TEL AVIV, Israel — As a baseball-crazed kid growing up in Miami, Danny Valencia dreamed of playing in the Major Leagues. The thought of heading to the Olympics, for a foreign country no less, never crossed his mind.
But after nine years and nearly 100 homers in the big leagues, that’s the next surreal step for the 35-year-old Valencia, who recently became an Israeli citizen thanks to his Jewishness and is now the star player in Team Israel’s improbable run to the Tokyo Games. Baseball is returning to the Olympics after being dropped for 2012 and 2016 and Israel is one of six teams vying for the three medals.
“It’s pretty cool to be playing in the Olympics,” he told The Associated Press at a team