The New York Yankees are reportedly close to entering the direct to consumer streaming game.
Per the New York Post, YES Network and the Yankees are targeting Opening Day for the launch of a YES DTC offering.
And while Opening Day is the goal for the service’s launch, the Post reports that “YES won’t press go unless everything is lined up.” Pricing hasn’t been decided quite yet, though we can assume it’ll be somewhere in the range of Bally Sports+ ($19.99 per month or $189.99 per year) and NESN 360 ($29.99 per month or $329.99 per year, with the annual package including eight game tickets).
Taking the DTC step is logical for the Yankees and YES. RSNs have started trending that direction as they’ve been dropped by cable, satellite, and streaming companies, creating financial craters in their balance sheets. If a diehard Yankees fan wants to cut the cord to save some money, they’ll have a legal option to watch their team once this service launches. The pricing probably won’t be a bargain, but RSNs need to toe the line with their DTC pricing so carriers don’t drop them en masse and cause the financial woes to spiral even further.
Which team and RSN will be next? Keep an eye on the Cubs and their Marquee Sports Network. Last year, the Cubs and network partner Sinclair (owner of the Bally Sports RSNs through subsidiary Diamond Sports) began mulling plans about a DTC service, only to receive pushback from MLB. Following the launch of Bally Sports+, NESN 360, and the eventual launch of the still unnamed YES DTC service, would MLB still object to the Cubs launching a service of their own?