The deal makes TBS the exclusive home to the most MLB Postseason games of any network, a new season-long Tuesday night game franchise, and expansive digital rights for Bleacher Report and additional WarnerMedia platforms. The new Tuesday night broadcast will be anchored by five-time Sports Emmy Award winning host Ernie Johnson, joined by Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez, World Series Champion Jimmy Rollins and a newcomer in three-time All-Star Curtis Granderson. The new studio team will debut during this year’s MLB Postseason beginning with the American League Division Series.
“We’re delighted to extend our long-standing relationship with Major League Baseball and all of the opportunities this agreement offers us as we broaden our coverage of the game across all of our platforms,” said Zucker. “We will continue to further evolve our multiplatform delivery of content with a focus on storytelling and innovation in all forms.”
The MLB/TBS agreement is billed as one of the longest-running relationships in the broadcast-rights world, dating back to 1973 when MLB games were first televised on WTCG (now TBS). Here’s what’s covered in the extension:
- TBS will exclusively televise one League Championship Series each year of the agreement, alternating between the ALCS and NLCS each season
- TBS will have exclusive rights to televise two of the four MLB Division Series, which will alternate between AL and NL each year (featuring the same league as the network’s LCS coverage)
- TBS will carry one Wild Card Game, which will be consistent with the network’s Division Series and LCS coverage (AL or NL each year)
- TBS will have a new season-long Tuesday night package with a national game telecast each week, doubling the amount of live regular-season game telecasts currently airing on the network
The new deal really doesn’t extend MLB’s reach in the streaming world: it maintains access to games on TBS via TV Everywhere rights to authenticated subscribers across Turner Sports platforms.