Before getting into the streaming service (MLB.TV), here’s a brief background of how MLB was formed. In 1876, the National League was formed, and 25 years later in 1901, the American League followed. The two leagues were based in the USA and worked hand-in-hand since 1903 for 97 years, before being merged into a single identity – Major League Baseball.
Even the most traditional organisations in the world need to look at digital because of the undisputed reach of the medium. Keeping that in mind, MLB (Major League Baseball) expanded its offering to launch MLB.TV in August 2002. The first game that was live-streamed was on 26 August between the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers. It was streamed by 30,000 people in 60 countries globally.
In 2012, the service evolved with an initiative called ‘Audio Overlay’ which allowed viewers to replace the audio with the audio feed of the home or away team’s radio feed, or even eliminate commentary to allow the fan to soak in the sounds.
What are they doing?
In the nineteen years since it’s been operational, MLB.TV has had more than 1.5 billion live streams to a total of 3.7 million subscribers.
It allows users to watch every out-of-market game (games that aren’t played in the same city as the viewer) live or on-demand. The games that are on the black-out list, have live-audio feeds, with access to the video of the game approximately 90 minutes after the game ends.
Along with streams to games, MBL.TV also offers documentaries, features and classic games from the league.
To expand its offerings it has launched services like MLB Fantasy and MLB Ballpark (a social media network for fans) which has made subscribers stick to the app beyond just the video streaming.
There have been talks of a new service being launched which will stream local blackout games. If/when that launches, it’s said that MLB.TV will continue to exist who want to stream ‘out of market’ games.
MLB.TV ticks most of the boxes a streaming app requires. It is available across platforms like iOS, Android, Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Playstation and the Xbox among others.
It also has different subscription options which are priced at US$ 129.99 for the full season. It keeps fans glued to the app off-season with content too, which is priced at US$ 24.99. It’s available globally too, to keep the fans tuned in.
So, if you’re working with a sports league in any part of the world, it’s worthwhile to use OTT to make your content available globally. You never know where your next cohort of fans emerges from!
We at Enveu are here to help you launch your sports platform by providing end-to-end technical know-how and white glove service.