Reports: MLB Reaches In-Market Streaming Agreement With FOX Sports RSNs
In-market streaming has been a rigorously negotiated issue for the past few years and Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) appears to have made its first significant step forward by striking a deal with FOX Sports and its collection of regional sports networks to provide in-market streaming beginning in the 2016 season.
According the Spots Business Journal reporters John Ourand and Michael Smith, MLB “is drafting deal documents with Fox,” which accounts for half of the league’s 30 teams.
The in-market authentication will be on FOX Sports’ end meaning that the content falls more into the TV Everywhere model as opposed to over-the-top. So cord-cutting baseball fans are still locked up with the TVs. In-market streams will not be available as part of an MLB.TV subscription, but instead will be accessible on FOX Sports Go and distributors’ web sites and apps. The SBJ report cites that BAM Tech will provide the backend technology to support the FOX Sports streams.
Coming to an agreement with FOX could be a significant first domino as the league will now look to lock up in-market streaming deals with its remaining regional partners Comcast, ROOT Sports, MASN, NESN, and SportsNet in Canada.
The 15 teams that are FOX Sports regional network partners are the Cleveland Indians (SportsTime Ohio), Detroit Tigers (FOX Sports Detroit), Kansas City Royals (FOX Sports Royals), Los Angeles Angels (FOX Sports West), Minnesota Twins (FOX Sports North), New York Yankees (YES Network), Seattle Mariners (FOX Sports Northwest), Tampa Bay Rays (Sun Sports), Texas Rangers (FOX Sports Southwest), Arizona Diamondbacks (FOX Sports Arizona), Atlanta Braves (FOX Sports South), Cincinnati Reds (FOX Sports Ohio), Miami Marlins (FOX Sports Florida), San Diego Padres (FOX Sports San Diego), and the St. Louis Cardinals (FOX Sports Midwest).