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The Excruciating Ways to Catch Baseball
April 11th, 2009 by Ice Cream Jonsey

Somebody might tell you that MLB has their act together when it comes to understanding the opportunities that the Internet offers the average fan to catch their favorite team. THIS IS COMPLETE BULLSHIT. You might even hear them say that Bud Selig should be congratulated for these advancements, as if fucking Selig has ever been on the Internet in his entire life. There isn’t a single commissioner in sports doing a good job right now, but that’s another story.

Here’s a breakdown on the sheer incompetence of getting your game. (Please note that I am writing this with the perspective of a guy living in a different market than his team – I live in Colorado and only care about the Blue Jays. If you are within like 200 fucking miles of a stadium, you get to enter the world of PROXIES and various other stupid horseshit.)

 

DIRECTV MLB EXTRA INNINGS

So, it’s Saturday and there’s nothing I’d rather do than climb out of bed, shake about ten pounds of cat hair off me, and catch Roy Halladay vs Cliff Lee, in what should be demonstrative proof that Lee winning the Cy Young Award last year was fucking horseshit. 

Directv is offering a “preview” of MLB Extra Innings. It’s $160 for the entire year, and honestly, with how much the equivalent is for the NFL, that sounds like a great deal. (I will go ahead and assume that Directv’s NFL Ticket will break $240 in September.) 

The problem is that they don’t broadcast all the games! Are you fucking kidding me? And more – how is this game not on? This is fucking inexcusable. I know that Lee is turning back into a shitbag, but for fuck’s sake. 

More, it already takes effort to keep track of the regular game times for the Jays. I work until 7 or 8 PM, and their home games start at 5:07PM MDT. I’m not physically around to use the Directv solution, but let’s say I get out early (or the Jays are on the west coast) – I have to seriously consult Directv’s schedule as well? Fuck that. Seriously, fuck that. Again, I understand if they can’t broadcast Rockies games, but otherwise they need to seriously fuck off. 

 

MLB.TV

This is $14.95 a month. And maybe it’s okay this year, but I’ve had it for the 2008 and 2007 seasons, and it’s just shit. Something about it isn’t compatible with our anti-virus software at work, which is fucking amazing, in so much that all anti-virus software has bloated themselves into some kind of security suite, and that whoever put MLB.tv together can’t just give you a link to a a video or audio stream. And Christ, the thing is always locking up. This is a miserable ripoff – again, maybe it gets better in like mid-July, when interest has cooled off and there are less people catching the games, but I had games locking up on me at that point as well last year. (If your experiences with it are better this year, that is awesome, and do feel free to describe what it’s like in the comments. I’m honestly curious.)

 

iPHONE GAMEDAY APP

This is okay, I guess – it’s $10 for the entire year. Audio only, except – except! They will put small videos of clutch hits and such for you to watch, if you really want to. I’m fine with audio-only, as long as I can choose my own announcers, which I can with this.

The app lets you click on the box score, and see who is fielding where – it’s got lots of easy-to-implement stuff that reminds me of how the Diamond Mind baseball game is set up.

I did buy this, and I think it’s good, overall. The really maddening part is how they deal with commercials. The audio feed goes silent, but not immediately! I honestly think some asshole is sitting there with his finger on the “mute” button at the source, and he simply forgets to hit the button right away. (The most annoying commercial in the world right now is the one for Super-8 on Toronto’s the FAN station.) I’m fairly certain that the same guy forgets to consistently put the sound back on right away .

 

ACTUALLY GOING TO THE GAMES

Well, yes, this would be best.

 

So, I don’t know. There really is no perfect solution for catching the games live. Directv is too demanding, MLB.tv is an enormous pain in the ass, and the iPhone app can’t get me consistent audio. The whole thing is fucked.


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