Published On: Wed, Jan 30th, 2019

Red Sox Mookie Betts won’t visit White House

On Saturday night, after accepting the Most Valuable Player award at the 96th annual New York Baseball Writers’ Association of America dinner, Boston Red Sox center fielder Mookie Betts said he would not join other members of his team when they visit the White House on May 9.

Betts told The Boston Globe, “I won’t be going there. I decided not to.”

The Red Sox were initially scheduled to visit the White House on February 15 but the government shutdown forced the visit to be rescheduled to May, when Boston has a three-game series at Camden Yards in Baltimore against the Baltimore Orioles.

photo/ Skeeze via pixabay.com

Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers has already said he would not visit the White House; pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez is leaning against it, and shortstop Xander Bogaerts and infielder Eduardo Nunez have not decided whether they will or won’t.

The Globe reported that Red Sox manager Alex Cora appears unlikely to attend.

Last September, when President Trump said that Democrats had inflated the number of people who died after Hurricane Maria hit the island, Cora commented that Trump’s comments were “disrespectful” to Puerto Rico, although he added that he “hate[s] that people that make it a political issue. This is about human beings.”

Red Sox players who have said they would attend include Matt Barnes, Ryan Brasier, Brock Holt, Brian Johnson, Mitch Moreland, Steve Pearce, Rick Porcello, Chris Sale, and Blake Swihart.

Other championship teams have had members refusing to visit Trump’s White House; many members of the New England Patriots skipped the trip in 2017. After the Golden State Warriors won the NBA championship in 2017, several Warriors said they would not visit if they were invited, including Stephen Curry. Before the team decided what they would do, President Trump tweeted, “Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team. Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!”

Curry stated, “It’s kind of funny that that tweet (Trump’s) was sent out before we had a chance to get together as a team. It is what it is. My stance is the same [as] yesterday. I’m trying to cement that even further about how things in our country have gone, especially with representing us.”

That, in turn, prompted NBA star LeBron James to tweet at Trump. “U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain’t going! So therefore ain’t no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!”


Mookie Betts photo/ Keith Allison

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