Sporting Kansas City announced on Wednesday a new pair of local voices for the club's radio broadcasts for the upcoming 2024 Major League Soccer season with the introduction of play-by-play commentator Blake Aerni alongside analyst and fellow KC native Jon Kempin.
A 13-year MLS veteran who participated in every level of United States youth and senior national teams, Kempin began his professional career in 2010 at the age of 17 as Kansas City's first Homegrown Player (2010-16). The Overland Park, Kan. native later joined the LA Galaxy (2017), Columbus Crew (2018-20) and D.C. United (2021-22), and was a member of teams that won two MLS Cups (2013, 2020), two U.S. Open Cups (2012, 2015) and a USL Cup (2013). An inductee in the Blue Valley North High School and Kansas Soccer Hall of Fames, Kempin holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Southern New Hampshire University and debuted as a radio analyst for Sporting KC matches during the 2023 regular season and playoffs.
Aerni has been part of Sporting KC radio broadcasts for the past two seasons, serving as a statistician in 2022 and a producer in 2023 in addition to an on-air role as co-host of the club's postgame show. An alum of Mill Valley High School in Shawnee, Kan., Aerni majored in broadcasting and sports media at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he was the play-by-play voice for Nebraska Soccer on B1G+ as well as the school's football, basketball and volleyball teams on 90.3 KRNU. Aerni also garnered experience as a sideline reporter and TV analyst for News Channel Nebraska in addition to his time as a videographer and beat writer for HuskerOnline. Most recently, Aerni called Rockhurst University men's and women's soccer matches on the GLVC Sports Network in 2023.
The duo will form the club's commentary team for matches throughout the 2024 season -- as well as the Sporting KC Show, which will debut on Feb. 23 and air weekly on Fridays to preview each weekend's match -- with all broadcasts airing on Sports Radio 810 WHB as the team's official radio partner. The broadcast audio will also be available to stream in the updated Sporting KC app and as an option for fans in the U.S. and Canada to select for Sporting KC home matches on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV.
Sports Radio 810 WHB is America’s largest all sports radio station covering over 42,000 square miles in portions of five states across the Midwest (Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska and Oklahoma). In addition to having the largest sports radio signal in the country, Sports Radio 810 streams live 24/7 at 810whb.com and listeners can tune in via Sports Radio 810 and ESPN Radio apps.
Locally owned and operated by Union Broadcasting along with ESPN Kansas City stations 94.5 FM and 1510 AM, Sports Radio 810 WHB has more than 100 years of history in Kansas City. Dating back to the inaugural match at Children’s Mercy Park, Sports Radio 810 WHB has broadcast Sporting KC matches since 2011.