ATLANTA -- After the final out was made and the Braves had dropped a 4-3 contest to the Rockies on Saturday night at Turner Field, Chase d'Arnaud dashed into the clubhouse.The 29-year-old utility man wasn't rushing home or to see his family. He needed to make a concert. Fortunately, he
ATLANTA -- After the final out was made and the Braves had dropped a 4-3 contest to the Rockies on Saturday night at Turner Field, Chase d'Arnaud dashed into the clubhouse.
The 29-year-old utility man wasn't rushing home or to see his family. He needed to make a concert. Fortunately, he didn't need to travel very far.
As the lead singer and rhythm guitarist for the Chase d'Arnaud Band, d'Arnaud hopped onto a golf cart and headed to the plaza behind the center-field scoreboard, where he treated fans to a postgame show.
The crowd might not have been the same size as the one he has grown accustomed to playing in front of as a Major League baseball player. But the opportunity to play a concert was one he had envisioned since the band formed just before Spring Training.
"The first thing Clayton Cages, our producer, said when I had my first recording session was, 'When you're singing, just imagine singing at a stadium. Visualize Angel Stadium,'" d'Arnaud recalled before Saturday's game. "So I sat there in the studio just visualizing being in the middle of Angel Stadium.
"This is pretty damn close, so we're really pumped about it."
The band released an EP in May and has a full-length album scheduled for the fall. This season, d'Arnaud has been spotted playing his guitar and singing in the Braves' clubhouse, the Turner Field press box and even poolside to Jeff Francoeur on an off-day in Miami.
Michael Wright of Jackson, Miss., first learned about d'Arnaud's musical background when he saw the video of the utility man serenading Francouer. He quickly became hooked.
Wright listened to the band's music, and when he learned about the concert earlier this week on Twitter, he couldn't turn down the chance to attend the show.
"Its just cool to know these guys have a lot more talents than just what they show on the field," Wright said during the concert. "Chase is an awesome guy to watch. He plays the game with passion, and he's one of those guys I wish was in the lineup more. It looks like he has fun playing the game, but then knowing this talent, too, is a lot of fun."
d'Arnaud also played at the renowned Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Tennessee on the Braves' June 9 off-day, when the band visited the Hay Bale Studio. Located on site behind the main stage, the studio hosts two- or three-song recording sessions with some of the festival's biggest acts.
Although he has experienced some success with his band, d'Arnaud said he's constantly assuring the organization that baseball remains his top priority.
"It's this balancing act, and I can't ever make it seem like I'm putting more time into music than I am baseball, which I'm not," d'Arnaud said. "Baseball has a very demanding schedule, and I love it. And I love the music, too.
"So I'm just happy to be able to do both in the same day and entertain the baseball crowd with the music."
Pat James is a reporter for MLB.com based in Atlanta.