EI back on cable!!!!!

NY Times article on the cable deal for EI

"Cable subscribers will once again be able to watch out-of-market
Major League Baseball games, ending their fears that the Extra Innings
package would become the exclusive domain of DirecTV for the next seven
years.

M.L.B. and InDemand — a
consortium that is owned by the cable operators Comcast, Time Warner
and Cox — agreed last night to restore Extra Innings swiftly to their
systems as a free preview through sometime next week, after which it
will cost a discounted $159 for a short period.

The
crucial part of the negotiations for baseball was InDemand’s agreement
to carry the MLB Channel, which is to make its debut in 2009.

Between the deals made with DirecTV and InDemand, baseball said the
channel will have 40 million subscribers when it starts. “We believe we
have a compelling product that our fans are passionate about,” Brosnan
said.

Robert D. Jacobson, InDemand’s president, said: “We’re
very comfortable with the deal. We feel we were treated very fairly
related to DirecTV.”

The InDemand partnership received an equity
stake of a little below 20 percent in the MLB Channel, which is about
equal to DirecTV’s.

M.L.B. will receive an average of $100
million a year through 2013 for the Extra Innings rights from DirecTV
and cable operators. The size of their yearly payments will be reduced
if Dish negotiates its own deal.

Baseball will benefit further
from its majority share of the estimated $120 million in annual gross
subscriber fees that the channel will generate."

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So …. is everyone happy?
1) MLB got a boatload of added revenue
2) MLB got its Baseball Channel on cable starting in ’09
3) Cable-based fans got EI back

I’m still not happy with MLB’s heavy-handedness of this whole event, but I’m thrilled to be able to watch out-of-market games when I want to on cable.

1 Comment

The battle to disinfranchise more than 200,000 fans of baseball was despicable from the beginning.

Why would MLB want to do that? It’s non-sensical – akin to someone just willfully shooting themselves in the foot.

Thankfully, Senator Kerry rose to the forefront and (according to news reports) coerced a settlement that benefited (me) – one of those nameless fans.

Hopefully, MLB will find a way to live comfortably with the purported $100 million a year generated for the duration of this contract.

Next question……..what is the next threat to me and other fans – posed by this so-called MLB Channel? Senator Kerry………stand by (Please!).

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