Stephanie Garcia faceplants on water jump, advances at USAs (video)

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Stephanie Garcia faceplanted on the penultimate water jump in her 3000m steeplechase heat at the USATF Outdoor Championships on Thursday, bringing back painful memories of the Olympic Trials.

Garcia was battling for the lead when she stutter-stepped to the water jump and tripped over it, breaking the fall to the Sacramento track with her hands.

“It’s like when you have that nightmare that you’re going to school and you forgot your homework or you’re only wearing your underwear,” Garcia told media later.

She recovered to finish fourth in her heat, advancing to the final Saturday (5:24 p.m. ET, NBC and NBC Sports Gold). She likely needs to finish in the top three Saturday to qualify for her third world championships team.

Garcia finished ninth at the 2015 Worlds, but she failed to make the 2016 Olympic team.

At the Olympic Trials, Garcia was in second place with 200 meters to go. But she was passed by two runners, falling out of Olympic qualifying position. She then fell over the final barrier and ended up fifth (video here).

“I think I have a little bit of some scars from that Trials race last year,” Garcia said. “I’m not going to let that bring me down.”

Garcia had to conquer the water jump one more time Thursday after her faceplant. She slowed to a near walk and stepped over the barrier to avoid another collapse.

“I kind of buried myself mentally a little bit, having to crawl out of it,” Garcia said. “I feel very confident in my fitness. I’m the fittest I’ve ever been. Everyone has to deal with the hurdles and the water jump, and I do, too.”

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Eddy Alvarez, Olympic short track medalist, to play for Miami Marlins

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Eddy Alvarez realized his MLB dream, six years after earning a Winter Olympic medal, and during a global pandemic that affected his club more than any other U.S. professional sports franchise.

Alvarez, a 2014 U.S. Olympic short track speed skating medalist, is being added to the Miami Marlins roster for Tuesday’s restart of their abbreviated season, president of baseball operations Mike Hill said Monday, according to Marlins beat reporters.

The 30-year-old was among a group added after as many as 18 Marlins tested positive for the coronavirus last week, forcing the club to cancel seven games.

Alvarez is believed to be the first U.S. Winter Olympian to become a Major League Baseball player.

He may be the second Olympic medalist in a sport other than baseball to make it to the majors, joining Jim Thorpe. (Michael Jordan tried to do so with the Chicago White Sox, playing Double-A in 1994, but returned to the Chicago Bulls in 1995.)

Alvarez, a Miami native, played baseball in high school and at Salt Lake Community College before focusing on short track in 2012 for a 2014 Olympic run.

He came back from missing the 2010 Olympic team and surgeries on both knees, reportedly leaving him immobile and bedpan dependent for four to six weeks, to make the Sochi Winter Games. Eddy the Jet earned a silver medal in the 5000m relay.

Then Alvarez returned to baseball after three years away. He signed a minor-league contract with the Chicago White Sox in June 2014. He worked his way through the minors between that franchise and the Marlins system.

Alvarez was a Kannapolis Intimidator, a New Orleans Baby Cake and a Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp.

Now, he’s a big leaguer.

“It definitely was a chance, picking up a kid who hasn’t played in three years who is starting at the age of 24,” Alvarez said in 2014. “It’s not your typical story, but I play like a 17-year-old kid. I’m running around everywhere. I’m diving around everywhere. I’m full of life. I definitely see my progression moving at a rapid pace.”

MORE: What Olympic baseball, softball return looks like in 2021

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Katie Ledecky balances glass of chocolate milk on her head while swimming

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Katie Ledecky will always remember Aug. 3 as the date she won her first Olympic gold medal, at age 15 in 2012.

Now, she can also associate it with the time she created another kind of buzz on social media.

The five-time Olympic champion posted video of her swimming the length of a pool while balancing a glass of chocolate milk on her head. Barely any, if any, milk spilled into the pool.

Ledecky swam as part of a new got milk? ad campaign.

“Hoooowww nervous were you when you did this?!” fellow Olympic champion and training partner Simone Manuel asked Ledecky on Instagram.

“I have never braced my core so hard,” Ledecky wrote. “It’s a great drill!”

“Try doing it breaststroke,” British Olympic 100m breaststroke champion and world-record holder Adam Peaty wrote.

“Is it wrong of me to think this is even more impressive than a few of your WR’s?!!!” wrote 1992 Olympic champion Summer Sanders.

MORE: The meet where Kathleen Ledecky became Katie Ledecky

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