Zeid working to recruit Ausmus for Israel trip

Zeid working to recruit Ausmus for Israel trip

DETROIT -- Astros relief pitcher Josh Zeid is hoping to join some fellow Jewish baseball players on a trip to Israel to help promote the sport.

Zeid was hoping to recruit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus, who managed Zeid for team Israel during last year's World Baseball Classic, to join some players on the trip. Ausmus, the longtime Astros catcher, is half-Jewish.

"I know someone from Major League Baseball is trying to set up a trip to Israel, so I'll see if he's actually interested in that and kind of go from there," Zeid said of Ausmus. "He's a big figurehead for me and for us."

Zeid said that Jewish youth have the opportunity to take a free trip to Israel prior to turning 26 as part of a birthright trip.

"If you're Jewish, you get to go to the Holy Land and all that stuff, and the all the guys are trying to set up a Major League Baseball version of that because a lot of us growing up didn't have the time or vacation period to go to Israel," Zeid said. "We're trying to see if we can [begin] a little baseball grassroots in Israel."

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.