I wasn't entirely sure how to Google this (I tried a few searches with combinations of USA softball 2004 alternates athens and didn't get much useful back). I asked around some of my friends, and pretty much have been told "Sometimes the alternates go and sometimes they don't." I've been told the Australian softball team's alternates went to Athens in 2004, although not if they stayed in the Olympic village with the rest of the team, and I don't know if that's true of the alternates for other countries.
Does anyone happen to know anything concrete on this? I have to know if I'm writing this character as being out of the country for a few weeks in part of this story or not.