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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!”

Report: Yankees could be in on Nolan Arenado

Nolan Arenado
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The Yankees appear to have moved on from free agent Manny Machado this winter, but could they be turning their attention to Rockies superstar Nolan Arenado? That’s the idea floated by Andy Martino of SNY, who hears that GM Brian Cashman has been involved in recent discussions concerning the third baseman. No official comments have been made to the press yet, though, and it’s not clear whether the Yankees would prefer to pursue Arenado prior to the 2019 season or partway through it.

The 27-year-old infielder earned his fourth consecutive All-Star nomination, Silver Slugger, and Gold Glove award in 2018 after slashing .297/.374/.561 with 38 home runs, a .935 OPS, and 5.7 fWAR across 673 plate appearances. There’s no question he’s provided immense value to Colorado’s lineup over the last half-decade, and his consistency and incredible power at the plate helped form the basis of the record $30 million arbitration figure he presented to the team last week. The Rockies countered at $24 million, however, and in doing so may have jeopardized their chances of convincing the infielder to forego free agency in 2020 and take a long-term deal instead.

Assuming he declines to negotiate an extension with the Rockies, Arenado’s decorated résumé and career-best 2018 numbers should attract plenty of interest around the league — a reality that could put considerable pressure on the Yankees (or any other interested party) to finesse a deal sooner rather than later. For now, the club is prepared to enter the 2019 season with hot-hitting third baseman Miguel Andújar, whom Martino speculates would be the “centerpiece” of any trade with Colorado.