Opinion: MLB x VR Headsets is a winning combination to preserve baseball


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In the wake of the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal and their unholy trash can x tech mash-up, some people might call me crazy.

Crazy like a fox!

Right now, MLB is being nothing short of negligent in pursuing alternative means of watching a game. And they need it to hold the attention of a younger audience. While other leagues explore other broadcasting means, the 151-year-old organization continues to view the world as a 151-year-old.

That has to change to breathe new life into the game!

Growing up, I only understood one way to take in a four-hour ballgame, sitting on a sofa while a Producer at Wrigley Field chose what angles of a game you can see, when.

Real talk. In an era when content is king, that’s not cool! It’s just pigeon holding your fan base and locking them into conversations about “The next best great reality TV show eating contest host in the studio” and “What’s going on in Section 8A, Row 3 with that guy who’s ignoring the game he’s attending?”

Since the introduction of true VR systems (not that Virtual Boy crap from the 90s) like the Oculus Quest, which has both power and portability, nothing is impossible anymore…including broadcasting live games from a player’s point of view.

As a viewer, think of it:

You’re at the plate in a pivotal 3-2 count with 2 outs down by 2 with a man on 3rd. You’re on the pitcher’s mound, the same situation! Be it warming up in the batter’s box glancing into the grandstands or in the dugout with the team listening in on those mid-inning conversations.

Now imagine being able to switch your view in the game to multiple players!

No longer do you depend on “Camera 1” and “Camera 2” to follow the action. You can do so on your terms with a 360 view from specially designed ball cap sewn cameras atop a player’s cap.

Are you game yet?

Tie that into the live sound from the source or a split between radio/tv announcer feeds, and you have a new drug perfect for the next generation.

MLB is the perfect sport to accommodate such technology. The action is minimal but the experience would be mind-bending for all ages! Seeing first hand catching a ball at high speeds just about to go over a fence! That’s something anyone ages 8-80 would easily enjoy in real-time, unlike other sports where there may be a sickening factor to the experience.

Think hockey board checks or the constant bouncing up and down that comes from running a court during an NBA game.

Did you ever think the lack of action during an MLB game could aid the experience?

Emerging yourself in the experience of MLB will be the ultimate savior of the game. In an era when they talk about shortening the time of a game and destroying the strategy (which kids need to learn) that comes with baseball, there is no better time to introduce such technology.

An opportunity for a 360 camera lies in the button of every MLB ball cap.

With the introduction of 5G in America, there is no better time to get into it. So get your ass in gear MLB and give your fans the experience they deserve.

You not only have the chance to preserve the game as-is, but you also have the opportunity to save it for generations to come.

Shane Saathoff
Shane Saathoffhttp://www.SocialSnowball.com
An active writer for two decades, Shane's focuses on local news and events throughout the area, Shane is an active historian, science nerd, and tech geek. Shane is a native of Bourbonnais, IL, and alumni of Olivet Nazarene University.


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