President Barack Obama will welcome the World Series champion Chicago Cubs at the White House on Monday, just five days before he leaves office.
White House press secretary Josh Earnest confirmed the visit Wednesday and said Obama “is really looking forward to it.”
The move is slightly unusual. The reigning World Series champions normally make the traditional White House visit during the following MLB season.
The Cubs, who ended a 108-year title drought in Game 7 against the Cleveland Indians, were hoping to get to Washington, D.C., before Obama left office. Though the president is a White Sox fan, he calls Chicago home and rooted for the North Siders since his team didn't make the playoffs.
NBC 5's Mary Ann Ahern first reported the visit on Tuesday.
The president invited the Cubs to the White House in a phone call to Joe Maddon following the team's victory, and with the club all assembled in Chicago for this weekend's Cubs Convention, arranging travel to Washington D.C. was a solution that worked out well for the team to see the president.
While the Cubs visit to the White House comes five days before president-elect Donald Trump's inauguration, the team will still have a connection to the new administration. Trump has nominated Cubs co-owner Todd Ricketts as deputy commerce secretary. Ricketts will join his sister, co-owner Laura Ricketts, brother, co-owner Tom Ricketts, and the team at the presidential reception.
The Cubs will be the second Chicago team to visit the Obama's White House. The president also hosted the Chicago Blackhawks after their three Stanley Cup championships since 2010.