Yankees fans will soon be the first in baseball to buy games streamed on broadband to computers and wireless devices within the team’s local market, according to executives briefed on the pending deal but not authorized to speak publicly about it.
The agreement between the Yankees’ YES Network and Major League Baseball ends a logjam that has prevented teams from making their games available on the Internet within their designated markets. Some teams have wanted to do it, but financial arrangements between them and baseball could not be reached.
Teams stand to gain a new source of revenue, from the millions of broadband users around the country who are not sitting in front of their televisions but are in offices and other locations with a laptop or a wireless device.
The agreement between the Yankees’ YES Network and Major League Baseball Advanced Media, which controls the Internet rights of all 30 teams, will let fans inside the New York market buy a subscription to Yankees games. They will be able to watch on computers, laptops and other devices, giving the games a portability they have not had.This is very good idea and it's going to be great for fans. I'd be surprised to see the other cable not jump at this opportunity, hopefully they pick this up soon. I'm talking to you Time Warner.
The first carrier to sign up is Cablevision, which will share revenue with YES and M.L.B.A.M. Fans can buy the in-market Yankee games only if they already subscribe to the expanded basic service on Cablevision that includes YES. The Yankees’ cable network is pursuing similar deals with other local cable operators, like Time Warner, and telecommunications services, like Verizon.
With the Yankees deal complete, other teams are expected to follow.
The Yankees’ service is supposed to start sometime this season and follows quickly on Cablevison’s recent renewal of its YES contract. A price was not available.