Team USA flag bearer Alvarez: ‘It’s an honor’

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2:01 PM UTC

Eddy Alvarez is set to make even more Olympic history.

Alvarez, a member of USA Baseball and the Marlins’ Triple-A club, will serve as a flag bearer for Team USA during the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics on July 23, making him the first baseball player ever selected for that honor.

“It is an honor and a privilege to be named as one of the flag bearers by my fellow Team USA athletes for the Opening Ceremony,” Alvarez said. “Being a first-generation Cuban American, my story represents the American Dream. My family has sacrificed so much for me to have the opportunity to wave this flag proudly.”

Although this will be Alvarez’s first time representing Team USA in baseball, he already knows what it is like to win an Olympic medal as he won silver as part of the 5,000-meter four-man short track speedskating team during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. When Alvarez, 31, was called up to the Marlins to make his MLB debut in 2020, he became the first Winter Olympic Games medalist to play Major League Baseball and the first non-baseball Olympian to play in the Majors since Jim Thorpe in 1913.

“I am grateful for my time with U.S. Speedskating and USA Baseball, as well as for all of my teammates, and I am humbled to lead Team USA into the Tokyo Olympic Games,” Alvarez said.

Alvarez will carry the flag alongside four-time Olympic champion basketball player Sue Bird. They are the first duo to share the honor of leading the delegation into the Opening Ceremony. USA Baseball’s first game of the Olympics is scheduled for July 30 vs. Israel.

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