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Ned Yost to retire as Royals manager

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The Kansas City Royals just announced that Ned Yost will retire following the final game of the season. Mike Matheny will take over as the Royals manager for the 2020 season.

Yost, 65, led the Royals to victory in the 2015 World Series and to back-to-back American League pennants in 2014 and 2015. He will retire as the winningest manager in Royals history. In ten years at the helm in Kansas City he is 744-836 with five games remaining. Before he managed the Royals he managed the Milwaukee Brewers for six seasons, compiling a 457-502 record. In all, he is 1,201-1,338. When he’s done on Sunday he will finish 32nd all-time in games managed with 2,544.

The Royals now will look for the man who will, hopefully, see the current rebuild through. Multiple reporters have cited former St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny as Yost’s likely replacement. He currently serves as a special advisor in the club’s player development department. He managed the Cards from 2012-18, winning the NL pennant in 2013 and finishing with a record of 591-474 in St. Louis.

 

‘Cancer treatment broke my heart, but I’ve survived’

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When diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013 at 33, she had just settled back into working life after getting married and spending a year backpacking round the world.

“I noticed one of my nipples was inverted and when I Googled for answers, I thought: ‘Oh God, this can’t be me.'”

Three years later, after surgery to remove one breast, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and another major reconstructive operation, Kreena felt she was out of the woods.

She had even arranged to have some of her eggs harvested, so that embryos could be created and frozen in case the cancer treatment made her infertile.

But then on a trip to Canada “to celebrate the end of my life with cancer”, she felt grim.

She was tired, her chest was tight and she was struggling to breathe. Hospital doctors were baffled, until one cardiologist made a crucial link.

“He told me to squeeze his hand if I remembered having a red liquid during chemotherapy treatment,” Kreena recalls.

She did. The diagnosis was acute heart failure and she was rushed to intensive care.

Heart damage risk

Thanks to advances in treatments, more patients than ever are surviving cancer – but one in 10 are developing serious heart conditions, sometimes soon after finishing treatment, others years later.

The problem is caused by chemotherapy drugs damaging the heart muscle, meaning it can no longer pump properly – and this can lead to heart failure.

It’s even given rise to a new medical specialty called cardio-oncology, which focuses on delivering cancer treatments safely.

But working out which patients will get heart damage, and which won’t, has proved really tricky up until now.

Scientists knew that the very young and the elderly were at high risk, but they’ve now found out that faulty genes also play a role in increasing risk in other people.

“Some have a gene to cause heart failure and they get a second hit from the chemo,” explains Dr Alex Lyon, a consultant cardiologist at the Royal Brompton Hospital and Imperial College London.

“Most patients are told there’s a small risk of heart problems.”

A study of 200 cancer patients with cancer-therapy-induced cardiomyopathy, or CCM, by Imperial College London researchers has pinpointed the genetic risk factors, paving the way for testing of patients before they start chemotherapy to find out who is at risk.

The good news is that drug treatments can reduce the risk of heart damage in these patients and close monitoring can pick up potential problems early, Dr Lyon says.

‘Pregnancy too dangerous’

Even patients like Kreena, who were left fighting for breath, can return to live a normal life.

“My recovery is incredible,” she says. “I didn’t think I’d be coming home.”

During two weeks in a Canadian hospital, she sent voice messages back to relatives, preparing them for the worst.

After a two-month stay in the country on a no-salt diet and being cared for by her husband, her heart function had improved from 6% to 12%.

It was enough to allow Kreena to fly back to the UK, but that was just the start of her journey to recovery.

Medication and intense rehab followed, which allowed her heart to creep back into a normal range of function.

But there was one thing she was told was too dangerous – having a baby would put too much strain on her heart.

“So we started to look at other options,” she says.

‘I’m very grateful’

A surrogate was found, and using her own embryos, her daughter was born and is now 16 months old.

“Next month, I’m climbing in the Himalayas. I’m living an extraordinary life and I’m very grateful,” Kreena says.

“I thought I wouldn’t see my 40th birthday, but now it’s just two weeks away.”

Her expedition is part of of push to raise awareness of breast cancer in young women from the charity Coppa Feel, a cause that’s important to her.

“More people are surviving cancer after chemo and more are getting secondary diseases.

“There’s work to do educating patients and doctors.”

Exclusive: We Company CEO Neumann starts talks on his role at WeWork parent – sources

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WeWork co-founder Adam Neumann has started talks with board directors and investors to discuss his future role at the U.S. office-sharing start-up, including the possibility of giving up his title as chief executive, people familiar with the matter said on Monday.

Neumann has not yet agreed to step aside as CEO of WeWork parent We Company, and there is no certainty he will do so, the sources said. However, a board challenge planned by investors, including SoftBank Group Corp (9984.T) and Benchmark Capital, has been put on hold until these discussions produce an outcome, the sources added.

