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MLB on Cusp of TV Extensions with FOX, TBS That Will Net $800M Annually PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Maury Brown   
Thursday, 20 September 2012 17:51

MLBWhen MLB inked the largest television rights extension in their history with ESPN in late August (see ESPN Reaches Largest Broadcast Deal Ever for MLB), the question was what would happen with the games that FOX and TBS were covering as the other broadcast partners with the league. Would extensions with the two transpire? Would the games all move to one of the two, or would NBC Sports Network jump into the fray? With ESPN ostensibly doubling their rights fee, it set the table.

Now, it appears that both FOX and TBS will renew their deals with the league, and follow suit with ESPN and double the rights fees. Both extensions would begin in 2014 and would run through 2021, just as the ESPN extension does. FOX will reportedly pay approx. $500 million annually while TBS will jump to $300 million per year.

All told, that means MLB will now see $1.5 billion annually in national television rights fees, up 111 percent from the $711.7 million they currently see.

How will this affect the individual clubs?

With MLB’s national media rights revenues part of the league’s central funds that are distributed evenly to all 30 clubs, each one will see $50 million annually, or an additional $26.28 million each year over the $23.72 million they  now see. That could give each club the ability to be competitive for a star-caliber free agent, and then some.

The following breaks down how the broadcast deals will look once completed

Broadcast Partner

Prior (Annually)

New (Annually)

Increase (Annually)

Total Contract

ESPN

$306 million

$700 million

$394 million

$5.6 billion

FOX

$257.1 million

$500 million

$242.9 million

$4 billion

TBS

$148.6 million

$300 million

$151.4 million

$2.4 billion

TOTAL

$711.7 million

$1.5 billion

$788.3 million

$12 billion


Maury BrownMaury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He writes for Baseball Prospectus and is a contributor to Forbes. He is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided).

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