Facebook Wins Exclusive Rights to Broadcast 25 MLB Games This Season

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 9, 2018

San Diego Padres left fielder Allen Cordoba passes a logo for Play Ball, an initiative from Major League Baseball and USA Baseball, during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies Saturday, June 3, 2017, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Gregory Bull/Associated Press

Get ready to watch some baseball on your Facebook.

According to Scott Soshnick, the social media platform was awarded exclusive rights to broadcast 25 Major League Baseball afternoon games during the 2018 campaign. Soshnick noted the games will primarily be on Wednesdays, starting with the April 4 contest between the New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies.

Soshnick noted it is the first time one of the major United States sports leagues gave exclusive broadcasting rights for games to a social network.

This is "part of the next great leap," consultant Lee H. Berke said, per Soshnick. 

Soshnick pointed out sports are nothing new for Facebook, which also reached a deal last year with Fox Sports to stream UEFA Champions League games and earned the rights to stream 47 men's college basketball games this year.

Facebook will be involved with an MLB season that starts March 29 and figures to feature plenty of tight races leading into October.

The Houston Astros returned the same core from last year's World Series-winning squad and added Gerrit Cole in the offseason. However, they will have to deal with the New York Yankees in the American League after the Bronx Bombers added 2017 National League MVP Giancarlo Stanton to a lineup already featuring Aaron Judge.

In the Senior Circuit, the Chicago Cubs added Yu Darvish and Brandon Morrow after they each helped the Los Angeles Dodgers reach last year's Fall Classic. Those two teams could be headed for a third straight meeting in the National League Championship Series, and those roster moves could add another layer of intrigue.

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