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Red Sox to visit White House on February 15

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The Boston Globe reports that the World Series champion Boston Red Sox will visit the White House on February 15. Team president Sam Kennedy said that he expects “a healthy representation of ownership, executives, coaches and players” to attend the ceremony, but said it is not mandatory.

Which might lead one to ask whether manager Alex Cora, who has been highly critical of President Trump, plans to attend. The answer, which he first gave back in December: yep. His intention, he said, is “to represent 4 million people from back home the right way when we go there,” meaning Puerto Rico.

Obviously trips to the White House to meet the president are a longstanding tradition for championship teams. Trump’s rhetoric, policy positions and overall style, however, have made such visits anything but routine over the past two years. The Golden State Warriors chose not to attend, after which Trump claimed to have disinvited them. So few members of the Philadelphia Eagles planned to attend that the White House canceled the event.

No word on whether the Red Sox will be served food.

Zack Wheeler hits first career homer

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Mets starter Zack Wheeler wasn’t content with just dominating the Phillies on the mound Tuesday night in Queens. The 28-year-old decided to have himself a three-RBI night at the plate, too, including his first career home run.

With the Mets already leading 3-0 with two outs in the bottom of the fourth inning, Wheeler lifted a first-pitch Zach Eflin fastball out to left-center field, landing well beyond the 370-foot sign on the wall. Wheeler had previously helped his own cause, lacing a two-run double down the right field line off of Eflin in the second inning.

Wheeler entered the night with 22 hits in 194 career trips to the plate. Of his 22 hits, five went for extra bases (all doubles). On the mound, through six innings, Wheeler has held the Phillies scoreless on five hits with no walks and 11 strikeouts.

Todd Frazier broke the game open in the fifth inning, hitting a grand slam off of Drew Anderson to push the Mets’ lead to 8-0. If the Phillies lose tonight, they will have lost five of their last six games.