Earlier this month we learned that Bally Sports may elect to not pay the Padres and drop their contract. Reportedly Bally Sports is losing money on the team, and it may skip paying them and instead return the TV rights to the MLB. Now it is being reported that Bally Sports’ parent company has let the deadline to pay the Padre’s and has returned the media rights back to the MLB, effective tomorrow.
This move puts the MLB’s backup plans in the event an RSN network is unable to pay its rights into action.
There have been rumors that MLB would stream the games through the MLB.TV app for free. There have also been reports that MLB has been in talks with streaming partners like YouTube to stream the games in the market for fans as MLB. It has been reported that MLB is looking for other cable TV networks interested in airing MLB games to replace Bally Sports if needed. For now, we will have to wait and see what happens as the MLB is rushing to put its backup plan into action.
According to Sports Business Journal, Bally Sports is promising to pay the full amount owed to each of its remaining MLB team if they agree to let them stream games direct to consumers in the market through their app. Bally Sports’ parent company went on to say that if they can’t make payments, they will return the TV rights to MLB at any time during its contract.
Reportedly the Angels, Braves, Cardinals, D-backs, Guardians, Padres, Rangers, Reds, and Twins have all failed to reach a deal with Bally Sports over their streaming rights. This deal could mean these teams would start streaming in the market through the Bally Sports app without the need for a TV provider.
For now, we will have to wait and see what happens at tomorrow’s bankruptcy hearing over the payments to some MLB teams.