April 18, 2008

Missing a Few A's Games this Year, and Turning to MLB.TV

For the last two baseball seasons, my wife and I had signed up to approximately 40 games a year. We didn't make all of them, but we made a good amount. We spent a lot of Friday evenings and Saturday mornings going up and down I-880 in the East Bay, headed to Oakland. But when news of the twins hit, we knew we had to adjust, taking the total package down to what we thought would be a more manageable 20 games a year. I even planned ahead by leaving a big gap in our ticket schedule around when the kids are expected to show up.

Even this looks like it may have been optimistic. Now that my wife and I have passed the 26-weeks mark, her fatigue level is very real. The idea of going to games on back to back days is unreasonable now - something along the lines of approved marital torture, with every stair step or stand up/sit down routine. So tonight, we're eating the price of our tickets, and staying home.

But to fill the baseball void, we're going online. I've been chairing the Thursday activity on Athletics Nation (See from yesterday's activity: How Do You Help Convert the Casual Fan? and One Can Be The Loneliest Number). Also, during last week's trip to Florida, I invested in MLB.com's video package, letting me watch any major league game in fairly good quality live, so long as the contest is not blacked out.

A scene from tonight's games (and the available schedule)

Last night, part of why I was up so late, blogging at almost 2 a.m., was due a marathon 22-inning game between the Colorado Rockies and the San Diego Padres. Hearing the game had gone to the 18th, I logged on to MLB.TV and saw the game unfold, inning after inning, stretching deep into the night.

The quality of MLB.TV is remarkably better than the jittery, buffering, versions I remember from previous years. I can stream any game on one side of my monitor, and keep working on the other side, without parallel apps slowing down. With family looking like it just might get in the way of some of our in-person sports, MLB.TV is a great alternative. Soon, hopefully, I can start talking about taking our kids to their first ballgames.