"The extra Wild Card this year has really kept an awful lot of teams in contention," White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said Thursday at Princeton, where he led a club contingent that accepted the Steve Patterson Award for Excellence in Sports Philanthropy. "As we sit here today, (18) teams are within (4 1/2) games of playing in the postseason. So there's excitement in a lot of cities around baseball that wouldn't have been that excited if we didn't have the second Wild Card.
"Baseball is truly America's national pastime. There is a lot of excitement in places where there hasn't been excitement for a while. Baltimore, for example, is coming back and drawing tremendous crowds where no one expected them to be as good as they are. The Pirates are seeking to break their multiyear below-.500 losing streak and bringing a lot of excitement to Pittsburgh. All over baseball, there's a lot of excitement. We are the greatest game that there is."
It is a game that leads the way in technology, having just celebrated the 10-year birthday of its first live video stream of a Major League game. MLB.TV currently serves one million live video streams per day.
MLB.TV has delivered 1.5 billion live video streams to 3.7 million total subscribers. There have been more than 25,000 live games streamed and more than 55.7 million mobile live video streams.
MLB.com At Bat 12, the top-selling sports app of all-time in the Apple App Store, will be included with your MLB.TV Premium subscription at no additional cost. Download the app and then your MLB.TV subscription will be authenticated, so you can enjoy complete mobile portability to iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch and most Android phones and tablets.
"It's been fun to watch, because of the progression of technology," Mets ace R.A. Dickey said. "One, because it brings the gift of baseball into so many more lives. That's what's first and foremost -- it's awesome. Secondly, it gives my mom [Leslie Wheeler] a chance to watch every time I pitch, which probably should be first."
Xbox 360 has been a major addition to the growing list of connected and mobile devices that support MLB.TV in 2012. Xbox LIVE Gold Membership is $59.99 for 12 months and is required for streaming live MLB.TV games over that platform. That experience brings unique features like a split-screen mode that lets you watch two games at once, and voice control on Xbox 360 that lets you pause, rewind or fast forward with the sound of your voice.
You can see what games are on the ledger every day at the MLB.com Mediacenter, and MLB.TV Premium lets you choose between home or away broadcasts for any of them. You can even select "Park" for just the ambient stadium sound that fans hear there at the yard. DVR Controls allow you to pause and rewind live games.
Scoreboard-watching is especially easy because MLB.TV lets you toggle back and forth from game to game, and Multi-game View lets you watch two games at once in Picture in Picture mode or split screen. With Quad View, you can watch up to four games or highlights at once, following the pennant races in style.
"I use MLB.TV on my desktop computer and I've been using it since the beginning of this season and also used it for a few months last season," Rays fan Michelle Spring said. "Whenever I use MLB.TV, basic or Premium, I love the fact that I can watch multiple games at once. I first got MLB.TV to watch certain out-of-market games, but now I use it to watch other out-of-market games in general."