As Major League Baseball finally goes up to bat on Thursday, coaches will be using iPads to get information about their own players, and ones from opposing teams.
Apple tablets even have a role in providing artificial crowd noise, necessary as the COVID-19 pandemic forces teams to play in empty stadiums during the shortened 2020 season.
Coaches access an MLB Dugout app on iPads
In 2016, Apple signed a multi-year deal with MLB that provided iPad Pros to coaching staff. That deal was expanded this year to give each team 15 iPads, according to CNBC.
Part of the goal is to prevent players and coaches from collecting around video stations that once were in clubhouses. More separation means there’s less chance they’ll spread COVID-19.
Plus, thanks to the MLB Dugout app, the iPads will provide baseball player performance data, weigh up possible pitcher-hitter matchups, analyze where a player is likely to hit the ball, and even look up videos from previous games.
Teams will also have access to MLB’s statistics-tracking system, Statcast.
Bring on the [fake] noise!
Obviously, thousands of fans can’t crowd into a baseball stadium in the middle of a pandemic. Rather than games being played in an eerie silence, fake crowd noise will be generated.
Sony is taking on that job. It’s providing crowd sounds from its game MLB The Show. These will be distributed to teams via an iPad. A sound technician in each park will take care of playing noises to simulate thousands of fans reacting to the baseball game.