Major League Baseball makes Google Cloud official cloud partner as AWS strikes out

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Updated March 6 Major League Baseball (MLB) has selected Google Cloud as its official cloud partner, bringing to an end the company’s long-standing relationship with Amazon Web Services (AWS).

In what both companies described as a ‘powerful multi-year collaboration’, MLB will migrate its cloud and on-premise systems to Google Cloud, as well as move Google in to power tracking technology Statcast. Machine learning – which was cited when MLB extended its AWS deal in 2018 – is also a factor in this move, with the baseball arbiter also citing application management and video storage capabilities.

MLB will continue to use Google’s Ad Manager and Dynamic Ad Insertion to power its advertising arm for the third season running – a factor noted by the company in this change.

“MLB has enjoyed a strong partnership with Google based on Google Ad Manager’s live ad delivery with as well as YouTube’s strong fan engagement during exclusive live games,” said Jason Gaedtke, MLB chief technology officer in a statement. “We are excited to strengthen this partnership by consolidating MLB infrastructure on Google Cloud and incorporating Google’s world-class machine learning technology to provide personalised and immersive fan experiences.”

After two months of 2020, Google continues to be by far the noisiest of the main cloud providers in terms of updates and announcements. Among its other customers acquired this year are Lowe’s and Wayfair, announced during the NRF retail extravaganza in January, and decentralised network Hedera Hashgraph.

What makes this move interesting is with regard to AWS’ expertise in the sporting arena, with several marquee brands on board. Formula 1 and NASCAR are the best known in terms of arbiters, with the Bundesliga signing up earlier this year. Google Cloud’s best-known sporting customer to date is the Golden State Warriors, in a deal announced this time last year.

Google Cloud has confirmed to CloudTech that MLB is migrating all workloads to its platform. The MLB logo no longer appears on AWS’ dedicated sports client page – it was still there as of February 29 (screenshot: CloudTech).

You can read the full announcement here.

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