Were the talks with Neumann to lead to a resolution, they could avert a showdown between SoftBank and one of its biggest investments. We Company postponed its initial public offering last week following push-back from perspective investors, not just over its widening losses, but also over Neumann’s unusually firm grip on the company.

This was a blow for SoftBank, which was hoping for We Company’s IPO to bolster its fortunes as it seeks to woo investors for its second $108 billion Vision Fund. It invested in We Company at a $47 billion valuation in January.

But investor skepticism led to the start-up considering a potential IPO valuation earlier this month of as low as $10 billion.

One possibility that Neumann is discussing is transitioning to a chairman role, the sources said. Details of the discussions and what Neumann would request in exchange for giving up his CEO title could not be learned.

Another option would be for Neumann to remain as CEO, with an independent chairman brought in to join the board, according to one of the sources.

Were Neumann to agree to a leadership transition, it would make it unlikely that We Company can proceed with its plans to complete an initial public offering by the end of the year. This would mean it would have replace a $6 billion debt deal it reached with banks this summer that is contingent on the start-up going public.

We Company is considering slowing its expansion so it burns through less cash and would therefore require less funding in the absence of an IPO in the near team, one of the sources said.

The sources asked not to be identified because the matter is confidential. WeWork and SoftBank declined to comment. Neumann and Benchmark Capital did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

As co-founder of We Company, Neumann holds special voting shares that enable him to dismiss dissident board directors and shoot down any challenge to his authority.

However, SoftBank also has leverage. It could choose not to back We Company’s IPO or provide it with more funding. It has already funded the cash-burning start-up to the tune of $10 billion and was discussing committing another $1 billion to the IPO.

POWERFUL CEO

It is not uncommon for founders of fast-growing start-ups to be eccentric and control their companies tightly, even as they seek to attract stock market investors. Neumann, however, was criticized by investors and corporate governance experts for arrangements that went beyond the typical practice of having majority voting control through special categories of shares.

These included giving his estate a major say in his replacement as CEO, and tying the voting power of shares to how much he donates to charitable causes.

Neumann also entered several transactions with We Company over the years, making the company a tenant in some of his properties and charging it rent. He has also secured a $500 million credit line from banks using company stock as collateral.

Following criticism by potential investors, Neumann agreed to some concessions without relinquishing majority control. He agreed to give We Company any profit he receives from real estate deals he has reached with the New York-based start-up.

No member of Neumann’s family will be on the company’s board and any successor will be selected by the board, scrapping a plan for his wife and co-founder, Rebekah Neumann, to help pick the successor.

These changes did little to address concerns about the business model for We Company, which rents out workspace to clients under short-term contracts, even though it pays rent under long-term leases. This mix of long-term liabilities and short-term revenue raised questions among investors about how the company would weather an economic downturn.

Google Assistant Now Has New Voices and Here’s How to Change It on Your Phone

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Google launched some additional voice options for its Assistant last week, but it turns out no bugger knows how to switch between them.

A total of 11 new voices got rolled out in nine countries and good old Blighty was one of them, which is fantastic news for people like me, who need someone new to berate for its general (read: perceived) incompetence. I have a short temper and someone has to take the brunt of it, alright?

We asked who else would be checking out the new voice option in a Twitter poll, and it turns out the majority of you who responded didn’t actually know how to do it, so if you want to trade in your red OG voice (Google is labelling the voices as colour rather than genders) for the new orange voice, to give the insults you hurl at it a different hue, here’s how.

Summon your Assistant with your preferred prompt, and tap the tray icon in the bottom left. The next screen will display your profile picture in the top right (or a grey silhouette if you’ve never set one), so press that to bring up a series of tabs. The one you want is ‘Assistant’.

Under this tab, you’ll see an option labelled ‘Assistant Voice’, so we’re in the home stretch here, but we’ll continue to hold your hand anyway.

The next screen will bring up the voice options for your Assistant, so just tap on the colours (only red and orange in the UK), and exit back to your home screen. Hey presto! It’s done.

Former Texas Tech and NBA player Andre Emmett fatally shot in Dallas

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Andre Emmett, a former Texas Tech basketball standout, was shot and killed early Monday morning, Dallas police said.

Emmett, 37, was approached by two male assailants as he sat in his vehicle about 2:30 a.m., the Dallas Police Department said in a statement. One of the assailants brandished a handgun and an altercation ensued, during which Emmett was shot as he ran from the men, according to police.

A passerby found Emmett and called 911. He was taken to a hospital where he later died, police said. Witnesses told police the assailants fled in a white Chrysler 300.

Texas Tech basketball head coach Chris Beard described Emmett as a “Tech legend” and “arguably the best player in program history” in a video posted to the team’s Twitter account.

