Dodgers utilityman Nick Punto was born in San Diego, raised in Orange County, graduated from Trabuco Hills High School in Mission Viejo. But he’s playing for Italy in the World Baseball Classic in March.
“Because of my heritage, grandfather and grandmother were huge influences on me,” he said Saturday at the Dodgers’ FanFest. “Very passionate Italians. I think I enjoyed doing it for them. They’re not here, but then once I got there it became for me.”
“I really enjoyed meeting everybody on Team Italy,” he continued. “The players were unbelievable. The president of the federation is a good guy. I’ve grown to really embrace that.”