On Saturday, Aroldis Chapman took the next step in his recovery from being struck in the face by a line drive in spring training.
Before Cincinnati's game in Atlanta, the closer toed the rubber and threw live batting practice to the likes of teammates Ramon Santiago, Neftali Soto and Tucker Barnhart. According to C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer, what made this outing different from his throwing session on Wednesday is that he threw without the protection of a screen.
All in all, Chapman's session was split in two, giving the simulation that he pitched one inning and then sat for awhile before returning for a second inning of work.
The plan is for Chapman to throw one more simulated game like the one from Saturday before heading to the minors for rehab assignments.
There's still no definite timetable for Chapman's return. However, if all goes well, it's not out of the realm of possibility that we could see Chapman pitching in a major league game by the middle of May. And that's undoubtedly a marvelous prospect.