MINNEAPOLIS -- Televisions lit up all over metropolitan New York City on Wednesday evening, broadcasting the Yankees' 4-3 win over the Twins, just as every other Yankees game is televised. And alongside them, for the first time in history, New York's computer monitors also glowed bright with Yankee blue.
Thursday marked the debut of "Yankees on YES," a new service that allows eligible Cablevision subscribers to watch in-market games on their computers. For either a monthly or a season-long fee, fans in the metro area no longer have to worry about sitting in front of their televisions to watch the game. Any computer monitor will do.
Derek Jeter called the service "a positive" for Yankees fans, predicting that other teams will soon follow (and he's right, of course -- the Padres will launch their own version later this month). YES CEO Tracy Dolgin called the partnership between his company, Cablevision and MLB Advanced Media an opportunity to introduce in-market streaming to "the greatest fans in the world." And similar superlatives rained down from all corners of the baseball world.
Those watching on their computers for the first time on Wednesday had reason to be impressed. A fast start for the Yankees turned shaky when the Twins attempted to mount a late comeback, giving the Yankees a reason to sweat and their fans a reason to stay tuned to the game. Nothing was decided until Mariano Rivera mowed down the top of the Twins order in the bottom of the ninth.
"We're playing good ball," said A.J. Burnett, who came away with his eighth victory. "We've got an above-average offensive team, above-average defense and we're above average everywhere else. It's just a matter of having fun and playing ball and playing the right way, and that's what we're doing."
It was a dramatic debut, but perhaps the service will be put to even better use around lunchtime on Thursday, when the Twins and Yankees meet for the last of three games at the Metrodome. Most of New York City's nine-to-fivers will be at the office as Francisco Liriano throws the first pitch to Jeter, far away from their couches and televisions.
But "Yankees on YES" will allow that crowd to minimize their spreadsheets and sneak a few peeks on their computer monitors. Now they can watch at the office, just as they would at home.
Wednesday's game was merely a start. The Yankees hope their new streaming video subscribers will be able to see many more like it.
Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.