Pitch, TV Show forecasting Women in the MLB
The new show “Pitch”, which features a black, female protagonist who happens to be the first woman to play in the major leagues, is starting this week on Fox. Major League Baseball and Fox have entered into a partnership that gives the show unprecedented access to the majors for assistance on the show.
No money exchanged for pact on “Pitch”
MLB and Fox have a relationship amounting to around $12.4 Billion for the rights to air games through the World Series and Postseason, but they did not exchange any money for their pact in respect to Pitch. However, there are certain non-monetary advantages for both sides. The MLB is basically in complete support of the show and will permit the use of team uniforms, equipment, and team names. Also, the MLB will allow the use of stadiums as shooting locations and give consulting to the cast and crew on how the game is played. This is to ensure that the game the people see on their television looks as real as possible.
It’s not just about game play. Gregg Olson, ex Baltimore Orioles pitcher, has been working with the production team and Kylie Bunbury, the lead actress of the show, on the important points of playing. Olson, journeyman catcher Chad Kreuter and ex-Giants shortstop Royce Clayton met with the writers of the show to discuss what happens between players on the field between games and behind the scenes.
They had detailed talks about what racism appears like in baseball and what it would really be like to have a female on the roster, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
No “Pitch” without MLB: Fogelman
Fox will benefit from this unprecedented level of support from MLB on “Pitch”. It will give the show the authenticity that no other baseball TV show or movie has ever had. Dan Fogelman, show co-creator, said if they did not have MLB then he does not think they could have done the show, because he did not want to create fictional teams.
He added, “That defeats the whole purpose.”
He then explained that it is important to present the show in a good light and remind people that baseball is an amazing sport. However, topics like gambling, domestic abuse allegations and steroids are not off-limits, and the show will deal with these issues in a real way.
Rick Singer, co-creator, says the main concerns of MLB were that they were going to paint the game in a bad light. He said MLB just wanted to make sure that the show creators were interested in telling good stories and not salacious, “just for the sake of, ‘Oh, let’s do steroids this week and gambling next week.’”
In a phone interview, the star of the show Kylie Bunbury said she is definitely doing a lot of Epsom salt baths and wrapping her arm. She stated that just like a pro athlete, she is aching in places she has never ached before. This shows that the production is pretty serious about making the show look real.