MLB Adds VR to Baseball Broadcasts


Video in the new At Bat VR app won’t be in VR. Rather, the app places you behind home plate and shows you graphical depictions of each pitch. That includes a colored streak — red for strikes and green for balls — tracing the ball’s trajectory.

The data come from sensors Major League Baseball already has in its stadiums.

Traditional TV coverage of the games will appear on a virtual screen in front of you.

MLB has been leading the way for years now when it comes to live streaming of sports, if not all events. No surprise they’d be at the front of the pack when it comes to experimenting with VR.

I’ve watched “VR” broadcasts of basketball games, which have basically been 360-degree videos shot from courtside. They’re fun as a gimmick, but not really watchable for a full two-plus hour game. MLB’s approach sounds like a better first step towards adding real value to the traditional user experience of watching a ball game.

USA Today has an eyes-on preview of the new app, which launches June 1 on Google’s Daydream VR platform.