|Type of site||Baseball|
|Owner||Major League Baseball|
|Created by||Major League Baseball|
MLB.com is the official site of Major League Baseball and is overseen by Major League Baseball Advanced Media, L.P. (a subsidiary of MLB). MLB.com is a source of baseball-related information, including baseball news, statistics, and sports columns. MLB.com is also a commercial site, providing online streaming video and streaming audio broadcasts of all Major League Baseball games to paying subscribers, as well as "gameday", a near-live streaming box score of baseball games for free. In addition, MLB.com sells official baseball merchandise, allows users to buy tickets to baseball games, runs fantasy baseball leagues (both free and paid), and runs auctions of baseball memorabilia.
MLB.com also contains the full, unabridged, official rules of the game.
MLB.tv is an American subscription based audio and video service which through two different service tiers allows users to hear and watch HD quality Major League Baseball games live via a high-speed Internet connection. Both MLB.tv Basic and MLB.tv Premium subscribers receive In-Game highlights and stats, Live game DVR control, Mosaic view, Full Game Archives, Audio overlay (Away radio audio overlay is available to MLB.tv Premium subscribers only), Pitch by Pitch widget, Clickable linescores and Fantasy player tracker. MLB.tv basic subscribers can only view and hear the service using their desktop or laptop computer whereas MLB.tv Premium subscribers can in addition to their computer have access to audio and video using their mobile device such as Android or iOS devices through a free subscription to the At-Bat mobile app1 and through certain connected devices including smart televisions, Blu-ray players, TiVo DVRs, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. To use the Xbox 360 app requires a subscription to Xbox Live Gold.2
Starting with the 2012 season MLB.tv Premium has begun a service called Audio Overlay which allows the user to replace the video's home or away audio with the audio feed from the home or away radio feed (Away team audio overlay is only available to MLB.TV Premium subscribers) or Park which removes all audio commentary and lets the viewer hear the ball park's natural sounds.3 As with MLB's Extra Innings cable and satellite television service normal blackout restrictions will apply where applicable, see below.
MLB.tv is also available as a channel on Roku, offering HD quality and a choice of audio feeds, but lacking some of the other advanced features.
The current costs of subscription depend on the quality the user will want to view, and the timing of payment:
|MLB.tv Premium (800K or 1.2MB)||MLB.tv (400K)||Gameday Audio|
|Monthly||$24.99||$19.99||Not available as a monthly subscription|
All subscriptions of MLB.tv Premium include Gameday Audio.
Mosaic was a downloadable program which provided features not available when streaming through a web browser. It was only available to subscribers of MLB.tv Premium. Live games were shown, and on-demand games available for a period of two days previous to the current date. Major League Baseball has not used MLB.tv Mosaic since the 2008 season.
Mosaic allowed you to show multiple games at once, and provided the following viewing modes:
- 6 games tiled across the screen.
- 4 games tiled across the screen.
- One main game, with 2 games tiled on the right hand side.
- One main game, with 3 games tiled on the right hand side.
- One main game (which can be made full-screen)
When set on one main game, team information was shown to the right hand side of the game, including team line-ups, the boxscore, and team statistics. Users could also view their "player tracker", which would alert the user when a player in their chosen player list was active in a game.
Beginning with the 2009 season, Mosaic functionality was largely incorporated into the main viewing mode. Multiple-game viewing has been retained, with a choice of one, two side to side, two (one in the main window and one in a secondary 'picture in picture' mode), and four-game mode available.
MLB.com has been providing streaming video since the 2002 season,4 with only audio available before that. However, in the United States, Canada, South Korea, Guam and the US Virgin Islands, blackout restrictions apply. Games are blacked out to all users within the theoretical home television territory assigned to each team, irrespective of whether local television stations carry local games of those teams.5 Contractual stipulations with Fox and ESPN respectively mean that regular season Saturday games scheduled before 1900 EST (beginning 20 May 2006) and Sunday games scheduled after 17:00 EST are blacked out throughout the United States. During the post-season, all games are blacked out in the United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Guam and the US Virgin Islands. In all other countries and territories, no exclusivity rights have been granted and MLB.com is able to broadcast all games.
Any game that is blacked out (for any reason) is made available as an archived game approximately 90 minutes after the conclusion of each game.
MLB.com can check a viewer's origin by using IP address information, but some users have reported inaccuracy of the ISP-based targeting used, thus leaving many fans unable to watch games on MLB.com.6
MLB Gameday Audio does not have blackout restrictions.7
MLB.com At Bat is a mobile application available for different platforms including iOS (a universal app which works on iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad), Android, BlackBerry, and HP TouchPad/webOS. The iOS application features, "live audio, in-game video highlights, pitch-by-pitch live data and more." (Users may view live games if they log in with MLB.tv subscriptions.) The BlackBerry and Android application features "real-time scores, live audio, in-game highlights and more." The application is free (although it requires a subscription to MLB.TV to unlock its full functionality) and is available on the App Store, Google Play, and BlackBerry App World stores.8 MLB distributes a new application for each season; the 2012 version was the first to be available free of charge.
A social networking app, MLB.com At The Ballpark, is also available. The free app allows fans to view ballpark maps, post to assorted social networking sites (via 'checking in' when they attend games), and in some ballparks, order concessions directly from their mobile devices.
MLB.com Fantasy has many games and simulations, including Beat the Streak and MLB 2012 Fantasy Baseball. Beat the Streak is a game where a player is picked for each day, and if that player gets at least one hit, one's streak continues. The goal being to Beat the all-time record of Joe DiMaggio's 56 games. MLB 2012 Fantasy Baseball is where one can make up to five teams and draft players. The real-life performance of a player directly determines the amount of points that player earns in the fantasy game.
Major League Baseball's previous website was at www.MajorLeagueBaseball.com. The MLB.com domain name was originally registered in 1994 by Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP, a Philadelphia-based law firm.9 In September 2000, Morgan Lewis & Bokius agreed to transfer the domain name to Major League Baseball.10
According to the Better Business Bureau: "Consumers previously reported to the BBB their subscriptions were automatically renewed with MLB Advanced Media even though they had cancelled their plans within the specified cancellation period. MLB Advanced Media has taken steps to address these concerns by adding more prominent disclosures and an opt-out feature."11
In 2009, opening week games were not available as archives, and users reported limited High Definition service available.12
- MLB.tv Premium website
- Xbox Live subscription options webpage.
- MLB.tv Audio Overlay service
- "Baseball officials plan live video streaming" on c|net news
- "A black(out) eye for baseball" by Jeff Passan, Yahoo! sports.
- Seltzer, Larry (June 28, 2004). "Major League Baseball Knows Where You Live!". eweek.com. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
- MLB.tv subscription information
- "MLB.com Mobile Software Website"
- Davies, Ross E. (Fall 2010). "The Law Firm and the League: Morgan, Lewis and Bockius LLP, Major League Baseball, and MLB.com". Baseball Research Journal (Society for American Baseball Research). Retrieved September 1, 2012.
- Mullaney, Timothy J. (November 20, 2000). "Switch Hit for a Domain Name". BusinessWeek. Retrieved September 1, 2012.
- "BBB Business Review Reliability Report for MLB Advanced Media".
- Tartakoff, Joseph (2009-04-09). "Washington Post Article on MLB.TV, April 9, 2009". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-05-12.
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