It appears that Major League Baseball will be following in the footsteps of the NBA and NHL in 2016. Following both of those leagues choosing to offer single team streaming packages for their League Pass and GameCenter services for the 2015-16 season (pushed along by a class action lawsuit settlement, of course), MLB will be reportedly be rolling out a single team package for MLB.tv in 2016 according to Instagraphs.
Instagraphs’ Nathaniel Grow dug through a recent court filing in an MLB anti-trust lawsuit and found the following passage about MLB.tv single team packages.
“beginning next season MLB will make single-team, out-of-market streams available for purchase (alongside the out-of-market package) on MLB.TV.”
The NBA’s new single team League Pass plan has been a massive success so far. Purchases are at a record level this season, led by the single team package for the Warriors. The NBA is also experimenting with single game packages and social media viewing, though it’s still uncertain if MLB will go down that route in 2016.
Knowing what we know about League Pass and GameCenter pricing for this season, I’d expect the single team MLB.tv packages to run something like $100 for the full season of one team’s games, given that MLB.tv is advertising a holiday special of $129.99 for the full league package in 2016. If you were paying the $130 anyway and don’t watch any team aside from the one you cheer for…it’s a no-brainer, right?
Remember, the usual caveats apply here – no national exclusive (Sunday Night Baseball, for starters) games are included, and nothing that airs locally (on your local RSN) is included either. Also, MLB’s silly blackout windows are still in effect, so fans in Las Vegas and Iowa are blacked out of a good five or six teams every night.
But if you’re a Braves fan in Montana, or a Yankees fan in Texas, or a Phillies fan in Florida? It just makes sense to go with a single team package if you don’t care about watching any of the other 29 teams each night.