Longtime big leaguer Todd Frazier banged out four hits, including a homer, leading the United States to a 4-2, Olympic-berth-clinching victory over Venezuela on Saturday night in Port St. Lucie, Florida.
The Americans won the Baseball Americas Qualifier competition and will now join host Japan, Israel, Mexico and South Korea at the six-team Olympic baseball tournament, to be played July 28 to Aug. 7 in Fukushima and Yokohama.
Baseball had been played at the summer games from 1992 to 2008 but had been absent from the past two Olympics.
Despite the sport’s roots in America, the United States has generally shown well on the international stage but has been short of dominant.
The U.S. won gold in 2000 in Australia and bronze in 1998 and 2008. The Americans failed to qualify for the 2004 tournament.