Chapman throws live BP

Aroldis Chapman took the latest step forward on Wednesday in his efforts to return to pitching for the Reds. Chapman threw 27 pitches of live batting practice. He faced hitters Brayan Pena and Neftali Soto. Third base coach Steve Smith also stood in for one at-bat.

“He threw all of his pitches. He was very sharp,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “Good velocity. Good slider. He threw his changeup. He looked like midseason form.”

“I felt very good. I didn’t feel anything out of the ordinary,” Chapman said with Pena translating.

Chapman elected to throw from behind a screen this time. He will likely not use it the next time he faces hitters, which will likely be this weekend in Atlanta.

“It seemed to make sense to get the screen out there to treat it like it would be mostly in Spring Training,” Price said. “Inevitably obviously, he’ll be throwing to hitters without a screen. That will be another step in the process.”

After the session in Atlanta, the next step is for Chapman to begin a rehab assignment in the Minors.

More to come on


He needs to be on the 25 man roster for the Atlanta series.

No way he is on the roster by then….there is going to be a huge mental hurdle for him in regards to this

I wouldn’t expect to see him until the May 1 series vs. Milwaukee at the earliest. That may even be pushing it. Figure he throws another life BP on Friday/Saturday then Back to Back games in rehab early next week.

Outstanding! Who would have thought he would be pitching in April after that very close call.

Since the accident in March, I’ve thought it would be just short of miraculous of Chapman pitches earlier than June 1, given the severity of the injury. The psyche can stay damaged long after the bones heel. Who among us wouldn’t be scared to take the mound having had a baseball smash into the front of our skull? If he makes it through the next batting practice without a screen and has a couple of rehab outings, and then comes back much sooner, as it now appears, it’s a testament to this man’s mental makeup, courage and determination. Those are precious attributes for a dominant closer. We could be seeing the emergence of a guy with an inner strength and drive that we’ve not seen at this level in a Red in a long time. And if he comes back and dominates on the mount, it will immediately improvement our bullpen, which is an early-season disappointment, and it might kick start this team. The Reds need a fire-in-the-belly guy who’s one of the really good players. Perhaps Chappy will be that guy.

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