Robot helps sick boy throw pitch for MLB game
Google Fiber employed telerobotics to help the young baseball fan join the game from 1,800 miles away.
Thu, Jun 13 2013 at 10:45 AM
Photo: Snapshot/MLB.com video
When Nick LeGrande of Kansas City, Mo., was diagnosed with a rare blood disorder earlier this year, only one thing made the 13-year-old cry: his doctors told him that he would have to give up playing baseball for a while.
Yet they didn’t say he couldn’t play with the help of a robot, which is exactly what happened last night when LeGrande threw out the first pitch at the Yankees versus A's game in Oakland, via telerobotics designed by Google Fiber.
In the office space of Google Fiber's Kansas City headquarters, a team designed a small baseball stadium. LeGrande, who suffers from aplastic anemia, went to the custom field and threw the pitch while his movements were instantly transmitted from Kansas City to a robot set atop the pitcher's mount at the Oakland Coliseum. As LeGrande pitched, the robot processed the motion and delivered a similar pitch. The robot also gave LeGrande a view from the mound.
"He's going to be talking about this for years," says his mother in the video below:
And below is a video of the actual pitch from the game:
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