Disney-Owned ESPN Extend Partnership With MLB
isney-owned ESPN have reached a new seven-year broadcast partnership with Major League Baseball (MLB) worth USD$550 million (AUD$709 million) per year, commencing in 2022.
The current deal is worth USD$700 million (AUD$903 million) with the new deal dropping the number of ESPN exclusive games from 90 to 30.
Each game is worth USD$7.8 million (AUD$10 million) in the current deal, however the new deal will increase each game’s worth to USD$18.3 million (AUD$23.6 million).
ESPN will have the exclusive rights to broadcast all MLB Wild Card series games, the Little League Classic, the MLB opening night game and the Home Run Derby.
ESPN+ will continue to broadcast non-exclusive regular season games and also gain the rights to create new MLB content for the streaming platform.
MLB commissioner, Rob Manfred, said: “This extension continues the evolution of our relationship with a focus on utilising ESPN’s extensive assets to shine a spotlight on key matchups throughout the year.”
“With reach across broadcast, cable, streaming and social, ESPN is able to deliver MLB action to our broad fanbase across multiple platforms.
“As the way in which fans consume baseball continues to change, this partnership provides expanded opportunities for fans to engage with our content, and we are excited to present those new opportunities,” he said.
This is the second multi-year broadcast contract this week for ESPN, having acquired the English and Spanish language rights for La Liga.