Major League Baseball is co-producing a baseball drama aimed at Generation Z

13 Comments

My dad, born in 1943, is supposedly a member of the “Silent Generation,” which means that he liked Bob Dylan, but only as long as he played protest songs and liked protests only as long as the protesters had short hair and got a damn job.

My mom, born in 1948 is a Baby Boomer and pretty much fits the stereotypical bill. She wore stuff with shoulder pads in it in the 80s and watched “M*A*S*H”. What, you thought all Baby Boomers were at Woodstock? Bah.

I date to 1973, which means I spent most of my 20s and 30s overly-preoccupied with “authenticity” without ever bothering to ask why, setting back my emotional development a good ten years. I also have strong feelings for Winona Ryder and never felt older than when she showed up as the half-crazy mom of a high school kid in “Stranger Things.”

My fiancee was born in 1980 and, according to most sources, that makes her a Millennial, but she bristles at that label. I can see both sides. In some ways she has more Gen-X qualities, separate and apart from liking a tired old Gen-X guy like me, than Millennial qualities. On the other hand, she is constantly explaining to me how technology works and unironically likes things simply because they bring her joy and that’s TOTALLY not a Gen-X thing.

Point is: generations are somewhat amorphous and difficult to peg. Major League Baseball thinks it has a way of getting to a specific generation, however. Via a new TV show:

Today, AwesomenessTV and Major League Baseball announced that their new scripted series “Out of My League” will premiere on September 19th on AwesomenessTV. The series features an all-star cast featuring Lauren Elizabeth Luthringshausen (3M fans) and Brian Redmon (654K fans) with Caeli Santa Olalla (16.9M fans) and Ryan Abe (857K fans). Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star center fielder, Joc Pederson (439K fans) also makes a special appearance.

Shot in and around legendary Dodger Stadium, “Out of My League” follows Claire (Luthringshausen), a die-hard Dodgers fan visiting her dad in LA for the summer, and Chase (Redmon), a surfer who knows little about baseball. Claire is doing a good job avoiding distractions while spending her days at the ballpark rooting on her team, until she meets Chase and both of their worlds are turned upside down.

“We produce premium content that engages our Gen Z audience, and partnering with MLB gave us the opportunity to make stories with the themes this audience cares about in the iconic setting of America’s pastime, “said Paul Kelly, Chief Partnerships Officer at AwesomenessTV.  “‘Out of My League’ brings a new perspective of the baseball experience to this audience, whether they are established supporters of teams or new baseball fans.”

The trailer is below.

Full disclosure: “AwesomenessTV” is, apparently, partially owned by NBC’s parent company, Comcast, even if I’ve never heard of it before. I have heard of Major League Baseball and will grant that (a) this show is not aimed at me, it’s aimed at “Generation Z,” which I assume is what my daughter’s generation is; and (b) a show like this may be better received by those types than yet another appearance of Fallout Boy playing a three-year-old song before the All-Star Game is, so good for Major League Baseball for making an effort.

Which is to say, hey, whatever works. Beyond Joc Pederson’s leaden acting in the trailer (should’ve gotten Puig for that part!), your appreciation for it will likely be directly proportional to how close you are to being the target audience:

 

Zack Britton’s season over, TJ surgery comeback out of time

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
1 Comment

NEW YORK — Zack Britton‘s season is over, his comeback from Tommy John surgery cut short after just three relief appearances for the New York Yankees.

New York put the 34-year-old left-hander on the 60-day injured list and selected the contract of right-hander Jacob Barnes from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Britton was removed after throwing a tiebreaking wild pitch in a 2-1 loss to Baltimore, an outing that lasted just nine pitches. The two-time All-Star had Tommy John surgery on Sept. 8, 2021, and made eight minor league injury rehabilitation appearances starting Aug. 24 and three big league appearances beginning Sept. 24. He threw 36 pitches to nine batters with a 13.50 ERA, six walks and one strikeout.

“Kind of running out of time here and having a little bit of fatigue last night, it’s like one of those things, you don’t want to power through that and reach for more and then do some damage as you’re coming back,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “He’s in a good spot heading into the offseason.”

Britton had hoped to be able to help the Yankees in the postseason. He is eligible for free agency after the World Series.

“It’s just that final sharpness,” Boone said. “At this point in the season, just kind of up against it there. But he worked his tail off to put himself in this position and give himself an opportunity and certainly admire that.”

Barnes, 32, started the season with Detroit and was released on June 18 after going 3-1 with a 6.10 ERA in 22 relief appearances. He struck out 10 and walked nine in 20 2/3 innings.

Barnes signed a minor league contract with Seattle, made four relief appearances for Triple-A Tacoma, then was brought up by the Mariners and designated for assignment two days later without playing in a game. He refused an outright assignment, signed back with the Tigers and made five appearances at Triple-A Toledo. Released by the Mud Hens, he signed with Scranton on Aug. 30 and had a 2.25 ERA in 10 games for the RailRiders.

Boone said reliever Clay Holmes will not go on the IL after receiving a cortisone injection for inflammation in his right rotator cuff. If the Yankees had put Holmes on the IL, he would not be available for the Division Series.

After playing his first game since Sept. 4 and going 0 for 3, DJ LeMahieu said his injured right second toe felt fine. He is in a 2-for-41 slide.

“It felt good to play again,” LeMahieu said. “I felt like a baseball player.”

Matt Carpenter, sidelined since breaking his left toot on Aug. 8, ran on the field and will be among players reporting to training camp for Double-A Somerset, where there will be eight or nine pitchers. Boone anticipates Carpenter being available for the postseason as a pinch-hitter or designated hitter.

Right-hander Frankie Montas, sidelined since Sept. 16 by inflammation in his pitching shoulder, has resumed throwing.

“I don’t know about the Division Series,” Boone said, “more likely beyond.”