Major League Baseball’s pitch clock has been put into effect this spring training and so far it’s having a pretty interesting impact on the game. It’s also having an impact on the broadcasters covering those games. And just like pitchers and batters, those networks seem to be adjusting on the fly when it comes to how to present the clock to their audiences.
It doesn’t seem as though many of the networks have figured out to build the pitch clock into their score bug and graphics packages, so we’re seeing a few old-school picture-in-picture presentations of the clock as it winds down.
Many of the networks haven’t incorporated the pitch clock into the graphics or needed to add any visual representation in part because the ballpark itself has a giant click in plain view.
Meanwhile, Bally Sports Midwest stuck the pitch clock in the bottom right corner.
NBC Sports Philadelphia went the other direction and stuck it in the bottom left corner.
Other networks were able to figure out how to insert the live clock video into their graphics. That’s the case for MLB Network, which dropped the clock video into their score bug, which is a little hard to make out.
Marquee Network is one of the few to actually figure out to work the countdown into their graphics package without the need for video of the live clock.
The good news for viewers is that, per ESPN MLB insider Jeff Passan, Major League ballparks will position the pitch clock out of view from the centerfield camera, so “TV viewers will not see the physical clock during pitches.” However, that makes it all the more important that MLB broadcasters will need to figure out how to best incorporate the countdown into their graphics packages in a way that minimizes the size without making it impossible to see.
[Bally Sports Midwest, MLB Network, Marquee Network, NBC Sports Philadelphia]