Talking tech with ESPN's MLB insider Jeff Passan

Major League Baseball insider Jeff Passan answers questions about baseball tech and the gear he uses to break the latest news from around the game.

Tech & Science, Mlb

12/4/2021 6:33:00 PM

Major League Baseball insider Jeff Passan answers questions about baseball tech and the gear he uses to break the latest news from around the game.

Major League Baseball insider Jeff Passan answers questions about baseball tech and the gear he uses to break the latest news from around the game.

insider and ESPN reporter Jeff Passan. From breaking trade deals to commenting on social issues around ball clubs, Passan has become an invaluable source for anyone craving baseball news and information all year long.Passan is constantly visible, both on TV and social media, so I checked in with him to ask about the gear and gadgets that have helped him work through the COVID-19 pandemic, and the social media tools and the apps he finds valuable. Technology permeates every industry, so I also asked him about what aspect of tech he sees being a key piece of Major League Baseball moving forward.

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MLB insider and ESPN reporter Jeff Passan. From breaking trade deals to commenting on social issues around ball clubs, Passan has become an invaluable source for anyone craving baseball news and information all year long. Passan is constantly visible, both on TV and social media, so I checked in with him to ask about the gear and gadgets that have helped him work through the COVID-19 pandemic, and the social media tools and the apps he finds valuable. Technology permeates every industry, so I also asked him about what aspect of tech he sees being a key piece of Major League Baseball moving forward. How do you do remote TV or video spots? What are some devices used? When I first learned I wouldn't have a camera in my house but instead an iPad, I was confused. I didn't realize that the TVU [Anywhere] app and the iPad's front-facing camera could produce a broadcast-quality picture. To dial in for audio, I use a flip phone, which is always fun, and a custom-molded earpiece, which is an absolute must because my ears are terrible and the standard IFB [interruptible foldback] ear cones don't fit. I've got lighting in the ceiling, but whenever I have to take a kit on the road, I try to bring a ring light, because the awfulness of hotel-room lighting can never be underestimated. What advancements in technology around Major League Baseball interest you the most at the moment? While I'm a robot ump advocate and think we're getting closer and closer to the day they arrive in Major League Baseball, the present tech that excites me the most is tailored to hitters. For years, pitchers have had a leg up in the technology race with high-speed cameras and radar systems that allow them not only to objectively judge their pitchers but encourage them to tinker with them at such a minuscule level that they're designing new, optimized pitches. The same principle is now being used in reverse. Multiple companies have designed pitching machines that input the data of major league pitches and replicate them. Want to see a 102-mile per hour fastball from Jacob deGrom? The machines oblige with a ball flung from his release point—and with the same movement. Hitters don't know if the machines can even out the advantage pitchers currently have, but they're excited to find out. What apps or services help you use social media for work? I use