President Donald Trump says he will watch the Washington Nationals play in the fifth game of the World Series. Chef José Andrés, not the president, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch.
Trump said Thursday that he plans to attend Game 5 at Nationals Park on Sunday. The Nats led the series 2-1.
Trump played high school baseball at the New York Military Academy and has thrown out the ceremonial first pitch at major league games.
Asked if he would do so again this weekend, he joked on Thursday that he would have to dress up with a lot of "heavy armor," in an apparent reference to a bulletproof vest. He said he would look too heavy. "I don't like that," he said.
On Friday morning, the Nats announced that Andrés will throw out the first pitch of Game 5.
The chef and humanitarian said on Twitter that he was humbled by the invitation, calling it a "big big big honor."
After the Nats lost Game 3, Andrés tweeted, "We will win tomorrow, and then on Sunday too!"
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Andrés has been a star of the D.C. restaurant scene for decades and was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for his work with his nonprofit World Central Kitchen, which feeds victims of disasters.
He and the president also have feuded publicly. Andrés dropped plans to open a restaurant in the Trump International Hotel following comments Trump made about immigrants. The Trump Organization filed a $10 million breach of contract lawsuit that was later settled.
When Trump backed a government shutdown in December 2018 and January 2019, Andrés fed furloughed workers.
Trump is a New York Yankees fan who would often attend their games and sit in the owners' suite or near the dugout. He welcomed the Astros to the White House last year after they won the 2017 World Series and said their victory was even more special following the devastation Hurricane Harvey wrought on the Texas city.
Nats pitcher Aníbal Sánchez said people should "respect that situation" if the president wants to attend the game.
"He's the president, and if he wants to come, why not?" Sánchez said.
Unlike past presidents, Trump doesn't get out much in D.C. After living in Washington for nearly a year, Trump had not enjoyed a single non-working meal at a restaurant that didn't pay him rent. He hadn't taken in a performance at the Kennedy Center; hadn't been to a sporting event; hadn't toured most of the sights.
Trump would be the first sitting president to attend a World Series game since George W. Bush threw out the ceremonial first pitch at New York's Yankee Stadium before Game 3 in 2001.
Other presidents who attended World Series games were Woodrow Wilson (1915), Calvin Coolidge (1924), Herbert Hoover (1929, 1930, 1931), Franklin Roosevelt (1933, 1936), Dwight Eisenhower (1956), Jimmy Carter (1979) and Ronald Reagan (1983).
Editor's Note: The Nationals lost in Game 3 on Friday night, guaranteeing a fifth game in Washington, D.C. This article has been updated with the latest information.