Only a handful of early adopters got to see it, but Major League Baseball broadcast some experimental 3DTV early this month around the All-Star Game in Anaheim, California. Earlier in the week, Fox Sports shot two games in 3D from Seattle as the Mariners took on the Yankees. These were sponsored by Panasonic and DirecTV, and were broadcast by DirecTV, Verizon, and major cable operators.
The big game was the All-Star Game, however, which Fox Sports shot using 13 3D cameras, including some Panasonic camcorders. The stereoscopic images apparently enhanced the viewing experience for many viewers, giving a better sense of the distance from pitcher to batter, and making it easier to judge the ball’s position and movement.
While no additional games are scheduled to be televised in 3D for this season at this point, the experiments were deemed a success. The challenge will be to find a way to fund the significantly-greater expense of 3D coverage, especially if it has to be provided in parallel with the existing 2D high definition production. Fortunately, the installed base of 3DTVs won’t represent a significant portion of the viewing public in the U.S. for a couple of years, so the MLB and the networks still have time to work it out.