TBS PitchTrax

The little rectangle on the right side of the screen bugs me. No, it’s not a crime against humanity, but I tend to have a pretty good ability to remember how a sequence of pitches has gone — at least to remember enough to make the whole batter-pitcher confrontation meaningful for me — so I really don’t need it.

Jay at Fack Youk has a much more considered opinion of it all that’s worth checking out.

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  1. Melody said...

    I prefer when they do a quick run-down after the at-bat is over, but that’s just me.
    I always wonder how accurate these things are, and how exactly they’re calibrated.  Since the strike zone changes for every player, how is that done?  Do we really know with certainty that a close pitch is really a ball, or could the sensors be a bit off?
    I’ve always been curious about it.

  2. Jon said...

    I like it, but only because they have an offset camera. Yes I’m aware that the offset camera is still by-and-large the standard, but as someone that has gotten used to the FSN North high center field camera with the dead-on home plate view, it’s really irritating not being able to tell how good the umpire’s ball-strike calls are by sight. It wouldn’t be necessary at all if they were using that camera in the first place.

  3. Daniel said...

    These things have always bothered me.  I get enough angst during playoff games from being mad at umpires who blow calls.  I don’t need to get mad at a machine that supports the umpire’s bad call.

  4. Hojo said...

    I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s the greatest thing since sliced bread but I would hardly call it annoying either. My memory isn’t good when it comes to pitch sequences so for me it is nice to have a history readily available. It didn’t make me mad at the umps once the game got going though. It told me, for instance, in tonight’s Red Sox-Angels game, that Joe West wasn’t giving pitchers the outside corner. So once I got used to that not being called, I was fine with it. If you think about it, instant replay that we see right after a close play could get someone equally, if not more, upset with an umpire and we’ve had that for years.

  5. Wooden U. Lykteneau said...

    Craig – I think the PitchTrax was designed specifically for how I watched the Red Sox-A’s game: on my DVR this a.m. on fast-forward (basically double speed). Now you can make your argument that it’s distracting, but I think FackYouk’s first commenter was dead-on:

    For me, new graphics in televised sports are like new facebook layouts. Initially, they’re greeted with unanymous[sic] revulsion, but slowly we become accustomed to them and soon cannot fully enjoy the experience without them.

    My counterargument to the “distraction”—ESPN, Bloomberg, Fox, CNN, Headline News, HSN, CNBC, 25or6to4, etc. have all trained us to visually tune in and out of what we want to see.

  6. Mark said...

    They’re useless, neither pleasing or irritating to me. The irritating thing was how TBS’s overscanned broadcast cut the thing in half off the side of the screen.

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