Last year, YouTube rolled out its long-awaited live television streaming service, YouTube TV. Along with the slow-and-steady rollout, the subscription rates haven’t been the highest either. Therefore, YouTube is pulling in a relief pitcher to close out the game. They are calling on live sports.
Live Sports and Streaming
The biggest reason people have been holding out on cutting the cord is that they are nuts about their live sports. Therefore, many streaming services are attempting to sign exclusivity contracts with some of the most viable sporting leagues on the globe.
With ESPN bringing the prices of cable packages to all-time highs, streaming services are attempting to pick up the slack and sales wherever they can. That is why YouTube TV is offering at least 13 free Major League Baseball (MLB) games during the 2019-2020 season.
MLB and Facebook Watch
In this ever-evolving world of how we consume television, MLB has been working overtime to find its place. Last year, the organization dipped its toes into the streaming waters by partnering with the burgeoning social media platform, Facebook Watch. They allowed the growing site exclusive access to 26 games last baseball season.
Rob Shaw, Facebook Sports Partnership Lead, Leagues & Media, stated,
“We look forward to testing a new model for live games, which should help the league continue to reach a younger and more global audience.”– Rob Shaw, Facebook Sports Partnership Lead, Leagues & Media
Following the success of this partnership, MLB decided to strike another deal with Facebook Watch this year. Prior to inking a deal with YouTube, the sports league entered this year’s agreement with a little less give.
As of right now, Facebook Watch will have exclusive rights to only six games. This clause allowed MLB to enter negotiations with YouTube with another deal that’s sure to delight baseball fans looking to cut the cord.
YouTube and MLB Partnership
The special YouTube-MLB partnership is first set to take place on the actual YouTube website. Those who log into YouTube on the day of the announced games will get free access to the sporting event as long as they are in the following areas:
- United States
- Puerto Rico
Those within these areas will have the ability to take in the games through their smartphones, tablets, and Smart TVs.
MLB and YouTube TV
As of right now, the only confirmed source for these 13 free MLB games is through the regular YouTube website. However, those at YouTube note that YouTube TV will also carry this perk.
In fact, the 13 games streaming for free via YouTube will be done on YouTube TV through a specialty channel. The specialty channel has not been set up yet. We will keep you updated on any breaking news on this front.
YouTube TV and MLB Exclusivity Rights
YouTube will have exclusive rights to these 13 games. It’s been confirmed that local network affiliates and MLB TV will forgo airing the game to benefit this newfound partnership.
In addition, MLB will produce pre-shows and post-shows for these 13 games. This agreement allows YouTube to introduce some of their content creators to MLB fans. As part of their agreement, YouTube personalities will make appearances on MLB-YouTube telecasts.