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The next chapter for Chapman

by Matt Smith

A Spring Training game between the Cincinnati Reds and the Kansas City Royals wouldn’t normally be a cause of great excitement; however today’s encounter should be different.  The Reds’ $30.5m Cuban import Aroldis Chapman is set to make his debut, pitching out of the bullpen at some point behind Bronson Arroyo. First pitch is set for 20.05 GMT.

I’ve had some bad luck when it comes to catching Chapman in the past, so don’t be surprised if ‘rain stops play’ for the second straight day in Arizona.

The game isn’t being covered by a TV network so it’s not available to watch on MLB.TV, but radio coverage will be provided on Gameday Audio at MLB.com.  Listening to the build-up, the excitement as he comes into the game, the oohs and aahs from the crowd and the vivid descriptions of his performance should be a lot of fun.  It’s not clear when Chapman will be called to the mound after Arroyo has got his work in.  Reds manager Dusty Baker has joked previously that “if we pitch him [Chapman] later, fans will stick around and drink more beer”, so we may be in for a wait.

Incidentally, there still doesn’t appear to be an obvious link to the 2010 Gameday Audio-only annual subscription. New customers can now sign up for $19.95 (£13.18) at this billing page.  Gameday Audio is included in the MLB.TV and MLB.TV Premium subscriptions.

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