With a 60-32 record headed into the MLB All-Star break, the Los Angeles Dodgers appear poised to make another run at a World Series trophy after falling short to the Red Sox last season. And if they finish the job this time, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts is already signaling his decision when it comes to a potential White House visit.
“We have to win it first,” Roberts told the Los Angeles Times in an interview published Monday. “But one trip to D.C., playing the Nationals, is plenty for me.”
The one-time Red Sox outfielder and 2004 World Series winner’s comments come more than eight months after President Donald Trump singled him out for pulling Dodgers starting pitcher Rich Hill, in the midst of a one-hit shutout, during the seventh inning of Game 4 of World Series. The Red Sox subsequently hammered the Dodgers’ bullpen in the 9-6 comeback win, and Trump tweeted that the decision to take out Hill was a “big mistake.”
At the time, Roberts downplayed the criticism; in his interview with the Times, he explained that he doesn’t invest much stock in Trump’s opinion — a reality that Roberts says he finds “sad.”
“There’s no benefit to responding to an irresponsible tweet irresponsibly, or ignorantly,” Roberts told the Times. “So, I guess it’s one of those ‘consider the source’-type things. Which is sad, because that’s the leader of our country. That I have to say, ‘Consider the source.’ It’s sad.”
Should the National League-leading Dodgers win the World Series this fall, Roberts would hardly be the first MLB manager to decline the Republican president’s White House invitation. Following the Trump administration’s treatment of Puerto Rico after the island territory was devastated by hurricanes, Red Sox manager Alex Cora skipped the team’s celebratory White House visit this past May.
Roberts and Cora made history last fall as the first minority managers to face off in the World Series. If the Dodgers are lucky this year, perhaps they could become the first MLB managers to consecutively decline White House invitations, too.