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Apple teams up with MLB to put iPad Pros in the dugout

by Jacob Kleinman | March 30, 2016March 30, 2016 10:40 am PST

Starting this year you may see a new addition to your favorite baseball team, a 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Apple and Major League Baseball (MLB) have inked a deal to get the plus-sized tablet into every dugout for the 2016 season, The Wall Street Journal said Wednesday.

The deal will make it a lot easier for coaches and players to access important data, including performance stats from multiple seasons and “spray charts” that show where a player is most likely to hit the ball. They’ll also be able to pull up video clips and weigh matchups between various players.

“We’re not just replacing binders with tablets, we’re actually helping them do things that weren’t possible before,” Apple’s marketing chief Phil Schiller told WSJ. 

Each iPad Pro will be equipped with a durable case that shows the team’s logo. It also includes a special MLB Dugout app designed with help from Apple. At launch, all the data will be pre-loaded on each tablet before the game starts but, in the future, they may be able to access new information in real time.

Microsoft previously struck a similar deal with the NFL that put Surface tablets on the sidelines of every football game with mixed results. The NFL deal requires each team to use and display the tablets – which are often simply called iPads – but Apple’s agreement with the MLB isn’t as strict. Each team can decide whether or not to use the iPad Pros.


Jacob Kleinman

Jacob Kleinman has been working as a journalist online and in print since he arrived at Wesleyan University in 2007. After graduating, he took a...