“Matt Beaty had seen it before. The floppy blond hair. The low leg kick. The towering overhead release point. The blistering sinker with a late, devastating bite.
Beaty had never faced Noah Syndergaard before the Dodgers’ game against the New York Mets on May 29. But thanks to the newest hitting tool at the Dodgers’ disposal, the rookie already had a feel for Syndergaard’s stuff. When he stepped to the plate, he knew what to expect.Beaty is among a growing contingent of Dodgers embracing virtual reality batting practice, a cutting-edge device that uses a VR headset to create immersive visual experiences and simulate at-bats against opposing pitchers.
The release point, velocity and movement of pitches thrown by any MLB pitcher against the backdrop of any stadium can be summoned with a few keystrokes and observed through the headset. Batters can hold a miniature bat with a toggle they press to indicate when they would begin a swing, or they can merely watch the computer-generated pitches…”