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MLB 2017 Season


Spring Rubber

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This doesn't look to be a season of huge graphics changes, unless Fox Sports surprises us and rolls out something at the last minute, but in the mean time, CSN introduced a neat little feature in the batter walk-up lower thirds to indicate that batter's position in the batting order. As you can see, it's displayed just to the right of the player's name. Maybe this will catch on amongst the other networks.

 

V9D6Zs6l.jpg

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I think there's an outside chance we see some kind of refresh from ESPN. No indications that they will, but they've been getting creative on other packages, so another sport straying from the SportsCenter motif isn't impossible. As for Fox, I'll believe it when I see it.

 

At my local level, both OTA stations' graphics are due for a refresh or even an overhaul. WGN's current package goes back 5 or 6 years, and WLS has used a modified version of ESPN's old silver look for the first 2 years of their 5-year Cubs deal.

 

We shall see.

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I think WLS could do anything different, and it would look better than what they're currently using. They'll make me eat those words; you watch.

I mean, it's generically inoffensive (could definitely debate the pros and cons of 7 and 9), but that scoreboard is a total mess. Fixing that would be a huge improvement.

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The CSN's also got new opens. They look pretty nice.

 

As for Fox: they tend to roll out new stuff ( refreshes or new gfx pack) towards the very end of Spring training. So roughly around 3/30-4/1. If there's nothing new, then that's what they're sticking with for this upcoming season. FWIW, I am seeing a bit more of a flat look in the promos. Not sure if that's any indication, but at least on that side, they seem to be trying for that.

 

And Root Sports: yuck. They really bastardized that gfx package. The only good thing about it is the opens and music. Definitely over over overdue for a new package. Maybe next year...

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What I think is ridiculous is that Root Sports kept the original graphics style on their hockey score bug (and maybe their basketball one, too? Can't remember). It looks so much better.

 

Their baseball score bug doesn't match anything else in the graphics package.

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A few screengrabs from the new CSN opens:

 

CSN California/Oakland A's

IMG_0862_zpsye52dknz.png

 

CSN Bay Area/ San Francisco Giants

IMG_0863_zpsli17bjlb.png

 

NBC Bay Area/San Francisco Giants

IMG_0861_zpsfzcokuci.png

 

CSN Philadelphia- Phillies

IMG_0860_zps1qjozycg.png

 

And for comparison: 2016 open

IMG_0777_zpsinu1phnr.png

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What I think is ridiculous is that Root Sports kept the original graphics style on their hockey score bug (and maybe their basketball one, too? Can't remember). It looks so much better.

 

Their baseball score bug doesn't match anything else in the graphics package.

Agreed. The updated box has a flat look, compared to the rest of the package. All they had to do was adjust the old scorebar to fit the pitch count and maybe change the font to make it more readable.

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Agreed. The updated box has a flat look, compared to the rest of the package. All they had to do was adjust the old scorebar to fit the pitch count and maybe change the font to make it more readable.

 

If the AT&T/Turner deal goes through, I'd just make like what CSN did after Comcast bought NBC, and give them TBS's baseball graphics. There's precedence for regional/national uniformity.

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Barring a miracle, it seems like the FSN's will go with the same exact graphics. I did notice they're starting to use that lighter blue L3 they've been using for FS1's pre/postgame and studio shows. This is pretty weird since Fox has tweaked their graphics every couple of years, with possibly the exception being this year. Just speculating, but I wouldn't be surprised if they got a completely new graphics package next year. Which would explain the status quo this year.

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I'm gonna guess we'll see a new package for the upcoming NFL season, which will be rolled out to all of the other sports when they start their next new seasons, which is basically the norm for Fox Sports. 2014 was the exception when they decided to debut the new graphics with the NASCAR season, which was certainly unexpected.

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My goodness. MASN continues to be cheap bastards using the same ugly-ass graphics package from the last 6-7 years.

 

Every team has access to MLB StatCast platform to use in game, and its customizable enough that the RSN's can get the data and insert it into their own graphics or use MLB's graphics. Well, MASN is too cheap or lazy (or maybe both) that they've decided to use MLB's statcast graphics, thus clashing with the MASN graphics.

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IMG_0559.thumb.JPG.d7b6635c6b36b023356cfe505358fdbd.JPG MLB Network updated their scoreboard and graphics package for their Showcase broadcasts. Gone are the shorthand initials for teams (e.g. "CHC" and "STL"), it is just both teams' cap insignias. Lower thirds are the same.
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Introducing CSN (or NBC Sports) Pitchcast. Feels like it's straight out of the MLB The Show video game with the color-coded pitch identification.

 

NReYRZel.jpg

Hasn't CSN Chicago done that for at least 5 or 6 years now?

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Hasn't CSN Chicago done that for at least 5 or 6 years now?

The difference now is that the real-time type of pitch and ball/strike info is shown, not just placement and speed.

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Hmmm. I wonder if it's some kind of proprietary software from MLB that the RSN's have access to? Because FOX Sports San Diego started using the update FOXTRAX and it not only lists the speed/location, but as 24994J mentioned, the pitch type. The foxtrax (at least for FSN) has been tweaked to be a bit more transparent. I'll try to have some caps tomorrow.

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Here's a look at the updated FOXTrax:

IMG_0868_zpsjxv8kxn7.png

 

Last year's FOXTrax:

989a842b-9a52-4436-8714-71f6d3a52d73_zpsx9rdb4kk.jpg

 

_____________________________________________________________________________

 

And going back to earlier posts RE: NBC Sports Bay Area. A few screenshots from the opens:

IMG_0865_zps2oqzi8gq.png

IMG_0866_zpsr8jcu5xm.png

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Okay, upgraded pitch trackers must be new across the board, cause Sportsnet (Blue Jays) also has one.

 

[MEDIA=twitter]849763058012614656[/MEDIA]

 

I also stand corrected; last season it looked like this, but it didn't have those extra details.

 

[MEDIA=twitter]778748483452841985[/MEDIA]

 

But on the opener it looked like this. People did mention that it disappeared part way through the game, so maybe it didn't load their skin so it went to whatever fallback this is (that looks eerily more like Sportsnet LA than Sportsnet in Canada)

 

[MEDIA=twitter]848978995727224832[/MEDIA]

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The two locals in Chicago that air games have used the pitch trackers pretty sparingly in previous years, so part of me is curious if they'll get any kind of upgrades (though I guess they would). It may take awhile to find out, though, as those two stations have yet to air any games, and weather cancellations have been unrelenting.

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Oh yeah, YES Network has finally come back to Comcast systems, much to the relief of Yankee fans (such as me and my dad) and, to a lesser extent, fans of the Nets and NYC FC (I'm pretty sure the latter has only 1,000 fans- it's pretty obscure); they got in a dispute over fees back in 2015, and as a result they were taken off Comcast for all of last season.

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I can't remember which team telecast I heard this, but it was mentioned that MLB was changing the location of where the speed gun measured the velocity of the pitch. Something like that. I really can't remember the fine details, but they did say that the change could lead to higher MPH being registered on pitches. I'm not sure if this new pitch speed thing is part of the pitch tracker updates we've seen the RSN's introduce.

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