MLB doesn’t seem to care for overseas fans: An Overseas fan’s Gripe

Okay so for many that may seem to be a bit of over kill. Perhaps I am being over dramatic- you may say. No. I am not being over dramatic. I got into baseball in 1986 as a goofy nine year old. Since then I have tried to keep up with the sport as hard as it was back in pre-internet days.

It has been much easier since the internet kicked off to follow the fortunes of my team, and the sport I love (and consider the best in the world.) Bud Selig certainly seemed to foster the idea within baseball of making it a sport that was counted as a world sport. Like the NFL it has a large following overseas but unlike the NFL it seems to have very little interest in fostering and developing that interest anymore.

Look I pay a lot of money for my team- I pay more than I get out of it in a quantitative means. For example in order to make sure I get genuine merchandise of my favourite team I have to order from the US. Now that means I will pay more for postage than I do for the actual item. I am okay with that. It means that in my own way I have invested something into the team besides the emotions that comes with being a fan.

I pay for games by subscribing to the MLB network. I do this despite preferring to listen to the games rather than watching them- this is because I love listening to the commentary of John Sterling. The man is awesome. I know that the chances of the Yanks coming to play over here are slender. Even though the Yanks owners and the Red Sox owners both have substantial links to English Premiership clubs (Manchester City and Liverpool FC). So unlike fans in America I don’t have much chance of being able to walk into any baseball field and watch a game live. Streaming online- both live and on demand games are all I have.

So when the MLB decided this season to tinker with their website and their apps prior to the beginning of the post season I was disgusted to find out that they had rewarded the loyalty of international fans by simply messing with the service. The website crashes so much that I have all but given up going to it. I can’t even read articles there now let alone watching videos. Trying to stream the baseball on my Android, Smart TV and Xbox is like a game of roulette as to whether it will work or not. Most times they crash. This has left me feeling that the MLB have a kind of mindset that says international fans, are not worth really bothering with.

I hope that they will be bothered to fix this problem and get their website back up and running so we can get back to watching and listening to games online that way, and that what “update” they used to mess up the apps, is undone. I’d hate to resort to not subscribing to the MLB network this upcoming season- instead subscribing to another provider to watch the games. Because in the end I could be one of those fans who buy cheap unofficial merchandise, who don’t pay for streams but merely watch the recaps and find other more nefarious means of watching the games. I could be one of those but I wouldn’t. I want to pay to watch the games. I want to support my team and invest in the league. But not if they keep on treating me as less than an after thought. Because loving the game is not enough to make me pay for shoddy service. I hope the MLB sort their act out. As it stands it is not good enough.


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