Mike Fiers says he’s received death threats over blowing whistle on Astros
Mike Fiers is without question one of most polarizing figures ensnared in the Houston Astros’ sign-stealing controversy, and he claims that his role as whistleblower in the scandal has led to death threats.
While many have praised the now-Oakland Athletics pitcher for having the bravery to come forward and report what he saw as an Astros player during the team’s run to a 2017 World Series title — earning a ring himself in the process — others have condemned him as a traitor, snitch or double-crosser.
It appears, however, that some people have troublesomely crossed a very serious line due to their issues with Fiers, as he told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle Thursday that he’s been subjected to death threats.
“Whatever, I don’t care,” Fiers said. “I’ve dealt with a lot of death threats before. It’s just another thing on my plate.”
Fiers went on to downplay the suspicion that the Astros will be looking for payback for his role as whistleblower, saying, “If I’m worried about any retaliation, I’m not going to be ready for the season.”
Those comments reinforce what Fiers said earlier this week in response to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred indicating the league will take “every possible step” to protect the pitcher during the 2020 season.
“I’m not asking for extra security,” Fiers told Alex Coffey of The Athletic. “I’m here to play baseball and I can defend myself, if anything.”
Interestingly enough, Fiers’ disclosure that he’s received death threats comes on the same day that David Ortiz blasted him over how he came forward years later, calling the pitcher a “snitch.”
David Ortiz calls Mike Fiers a "snitch," sounds off on Astros sign-stealing scandal, feels for Jose Altuve. https://t.co/CRukEj5saV pic.twitter.com/6kdeo3BWi1— NESN (@NESN) February 20, 2020
The scathing criticism from some individuals aside, Fiers does not agree with the chatter that he should feel obligated to give back his World Series ring,
“I said from the beginning, ‘I’m not away from this. I was part of that team, I was one of those guys,’” Fiers said. “Suspensions, fines — I’m willing to take as much punishment as they do. If they ask me to (return the ring), it’s not the end of the world.”
Fiers’ admission to receiving death threats is not only concerning, it demonstrates how the ongoing fallout from the scandal has transformed into a full-blown and damning crisis for Major League Baseball.