Baseball was originally created in 1839 in New York as a version of an English game called Rounders. Only six years later, the New York Knickerbocker Baseball Club was founded by a group of men and in 1846, the first game was played against a cricket team which was the beginning of the sport we know today.
But science has always played its part in the evolution of the game. In 1859, a sportswriter introduced the box score and only 30 years ago video started being used as a tool to improve the batters’ swing.
Here are some of the major advancements that have changed the game for players and fans.
Fans are now able to get close up and personal with the help of virtual reality technology. Step up to the plate and have a swing at the ball to the sound of a sellout crowd or even go into the dugout with all your favorite players. These kinds of technologies are changing the way fans experience the game.
Baseball Simulation Games
Putting fans in the driving seat, the baseball manager game allows fans to create their own baseball team from any player throughout history. All aspects of the game are taken into consideration, providing a realistic experience. Not only this, but major league teams are also turning to simulation games as a critical tool in determining gameplay and driving teams forward using data software.
The K-Vest is one of the most advanced tools to emerge for improving a player’s swing. Sensors are placed on a batter’s upper torso, pelvis and lead arm and hand and data gathered is then turned into a 3D rendering of the swing. This is currently being used by 21 MLB teams as well as academies.
This is a tracker that is attached to the bat and gives the batter data on their angles, planes and velocity to produce a 3D model of a player’s swing. It is able to estimate flight, distance and the path of a ball, and while it is currently being used by around 15 MLB teams, it’s affordable price tag means that it is also accessible for children wanting to improve their game.
This amazing piece of technology captures every movement of the pitcher and batter to provide 3D rotational and positional data for every joint in the athlete’s bodies. The Kinatrax can help identify shifts in mechanics that might hamper performance or lead to injury. Four major league teams are currently using this technology, including the Red Sox.
Rapsodo uses a camera mounted on a six-foot-high tripod positioned six feet behind the back of the plate. It uses a camera to generate data on ball speed, velocity and spin, launch angle and projected hit outcome. All teams and many academies use the images to track the exact spin axis of the pitch as its coming into the plate. It has even been predicted that this piece of equipment will soon be used by scouts scoring the country for talent.