Major League Baseball took control of another MLB team’s television rights on Tuesday, bringing the Arizona Diamondbacks under the league’s broadcast umbrella after the original rights holder failed to make its required payment to the club earlier this month.
Diamond Sports Group, parent company of Bally Sports Arizona, declared bankruptcy in March. The Diamondbacks are one of several MLB teams whose TV rights could be impacted by Diamond Sports’ financial troubles. Earlier this season, MLB took over the production and distribution of San Diego Padres broadcasts.
According to a news release from the Diamondbacks, MLB will give fans the ability to watch games on television or stream digitally — and will eliminate the need for local blackouts of games previously distributed on Bally Sports Arizona.
In a statement emailed to USA TODAY Sports, a Diamond Sports Group spokesperson called its contract with the Diamondbacks “not aligned with Diamond’s long-term plans.”
Where can Diamondbacks games be seen on TV and online?
MLB says the new arrangement will expand the availability of D’backs games in the team’s home market from roughly 930,000 homes to 5.6 million. Games can be seen on Channel 4 in Phoenix, Channel 7 in Tucson and on the area’s major cable and satellite providers.
MLB will also give D’backs fans the opportunity to stream games on MLB.TV that’s separate from the nationwide out-of-market streaming package.
Diamondbacks primary TV broadcasters Steve Berthiaume and Bob Brenly will continue to serve in their existing roles.
Could other MLB teams follow Padres, Diamondbacks?
At the start of the 2023 season, Diamond Sports Group owned the broadcast rights for 14 MLB teams as part of its Bally Sports regional networks.
When the company failed to make its required payments to those clubs, MLB had the ability to terminate each of those agreements and take over the broadcasts itself. That’s what happened on May 31, when MLB first assumed control over San Diego Padres games.
“We are continuing to broadcast games for all other teams under contract without disruption and we anticipate making all rights payments to the remainder of the MLB teams in our portfolio through the end of this season,” the DSG spokesperson added in the statement to USA TODAY Sports.
A bankruptcy judge last month ruled Diamond Sports must make full payments to four MLB teams — the Diamondbacks, Cleveland Guardians, Texas Rangers and Minnesota Twins — to continue carrying their games.
Other MLB clubs under the Diamond Sports Group include:
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: MLB assumes control over Diamondbacks TV broadcasts
Source: Yahoo Sports