Finish the celebration: Nationals visit the White House

The World Series champion Washington Nationals continued their victory tour through D.C. on Monday, visiting with President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump at the White House.

The visit came just 48 hours after the team paraded down Constitution Avenue and a day after they celebrated at the Washington Capitals’ 4-2 win over the Calgary Flames, a game in which several Nats players rode shirtless on a Zamboni during second intermission.

The ceremony on the South Lawn opened with the White House band playing “Baby Shark,” which has been an anthem of sorts for the Nats’ championship run. Trump then took the podium to say a few words.

“Throughout this season, the Nationals captured the hearts of baseball fans across the region and across the country,” Trump said. “America fell in love with the Nats baseball … that’s all they wanted to talk about. That, and impeachment. I like Nats baseball much more.”

Trump recounted the Nationals’ now-infamous 19-31 start to the season, Max Scherzer’s All-Star performance and Kurt Suzuki’s walk-off, three-run homer in the Nats’ 11-10 win over the Mets on Sept. 4.

At that point, Suzuki took the podium at Trump’s behest.

“I love you all,” Suzuki said, wearing a red “Make America Great Again” hat. “I love you all. Thank you.”

Donald Trump, Kurt Suzuki
President Donald Trump reacts as Washington Nationals catcher Kurt Suzuki walks to a podium to speak during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP/Patrick Semansky)
President Donald Trump speaks during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Washington Nationals at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
President Donald Trump speaks during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Washington Nationals at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP/Patrick Semansky)
Fans watch during an event with President Donald Trump to honor the 2019 World Series Champion, Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
Fans watch during an event with President Donald Trump to honor the 2019 World Series Champion, Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP/Evan Vucci)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04:  Washington Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner and his wife Judy Lenkin take their seats on the South Lawn as U.S. President Donald Trump welcomes the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 04: Washington Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner and his wife Judy Lenkin take their seats on the South Lawn as U.S. President Donald Trump welcomes the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Getty Images/Win McNamee)
Fans do the "Baby Shark" during an event to honor the 2019 World Series Champion Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
Fans do the “Baby Shark” during an event to honor the 2019 World Series Champion Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP/Evan Vucci)
Washington Nationals' Juan Soto, Asdrubal Cabrera, Max Scherzer and Gerardo Parra perform "Baby Shark" during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Washington Nationals’ Juan Soto, Asdrubal Cabrera, Max Scherzer and Gerardo Parra perform “Baby Shark” during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) (AP/Patrick Semansky)
President Donald Trump hugs Washington Nationals catcher Kurt Suzuki, during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Washington Nationals on the balcony of the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington, as First Lady Melania Trump, left, and Washington Nationals coach Dave Martinez, second from right and general manager Mike Rizzo, far right, look on. Suzuki is wearing a Make America Great Again hat. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
President Donald Trump hugs Washington Nationals catcher Kurt Suzuki, during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Washington Nationals on the balcony of the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington, as First Lady Melania Trump, left, and Washington Nationals coach Dave Martinez, second from right and general manager Mike Rizzo, far right, look on. Suzuki is wearing a Make America Great Again hat. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) (AP/Patrick Semansky)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: U.S. President Donald Trump reacts to Washington National catcher Kurt Suzuki wearing a 'Make America Great Again' cap during a celebration of the 2019 World Series Champions at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 04: U.S. President Donald Trump reacts to Washington National catcher Kurt Suzuki wearing a ‘Make America Great Again’ cap during a celebration of the 2019 World Series Champions at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: At the invitation of U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd L), Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer makes brief remarks during a celebration for the 2019 World Series Champions at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 04: At the invitation of U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd L), Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer makes brief remarks during a celebration for the 2019 World Series Champions at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla)
Washington Nationals left fielder Juan Soto, center, speaks in front of first lady Melania Trump, from left, President Donald Trump, manager Dave Martinez and general manager Mike Rizzo during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Washington Nationals left fielder Juan Soto, center, speaks in front of first lady Melania Trump, from left, President Donald Trump, manager Dave Martinez and general manager Mike Rizzo during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP/Patrick Semansky)
President Donald Trump invites Washington Nationals infielder Howie Kendrick to speak during an event to honor the 2019 World Series Champion, Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
President Donald Trump invites Washington Nationals infielder Howie Kendrick to speak during an event to honor the 2019 World Series Champion, Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP/Evan Vucci)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04:  First baseman Ryan Zimmerman presents a Nationals jersey to U.S. President Donald Trump as Trump welcomes the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 04: First baseman Ryan Zimmerman presents a Nationals jersey to U.S. President Donald Trump as Trump welcomes the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Getty Images/Win McNamee)
Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg, center, speaks in front of first lady Melania Trump, from left, President Donald Trump, manager Dave Martinez and general manager Mike Rizzo during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg, center, speaks in front of first lady Melania Trump, from left, President Donald Trump, manager Dave Martinez and general manager Mike Rizzo during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP/Patrick Semansky)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: 2019 World Series Champions the Washington Nationals General Manager Dave Martinez delivers remarks at the invitation of U.S. President Donald Trump during a celebration at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 04: 2019 World Series Champions the Washington Nationals General Manager Dave Martinez delivers remarks at the invitation of U.S. President Donald Trump during a celebration at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: First baseman Ryan Zimmerman (C) holds up the Commissioner's Trophy as U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcome the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 04: First baseman Ryan Zimmerman (C) holds up the Commissioner’s Trophy as U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcome the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) (Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: 2019 World Series Champions Washington Nationals players (front row L-R) Fernando Rodney, Trea Turner, Aaron Burnett, Brian Dozier, Matt Adams and others stand on the Truman Balcony during a celebration of their victory at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 04: 2019 World Series Champions Washington Nationals players (front row L-R) Fernando Rodney, Trea Turner, Aaron Burnett, Brian Dozier, Matt Adams and others stand on the Truman Balcony during a celebration of their victory at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla)
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Donald Trump, Kurt Suzuki
President Donald Trump speaks during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Washington Nationals at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Fans watch during an event with President Donald Trump to honor the 2019 World Series Champion, Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04:  Washington Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner and his wife Judy Lenkin take their seats on the South Lawn as U.S. President Donald Trump welcomes the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Fans do the "Baby Shark" during an event to honor the 2019 World Series Champion Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
Washington Nationals' Juan Soto, Asdrubal Cabrera, Max Scherzer and Gerardo Parra perform "Baby Shark" during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
President Donald Trump hugs Washington Nationals catcher Kurt Suzuki, during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Washington Nationals on the balcony of the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington, as First Lady Melania Trump, left, and Washington Nationals coach Dave Martinez, second from right and general manager Mike Rizzo, far right, look on. Suzuki is wearing a Make America Great Again hat. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: U.S. President Donald Trump reacts to Washington National catcher Kurt Suzuki wearing a 'Make America Great Again' cap during a celebration of the 2019 World Series Champions at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: At the invitation of U.S. President Donald Trump (2nd L), Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer makes brief remarks during a celebration for the 2019 World Series Champions at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Washington Nationals left fielder Juan Soto, center, speaks in front of first lady Melania Trump, from left, President Donald Trump, manager Dave Martinez and general manager Mike Rizzo during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
President Donald Trump invites Washington Nationals infielder Howie Kendrick to speak during an event to honor the 2019 World Series Champion, Washington Nationals baseball team, at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04:  First baseman Ryan Zimmerman presents a Nationals jersey to U.S. President Donald Trump as Trump welcomes the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg, center, speaks in front of first lady Melania Trump, from left, President Donald Trump, manager Dave Martinez and general manager Mike Rizzo during an event to honor the 2019 World Series champion Nationals baseball team at the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: 2019 World Series Champions the Washington Nationals General Manager Dave Martinez delivers remarks at the invitation of U.S. President Donald Trump during a celebration at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: First baseman Ryan Zimmerman (C) holds up the Commissioner's Trophy as U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcome the 2019 World Series Champions, the Washington Nationals, to the White House November 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 04: 2019 World Series Champions Washington Nationals players (front row L-R) Fernando Rodney, Trea Turner, Aaron Burnett, Brian Dozier, Matt Adams and others stand on the Truman Balcony during a celebration of their victory at the White House November 04, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Nationals are Washington’s first Major League Baseball team to win the World Series since 1924. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