“Like most people, I don’t understand why terrible things like this happen to great people like Andre, but just know that he is in all of our thoughts and our prayers,” Beard said.

Emmett was inducted into the Texas Tech hall of fame in 2018. He briefly played in the NBA with the New Jersey Nets and Memphis Grizzlies. Emmett also played for Ice Cube’s Big3, a 3-on-3 half-court basketball league.

The Big3 said in a statement Monday that it was “simply heartbroken” by the loss of Emmett, who “was passionate about helping young people through his Dreams Really Exist foundation.”

Nets reportedly not likely to sign Carmelo Anthony, who still waits for his shot

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NBA training camps open next week, and Carmelo Anthony will be… on a couch somewhere.

Actually, probably in a private gym in New York working out and staying ready for the day the phone rings. However, he will not be in an NBA gym with an NBA team.

One place he had been rumored to go was Brooklyn, where Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving were reportedly pushing for him. That, however, is not happening.

After losing Wilson Chandler to a 25-game suspension, Anthony and players such as Dante Cunningham, Lance Thomas and Luol Deng emerged as viable options to sign. There’s been a sense around the Nets that players are hopeful to bring in Anthony, but the trust belongs with the front office.

However, the Nets are very unlikely to sign Anthony as of now, league sources told The Athletic.

It appears more likely that the team will decide to sign players it has worked out over the past few weeks, such as Thomas and former Minnesota Timberwolves and Los Angeles Clippers forward CJ Williams, sources said. The Nets have two roster spots left.

Executives around the league think there is a place for Anthony in the NBA. As has been written here previously, people I’ve spoken to about him say something along the lines of “he absolutely could still play in the league, he’s just not a fit with us.” After how things ended in Oklahoma City, and then went last season in Houston, they question if he will accept and off-the-bench scoring role. Anthony has said he would, his people have pushed that he would, but people are not sold.

Anthony’s going to get his shot, and maybe still in Brooklyn. It will be somewhere. But like Dwight Howard with the Lakers this season, this is his last shot — play a role, play hard, get it right or nobody is taking a chance on him again.

Mediator: French weight-loss drug trial over ‘up to 2,000’ deaths begins

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Servier, the drug’s manufacturer, is accused of deceiving users over the killer side effects of a drug later used to treat overweight diabetics.

Believed to be one of France’s biggest healthcare scandals, the firm is on trial for manslaughter and deceit.

Servier has denied the charges, saying it did not lie about the side effects.

French health experts believe the drug known as Mediator could have killed anywhere between 500 and 2,000 people before it was finally taken off the market in 2009.

The country’s state drug regulator, accused of not acting to prevent deaths and injuries, is also on trial.

The trial will involve more than 2,600 plaintiffs and 21 defendants, and is expected to run over the course of six months.

It will also look into why the drug, which was introduced in 1976, was allowed to sell for so long despite various warnings.

Lawyers representing the plaintiffs argue that the drug manufacturer purposely misled patients for decades, and that this was bolstered by lenient authorities.

Servier has been accused of profiting at least €1bn ($1.1bn, £880m) from the drug’s sales.

“The trial comes as huge relief. Finally, we are to see the end of an intolerable scandal,” Dr Irene Frachon, a pulmonologist credited with lifting the lid on the side effects, told Reuters news agency.

Dr Frachon’s research drew on medical records across France and concluded that there was a clear pattern of heart valve problems among Mediator users. This prompted many more studies which ultimately led to the drug’s ban.

One study concluded that 500 deaths could be linked to Mediator between 1976 and 2009. A second one put the figure at 2,000.

Those numbers have been disputed by Servier, which has said that there are only three documented cases where death can be clearly attributed to the use of Mediator. In other cases, it says, aggravating factors were at work.

Servier has said it will continue to compensate victims and has paid almost €132m to patients.

“There is a series of circumstances highlighting how all this took place,” a lawyer for the drug company told Reuters.

Several European countries, like Spain and Italy, banned the drug in the early 2000s.

Based on a molecule called benfluorex, Mediator was first developed in 1976 as a lipopenic – a drug to lower fat levels in the blood.

Later, it was prescribed to diabetics to help them lose weight.

But as its appetite-suppressant properties were recognised, family doctors began offering Mediator as a general treatment. Anyone worried about putting on the pounds could be offered a course of the drug – even though legally it was authorised for diabetics alone.

By the time it was taken off the market, it is believed that some five million people had taken Mediator, making it among the 50 most-prescribed drugs in France.

Fox Corp’s Rupert Murdoch gets paid $42.2 million in 2019

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Fox Corp (FOXA.O) Chairman Rupert Murdoch was paid $42.2 million in fiscal 2019, lower than last year, following the media company’s sale of its film and TV assets to Walt Disney Co (DIS.N).

