List of Olympic medalists in baseball

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Baseball is a sport formerly contested at the Summer Olympic Games. It was originally played as a demonstration sport in seven Olympics—1912, 1936, 1952, 1956, 1964, 1984, and 1988[1]— more than for any other sport in Olympic history.[2] These exhibitions featured a single game at the first five Olympic appearances and then a tournament format in 1984 and 1988.[1] The International Olympic Committee (IOC) granted baseball official status on October 13, 1986, for the 1992 Summer Olympics.[1][3][4] The sport was contested at each subsequent Games through 2008, after which the IOC removed it from the roster of Olympic sports.

In 1992, the first official Olympic baseball tournament was won by the Cuban team. Cuba had boycotted the 1984 and 1988 Olympics, missing the previous exhibition baseball tournaments, but entered in 1992 as the favorite, having won the past 12 world championships and with a 62–1 record in international competitions since 1986.[5] The Cubans went undefeated in the 1992 Olympics and trailed in only one game.[5] Despite Cuban pitcher Rolando Arrojo defecting ten days prior to the start of the Games, Cuba again went undefeated throughout the 1996 tournament en route to a second consecutive gold medal.[6] The United States won their first medal in 1996, taking the bronze in their home country Games in Atlanta. The 2000 Summer Olympics were the first time professional players were allowed to compete in baseball, but Major League Baseball (MLB) did not permit any player on the 40-man roster of an MLB team to compete.[7] The United States won their second consecutive medal in Sydney, securing the gold medal in a 4–0 victory over Cuba in the final. This was the first Olympics in which Cuba lost a game, first beaten by the Dutch team in round-robin play and then again by the Americans in the gold medal game.[8] In 2004, the United States, reigning champions, did not qualify for the Olympic tournament. Cuba once again took the gold by beating the Australian team, whose silver medal finish was the country's lone podium placing in Olympic baseball.[9]

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