US President Donald Trump will be attending World Series Game 5 in Washington, DC, if the event extends that far and does not end in a sweep for the Washington Nationals.
But MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said Trump’s arrival to Nationals Park on October 27 will be delayed until after first pitch to minimize fan disruption to the heightened security the visit requires.
Trump also will not be throwing out the first pitch before the game, as has been customary for sitting US presidents attending MLB jewel events.
“We actually had a conversation with him about first pitches,” Manfred said. “His view was that in order to make the fan experience as positive as possible, he would arrive at Game 5 sometime after the game began so it wouldn’t interfere with fans getting into the stadium.
“Quite frankly, we were very grateful for that. We thought it was a great decision on the President’s part,” Manfred added.
The first pitch for Game 5, perhaps ironically, will be thrown out by noted chef Jose Andres, who was to open a restaurant at a Trump-owned hotel in Washington several years ago, but backed out of that arrangement and has had a multiyear public feud with Trump over his disparagement of Mexicans.
Andres himself had somewhat mixed feelings on the first pitch invitation, tweeting that “I’m humbled by the invitation, and I realize it is a big, big, big honor, but I really hope that by [October 26] all of Washington will be celebrating the Nationals are the 2019 MLB World Series Champions.”
MLB, meanwhile, will be continuing to investigate the Houston Astros following their firing of assistant general manager Brandon Taubman for taunting a series of reporters earlier this month. League commissioner Rob Manfred said a probe of the club would continue after the World Series concludes, including talking with team owner Jim Crane, and Manfred did not rule out the possibility of more discipline being levied upon the club.
There are “aspects of this that go beyond the [Taubman] incident,” Manfred said. “There are other things we want to talk to the Astros about. I would say that there are a variety of issues. I’m not going to narrow it to the statement [the Astros released improperly condemning a Sports Illustrated story about the incident]. We’re going to continue to review the situation and have conversations. It’s one thing to come and investigate, in 24 hours, a specific incident. This will take a little more time.”
Manfred said there will be a a public statement about the Astros after the league probe is finished.
“I think we’ve had a good record of transparency when we make decisions,” he said. “So think when we get to the point when we have something more to say, it’ll be public. Again, I want the expectation that this piece is going to be as quick as the last piece, because there’s more to it.”