WASHINGTON, D.C. (CNN) – Washington Nationals Pitcher Sean Doolittle has declined to visit the White House Monday for a ceremony honoring his team’s historic World Series win.
In an interview with the Washington Post, he said President Donald J. Trump’s rhetoric is the reason.
The Nationals beat the Houston Astros in game seven on Wednesday, earning the team’s first-ever World Series title.
Among other issues, Doolittle told the Post he feels “Very strongly” about Trump’s “Issues on race relations.”
He pointed to the Central Park Five, the Fair Housing Act and Trump’s comments in the wake of a 2017 White Nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Doolittle said Trump’s rhetoric has enabled and empowered racism and white supremacy.
CNN has reached out to the Washington Nationals for a comment.