&w=500&quality=80 Look, the point here isn’t to change anyone’s minds. I’m not trying to absolve the Astros fans who have fired back with as much or more vitriol as they’ve received. There’s plenty of wrong to go around. Just don’t be an ass, you know? As with most things in life, this is a complicated issue, and complicated never gets solved on Twitter (no matter how many tweets are threaded together). Hopefully, these six baseball fans have given you a little perspective on what it’s like to be a fan of a team like these Astros. Because you never know, it could be your favorite team caught up in something like this next.last_img read more