Roku Brings Out-of-Market MLB to Your TV
Admittedly, this one won't appeal to everyone. But I'm so stoked on it, so I had to post it. Other out-of-market fans should appreciate it as much as I do.
As a diehard baseball and basketball fan that moved far away from my home teams' market, I'm torn every season between spending hundreds of dollars on packages like MLB Extra Innings to get out-of-market games or missing the entire season and being limited to reading about the games the next day. While I usually choose the former, it gets expensive and there are still a lot of games that are missed thanks to poorly-construed broadcast rules that blackout many a game.
When it comes to the MLB, another option floating around is MLB.TV. Right now, this option only costs $30 to $35 for the rest of the season and it provides every game, making it a much more cost-effective and comprehensive solution. There are still blackout restrictions, but MLB.TV archives games after they've been played, and the archives aren't subject to blackouts so you can still watch local and national games (just don't tune in to SportsCenter beforehand). Unfortunately, I'm not a big fan of watching games while hunched over my 14" laptop and I don't think many other people are either. We'd prefer to sit in the comfort of the living room, with a big flat screen and surround sound system--that's really the way any game is meant to be watched.
The Roku Box, which provides streaming of content like Netflix and Amazon movies, provides an excellent solution. It recently announced that it will offer MLB.TV content streamed to your television. Sign up for MLB.TV premium ($35 for the remainder of the season), purchase a $100 Roku box and get the baseball action you want without the heavy price tag (significantly less than what I paid for MLB Extra Innings for the season, and next year, the box will be free). The combination allows you to keep up with your out-of-market games and to watch local and nationally-televised games 90 minutes after they end--certainly better than never getting to watch them because of a full black out. Enjoy the lower price of MLB.TV without needing to watch on your PC.
The box even functions like a DVR allowing you to pause, rewind, fast forward and play content on your own schedule. The umps will likely miss a close call--and you can be sure they did by giving it a second look.