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iON offers Mets fans a view never seen before

NEW YORK -- Most people don't know what it looks like to throw batting practice. Dave Racaniello is here to help.

Racaniello, along with fellow Mets bullpen catcher Eric Langill, was among those who recently donned an iON headband camera prior to a Mets game at Citi Field for a new Major League Baseball Advanced Media series called, "The Game I Love."

The videos are meant to give fans a glimpse into the action from a point of view not typically available on regular broadcasts -- like playing catch in the outfield grass, catching a home run or throwing batting practice. The Mets installment of the series depicts a game at Citi Field.

Be it via the Dodgers (Justin Turner during BP), the Braves (a batboy for two innings) or the Tigers (the grounds crew prepping the field), fans get access to the gameday routine from a perspective usually experienced only by, well, the makeshift cameramen.

"It was pretty lightweight," Racaniello said of the camera. "I didn't really feel like it was there. When I started throwing, it was no big deal."

Added Langill: "It was kind of like if you were in the mines. It's pretty light."

"The Game I Love" has six parts this season. In addition to the teams noted above, the Rockies and Cardinals also took part. The Randy and Jason Sklar Bros. -- the comedians of "Cheap Seats" fame -- will be wearing them for their first pitch in St. Louis on Jose Oquendo Night on Saturday.

Langill fielded pregame grounders at shortstop, and he said the camera makes it easy to see just how quickly balls approach -- a lot faster than it might normally seem.

"Being in the infield would be the big thing, to show how hard the ball is hit," Racaniello said. "The same could be said for standing on the mound there at 45 feet and getting line drives hit back at that screen."

Tim Healey is an associate reporter for
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