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Red Sox will visit White House

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Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports that the 2018 World Series champion Red Sox have been invited to the White House and have accepted the invitation. A date has not been determined yet, but Abraham says that the visit could take place before the start of the regular season.

Championship teams almost without fail visit the White House the following year to be officially recognized. However, Boston’s visit was less certain as manager Alex Cora is from Puerto Rico and he criticized President Trump’s tweets pertaining to Hurricane Maria. Trump claimed that the death tolls being publicized had been exaggerated. Cora said, “To be tweeting about 3,000 people and being efficient, it’s actually disrespectful for my country. We see it that way. I know he probably doesn’t feel that way.”

Cora added, “I respect him. He’s the President of the United States. But I don’t agree with a lot of the stuff he says about us.”

Carlos Beltrán didn’t visit the White House with the Astros after they won the World Series in 2017. Beltrán, too, was criticial of the Trump administration’s response to Hurricane Maria. Carlos Correa also skipped the visit to work on bringing aid to people in Puerto Rico. José Altuve, from Venezuela, did attend, but he didn’t look happy at all to be there, understandably.

It’s not known which members of the Red Sox, if any, will opt out of the visit. We do know at least one guy who’s going to be there: Heath Hembree. He told TMZ Sports in October, “Hell yeah! I f-ck with Trump!” When asked what he liked about Trump, Hembree responded, “Everything!”

Nationals’ major leaguers to continue offering financial assistance to minor leaguers

Sean Doolittle
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On Sunday, we learned that while the Nationals would continue to pay their minor leaguers throughout the month of June, their weekly stipend would be lowered by 25 percent, from $400 to $300. In an incredible act of solidarity, Nationals reliever Sean Doolittle and his teammates put out a statement, saying they would be covering the missing $100 from the stipends.

After receiving some criticism, the Nationals reversed course, agreeing to pay their minor leaguers their full $400 weekly stipend.

Doolittle and co. have not withdrawn their generosity. On Wednesday, Doolittle released another statement, saying that he and his major league teammates would continue to offer financial assistance to Nationals minor leaguers through the non-profit organization More Than Baseball.

The full statement:

Washington Nationals players were excited to learn that our minor leaguers will continue receiving their full stipends. We are grateful that efforts have been made to restore their pay during these challenging times.

We remain committed to supporting them. Nationals players are partnering with More Than Baseball to contribute funds that will offer further assistance and financial support to any minor leaguers who were in the Nationals organization as of March 1.

We’ll continue to stand with them as we look forward to resuming our 2020 MLB season.

Kudos to Doolittle and the other Nationals continuing to offer a helping hand in a trying time. The players shouldn’t have to subsidize their employers’ labor expenses, but that is the world we live in today.