SBD/Issue 59/Sports Media

MLBAM, Bloomberg Partner To Offer Analytical Products To Teams

MLBAM, Bloomberg Strike Deal To Create
And Sell Advanced Statistical Products
MLBAM and Bloomberg have reached a multi-year deal to "create and sell an advanced set of statistical and analytic products for" MLB teams and the general public, according to Eric Fisher of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. Bloomberg will "take MLBAM's real-time statistical feed from every game, as well as location-based data already being developed in partnership with Sportvision, and apply an almost limitless amount of analytical tools." For example, a team using the system could "very quickly isolate the angle of a pitcher's arm on every pitch that resulted in an extra base hit against a given opponent in a chosen game situation." Bloomberg and MLB will "brief teams on the effort and show the product this week" at MLB's Winter Meetings in Indianapolis. Teams will be "given a six-month free trial to test the product, with Bloomberg beginning sales on the system after that." Use of the system "will be voluntary" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 12/7 issue). Baseball Info Solutions Owner John Dewan, whose company "sells fielding software to about half" of the MLB teams, noted if Bloomberg and MLBAM "convince all 30 teams to pay $50,000 each, that's $1.5[M]." Dewan: "Is that big enough? It's nice for a small company. For a big company? I don't think they'll get the return they want." But Bloomberg President Daniel Doctoroff "disagreed." Doctoroff: "Not everything we do has to be huge." MLBAM President & CEO Bob Bowman said that despite Bloomberg's "financial-world capabilities, it still had to prove itself to teams and fans." Bowman: "Can they transfer their expertise to baseball? Time will tell." Mets COO Jeff Wilpon said that the "value in the software will be in evaluating free agents." Wilpon: "If you take X player on another team who's around a great cast of players, we want to look at him in our ballpark with different players around him to see how he will fit in" (N.Y. TIMES, 12/6).

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