“What a good job he did, I didn’t know that was going to happen,” Trump said.

Max Scherzer would take the podium next.

“What a magical month,” Scherzer said. “When the city gets behind you and your teammates believe in each other … magic happens.”

Trump would then reference the team’s “Stay in the Fight” motto, and how the Nationals won five elimination games to earn their first World Series title in franchise history.

Juan Soto, the 21-year-old phenom who became the youngest player to hit three home runs in the World Series, said a few words before the 36-year-old NLCS MVP Howie Kendrick took to the podium.

“D.C. — you know how I feel about you,” Kendrick said. “You know how I feel about this team. Truly something special what we were able to do this year … it’s miraculous what we did.”

Anibal Sanchez, who came four outs shy of a no-hitter in Game 1 of the NLCS, would speak briefly before Ryan Zimmerman, the first-ever Nationals draft pick, presented Trump with a personalized white Nationals jersey with the number 45.

“We’d also like to thank you for keeping everyone safe in our country, and continuing to make America the greatest country to live in the world,” Zimmerman said to Trump.

World Series MVP Stephen Strasburg said the team’s 19-31 start makes the championship that much sweeter.

“We only had one choice: Stay in the fight,” Strasburg said. “And we stuck together and pulled for each other … what a way to celebrate, finally finishing that fight.”

The ceremony wrapped up with Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo and manager Dave Martinez.

“Not a baseball town? Not even close,” Rizzo said to the crowd of Nationals fans. “What a great fanbase we have.”

“We’re proud to say that we are the (2019) World Champions in a season that unified a region when the region needed unifying the most,” Rizzo said.

Despite those moments and the president referencing impeachment, the Nationals’ visit did not have as much political undertone as when the 2018 champion Boston Red Sox were honored by Trump but without manager Alex Cora, who did not attend that ceremony after citing his frustration with the administration’s efforts to help his native Puerto Rico recover from a devastating hurricane.

Martinez, whose parents are Puerto Rican, said he was hoarse and didn’t want to talk because of the partying the night before.

“We met with the Caps last night, and things got a little interesting,” Martinez said, before cracking a joke about his players not wearing shirts anymore.

“I’m so proud of this group of guys and what it means to this city to be a part of it,” Martinez said.

Trump then proclaimed the day “Washington Nationals Day.”

Reliever Sean Doolittle, who along with his wife has worked with Syrian refugees and military veterans and supports gay rights, did not attend the event.

Also among those not listed as being in attendance Monday are National League MVP candidate Anthony Rendon, outfielders Victor Robles and Michael A. Taylor, and pitchers Joe Ross, Javy Guerra and Wander Suero.

Of the 25 players on Washington’s World Series roster, 18 were in attendance. Principal owner Mark Lerner was the only member of the ownership group listed as attending.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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