ESPN Watch: Position Upgrade

The first thing I noticed while watching Opening Day on ESPN was the new graphics and transitions for baseball. They've dumped the neon red and blue scheme that matched the SportsCenter set and the new look incorporates an almost cubist simplification of elements of the field and card houses from vintage baseball cards. They've also dropped the segements promoting bands that have some afinity for (but no understanding of) baseball. The crew has also done a wonderful job of showing relevant archived clips throughout the game.

I recently read The Last Nine Innings, which at points talked about using new camera angles and perspectives to enhance enjoyment of the game while at the same time giving a clearer perspective of what's really happeneing. With all due respect, I don't really care if I see Orlando Cabrera repositioning himself for a weak groundout when Bartolo Colon throws a slider down and away. That in no way enhances my baseball experience. But if I understand the way that the game of today connects to the mythic moments I was too young to have seen, I feel connected with them, and that's why we really watch baseball; to feel a connection to a noble sport.

I'm going to do something you readers have rarely seen, laud ESPN. Congratulations for refining a good broadcast into a great one. With changes like this, and K Zone in years previous, you've set a new standard that all baseball broadcasts will be measured by.

No comments :