MLB.TV is set and ready for Classic season

Top streaming sports product available for 2017 season

MLB.TV is set and ready for Classic season

Pitchers and catchers have begun workouts in Arizona and Florida, and another important annual rite of spring is here right now: MLB.TV.

The longest-running and most successful live streaming sports product is available for the 2017 Major League Baseball season beginning today with nearly two dozen interactive features for its millions of subscribers to access and interact with live MLB games on any of the more than 400 supported devices. As an added bonus, MLB.TV subscribers in the U.S. can watch all games live in the World Baseball Classic, the fourth edition of the tournament featuring the planet's best players representing 16 countries and territories. A minimum of 39 games will be played at six venues across four nations, beginning with Israel against Korea on March 6 and ending with the finals at Dodger Stadium, which will run March 20-22.

"I always use MLB.TV to replay my starts and/or evaluate how I will approach a particular team," said Cardinals right-hander Carlos Martinez, who is on the Dominican Republic's provisional roster for the 2017 Classic. "The picture quality and functions of the app are incredible. It's also a great way for my family and friends back home in Dominican Republic to watch my games live."

All MLB.TV subscribers will have access to watch nearly 300 live Spring Training games from Florida and Arizona. The Spring Training game broadcasts via MLB.TV are scheduled to begin on Feb. 24.

Those will be the first live streams of Major League games since the Cubs beat the Indians in the 10th inning of the last World Series. Authenticated MLB.TV subscribers were able to stream that FOX telecast live, and that will be the case again with the 2017 World Series, as well as the 88th All-Star Game presented by MasterCard in Miami. Access will be available via MLB.TV through FOX's participating video providers across any supported MLB.TV platforms, including smartphones and tablets via At Bat.

"It just allows my family to watch the games, whether they're at work or traveling," said Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich. "My mom works late so she's not always home for the games. My brother is in the Marine Corps, and he's all over the place. It just expands the game of baseball. It allows more people to view it. I think that was their ultimate goal, and they're succeeding."

That success has led into this 15th-anniversary season of tech innovations and breakthrough features for watching live games, and the MLB.TV Premium yearly subscription is available for $112.99 as the best offering.

The new array of features, debuting for regular-season games, includes a "team view" in which fans can designate a favorite team and enjoy a custom team-centric experience on supported platforms. Redesigned apps will launch on connected platforms Android TV, FireTV, Xbox and Roku. The HD media player, a responsive, in-page layout experience, will introduce additional playback controls, milestone markers and support for Chromecast and Chromebook.

"Alexa, open MLB" will be a familiar verbal command as MLB.TV Premium subscribers will have access to listen to live games without blackout restrictions using the new MLB skill on the Amazon Echo platform.

All-access features also include home and away feeds, allowing you to watch either TV broadcast feed live, including Spanish-language audio overlay on supported devices. Portability remains a hallmark, because with a single subscription, you can watch live out-of-market games on all supported connected devices, smartphones and tablets.

MLB.TV Premium subscribers will have free access to all premium features in MLB.com At Bat (a $19.99 value), including home and away radio broadcasts, exclusive highlights and more. At Bat will be available for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, supported Android smartphones and tablets and Amazon Kindle Fire.

Revolutionary 60 frames-per-second live streaming video will be available to MLB.TV Premium subscribers. This HD technology also will be available in 2017 on supported iPhones, iPads and Apple TVs as well as Chromecast, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Roku, Xbox One and Xbox 360.

Authenticated subscribers again will have the opportunity to utilize "Follow Your Team" to watch a single selected out-of-market team's live local telecasts. The add-on feature (a $10 value) also includes access to the selected out-of-market team's games played against any team within the designated home TV territory where the subscriber resides, provided that the subscriber is also a pay TV subscriber of the regional sports network that carries the in-market club that the selected out-of-market club is playing.

"MLB.TV is essential for a baseball junkie like me," Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino said. "It's so easy to catch up on the other games around the league from my phone while we are on the go. I only wish I could have had this when I was growing up."

The MLB.TV Single Team yearly subscription is also available, at $87.49. If you choose this package only, you will have access to watch a single selected team's out-of-market regular-season games live, accessible via the Internet through the MLB.TV HD media player on the web, supported connected devices and the At Bat free experience.

When Patriots running back James White pushed the football over the goal line to complete one of the greatest comebacks in pro sports history earlier this month, it was a symbolic passing of a baton to the national pastime. That is how players see it, and MLB.TV is part of the act.

"As soon as the Super Bowl ends, it kind of gets real," Yelich said. "Spring Training will be coming up fast. I've actually just landed in Miami now. The day after the Super Bowl, I am back in Florida. That's always kind of been my marker, the end of the Super Bowl. I'm excited to get going."

New D-backs catcher Chris Iannetta said the transfer of attention from football to baseball represents a major milestone on his annual calendar.

"When the Super Bowl is over, it means that my offseason training is coming to an end and the game that I love to play begins in two weeks," Iannetta said. "It means that opportunity and dreams are at an all-time high. The excitement of being on a championship club is building by the moment. ... Being from the Northeast, the allure of green grass and palm trees bring the chance for competition and greatness. It means it's time to play ball."

Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com and a baseball writer since 1990. MLB.com reporters Joe Frisaro and Thomas Harding contributed to this story. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.