Donald Trump praises Red Sox at White House ceremony as several players, manager skip event

WASHINGTON — The Boston Red Sox celebrated their World Series title at the White House on Thursday afternoon.

Or, at least some of them did.

In the latest politically charged championship celebration under President Donald Trump, a group of primarily white players and executives crowded behind the president on the South Lawn, while most persons of color associated with the team — including manager Alex Cora — skipped the trip.

Stars Mookie Betts and David Price, who are black, were among those absent, in addition to several Latino players.

Cora, who is Puerto Rican, has said repeatedly that he decided to forego the visit because of the ongoing recovery efforts in his home country following Hurricane Maria. Cora has been critical of the Trump administration's response to the crisis.

"I just don’t feel right going and celebrating while people are struggling back home," he said on Boston radio station WEEI on Wednesday.

Is it extremely rare for a championship sports team to visit the White House without its coach or manager.

The Red Sox were instead represented by several executives, including owner John Henry and president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski.

Individual athletes have long skipped celebratory White House visits for political reasons, but the events themselves have become strikingly more political under Trump.

The president has yet to invite an NBA or WNBA championship team to visit the White House in his first two-plus years in office, and only one women's sports team — the Baylor basketball team — has received its own celebration. Trump has also rescinded White House invitations to multiple teams, including the Golden State Warriors in 2017 and the Philadelphia Eagles in 2018. 

Contact Tom Schad at [email protected] or on Twitter @Tom_Schad.

Donald Trump welcomed the 2018 World Series champion Boston Red Sox to the White House on Thursday. (Photo: JIM WATSON, AFP/Getty Images)

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