In a filing on Monday, Fox said Murdoch’s compensation in 2018 was $49.2 million.

CEO Lachlan Murdoch’s compensation for the year ending June 30, 2019 was $42.1 million compared with $50.7 million a year earlier.

Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch will earn $29.3 million and $23.6 million respectively, from next year onwards, excluding compensation related to the Twenty-First Century Fox deal. (bit.ly/2laTNpv)

The newly spun-off media company Fox Corp debuted on the Nasdaq earlier in March following the $71 billion sale of Twenty-First Century Fox’s film and television assets to Walt Disney.

Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 3 may pack an 8-core AMD Ryzen processor

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The Microsoft October Event 2019 is coming up soon, on October 2, and we have high expectations for the launch of a new Surface Laptop 3, which sounds to be more powerful than ever.

A leak has suggested that this new laptop will make a departure from the Surface series to date by including AMD processors (CPUs), and may even offer an eight-core CPU, German site WinFuture reports.

We’ve heard previous rumblings of Microsoft ditching Intel for AMD in the Surface Laptop 3, but this is the first suggestion of eight-core AMD processors showing up in the laptop. Not only would this be a big move for Microsoft, it would also put AMD CPUs at the high-end of the product SKUs instead of sitting below Intel Ice Lake models.

The report mentions a number of different Surface Laptop 3 models, all with a larger 15-inch display. They range in specs from quad-core Ryzen CPUs up to the aforementioned eight-core model, with a hexa-core model as well. Memory could come in 8GB, 12GB or 16GB of RAM. Prices are anticipated to range from about $1,000 (about £800, AU$1,460) to $2,400 (about £1,930, AU$3,500).

Eight-core Ryzen CPUs exist – but not for mobile

Eight-core CPUs may seem pretty run-of-the-mill for AMD, given all the high-core-count CPUs the company has launched in its Ryzen 3000 series. But, the same can’t be said for its mobile processors. WinFuture previously reported the laptop may include a Ryzen 5 3550U or Ryzen 7 3750U CPU option, but both of these are quad-core CPUs.

None of AMD’s currently available mobile processors offer eight cores, in contrast to the company’s desktop processor offerings. So, what does this mean?

One possibility WinFuture puts forward is an AMD Epyc Embedded 3000 series system-on-chip (SoC). Several of these SoCs do feature eight cores. But, the Surface Laptop 3 would feel like an odd home for a chip that’s designed with servers and enterprise use in mind.

Another possibility is that AMD will launch new Ryzen mobile CPUs that will appear first on the Surface Laptop 3. The issue there is that it would be a little early for a new line of mobile Ryzen processors, as the Zen+ mobile processors only launched this past January.

Of course, a final possibility is that these rumors won’t play out in October. Perhaps we’ll still get AMD-powered Surface Laptop 3 models, but they may be limited to four cores. And, maybe we’ll still get eight-core variants, but it could be later on.

Florida officer fired after arresting two 6 year olds

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A school resource officer was fired after arresting two 6-year-old students last week, Orlando police said Monday.

Orlando Police Chief Orlando Rolón announced that school resource officer Dennis Turner was terminated as a result of arresting the two children without the approval of a commanding officer. An investigation is still underway into the incident.

“This will not stop,” the chief said of the probe. “But at my level, I have the opportunity to be able to exercise that and when I came in today, I knew there was no choice here. He was going to be terminated.”

Turner was a reserve officer, meaning he served at the will of the chief and could be fired before the end of an investigation, according to Rolón.

Rolón also said that he has reminded officers of the department policy that requires officers to get approval before arresting any child under the age of 12.

A 6-year-old girl was charged with battery after she kicked someone at Lucious and Emma Nixon Academy, a K-5th grade charter school in Orlando.

The girl’s grandmother, Meralyn Kirkland, attributed her behavioral problems to sleep apnea, according to the station. Her arrest was stopped after a supervisor learned of it and she was returned to school before being processed.

A second child, a 6-year-old boy, was arrested in a separate incident at the same school, was processed and later released to a relative.

Michael Dean, the head of the juvenile division at the prosecutor’s office, said Monday that his office was alerted the boy was on his way to the juvenile detention center and he intervened so that the boy wouldn’t spend time at the center.

State Attorney for the Ninth Judicial Circuit Aramis D. Ayala told reporters Monday that her office never had any intention of prosecuting the elementary-age children. The girl’s case was dismissed Monday morning.

Ayala said she has not received a case number for the boy, but once it is assigned, “it too will be immediately dismissed.”

Rolón told reporters Monday that Turner had a previous incident “in his personal life” involving his child that was investigated by a neighboring police department. An internal investigation sustained the allegations and Turner was disciplined at the time.

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