Lifer: Post-season Edition
Welcome back to the sixth installment of Lifer by All Heels on Deck! After a brief hiatus, Lifer is back with all new content for baseball fans like you. Our team of writers have been hard at work this last week thinking of ways to bring you closer to the game we all love.
It’s October, so you know what that means! We’re in the midst of MLB’s Postseason, the most intense month the baseball season has to offer. It’s only fitting that this edition of Lifer be dedicated to the season we all love, even if our team didn’t make it this far.
What does it mean to a part of a team? Is there some joining force that rallies fans and players together as one? This season, Major League Baseball has gotten very creative with team branding, giving each team their own unique slogan for fans to use on social media. Well, this new branding is continuing into the Postseason. Our Karen Soutar takes a closer look at some of the creative Postseason gear fans can buy to make you feel even more connected to their favorite playoff team.
With the growing popularity of streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube TV, the need for cable television is becoming more obsolete. What happens then, if you don’t have cable when every playoff game is broadcast on cable? Helen Silfin dives into the techniques and platforms you can use to ensure you won’t miss a second of October baseball.
So, join us as we do life the baseball fan way! You don’t want to miss this edition of Lifer!
2018 Postseason Gear:
By Karen Soutar
If you’re a fan of one of the 10 MLB teams in the 2018 playoffs, you might be interested in picking up some gear to wear. Whether you’re lucky enough to be attending a game, or just want something to wear around to support your team, MLB offers some good choices this year.
Over the past few seasons, MLB chose a slogan for each playoff team, and used it on Postseason merch. In 2015 it was “Take October”. In 2016 it was “Made for October”, along with “Postseason 2016” and the specific team logo. While it’s certainly nice to have postseason gear to wear, there wasn’t much to set one playoff team’s merchandise apart from another, besides the teams’ logo.
This year, MLB has taken creativity to another level. The common slogan for 2018 is “Defend”, and from that point, each team’s merchandise is more unique. For each of the six division winners, merchandise recognizes the division that they’ve won. Using the Cleveland Indians as an example, all their merch reads “AL Central Division Champs” in small print at the top. For each of the four Wild Card teams, merch reads “Postseason” instead. It’s after this initial branding that each team’s merchandise differentiates. This is followed by large print that is the focal point of the merch: “Defend Tribe Town” (Cleveland), “Defend H-Town” (Houston), “Defend the Bronx” (New York), “Defend Fenway” (Boston), “Defend So Cal” (Los Angeles)… You get the idea.
But that’s not all! There are other options which are completely unique to each specific team, most of which incorporate official Twitter hashtags: #NeverSettle (Houston), #RallyTogether (Cleveland), #ForEachOther (Atlanta), #FlyTheW (Chicago Cubs). Others have gone completely unique in origin: Rocktober (Colorado. For anyone who was a baseball fan in 2007, who could forget their magical playoff run that year?!); Unite in the Bronx (obviously the New York Yankees); Our Crew Our October (Milwaukee); LA Determined (LA Dodgers); Do Damage (Boston); Win For Hero-Town (Oakland). For New York Yankee fans, there is #UniteInTheBronx.
Apparel includes hats, T-shirts and hoodies for men, women, and children. There are men’s big & tall and women’s plus sizes available.
The MLB post-season is now squarely focused on the perfect hashtag, so why not wear your team AND hashtag pride, Twitter/baseball lovers?
Cutting The Cord:
How to Consume October Baseball
By Helen Silfin
As someone who was used to a house full of TVs tuned to MLB Network, I never pictured myself not being able to watch a playoff game. Yet, this year I moved out of my childhood home and into an apartment with Wi-Fi, but not cable. Now that I have survived not only the end of the regular season but also the first rounds of postseason play, I feel qualified to direct other young people lost in this crazy cable-free world.
My first tip is to take advantage of streaming. If your parents or sibling or best friend has cable and will share their log-in information, you should be good to go. MLB Network, FS1, and TBS all allow you to watch live with a cable log-in. This is how I’ve watched most games because the apocalypse will come before my family cuts the cord.
My next tip is to use as many screens as possible. Sometimes games overlap. Sometimes you want to replay a web gem while keeping up with live action. Sometimes you also want to watch Dancing With The Stars. I’m just saying, if a game can be streamed on your computer, it can be streamed on a smartphone or tablet, too. The phone/tablet option also comes in handy when you know you could fall asleep at any moment and don’t want to risk your laptop sliding off your bed.
My final tip would be to use social media, especially Twitter, to your advantage. If you find yourself unable to stream a game or simply too busy to watch, the official @MLB account has been pretty quick to upload highlights, and people like @PitchingNinja will keep you up-to-date with what everybody is talking about. I have done this more than once already this postseason and have missed so little that I am pretty sure by 2020 there’ll be accounts live-tweeting every play of each game in .gif form.
Adjusting to life without cable is very much a first world problem, but it can be done. Lord knows if I can get used to watching all my TV online, you can, too. (And don't tell anybody I told you this but if you are really in a bind and looking for a way to watch an MLB stream, reddit can be your best friend.)