Dodgers at Rockies, 5:40PM PT, TV: SPNLA
Roberto Hernandez will start for the Dodgers, hoping he can get his groove back. In his last four starts he’s 1-3 with a 6.38 ERA. The Rockies counter with Christian Bergman, who’ll make his eighth big league start. He’s 2-3 with a 4.89 ERA, but his last two starts have been quality ones.
It’s looking like Carlos Frias will make the Wednesday start against the Rockies in place of Hyun-Jin Ryu. Ryu’s having an MRI today, and that result may determine when or if he pitches again this season. With that in doubt, Don Mattingly says it’s likely the Dodgers will add a pitcher to the roster.
In good news for Los Angeles Dodgers fans who want to see the team on TV, the last six games of the season will be shown on an independent station. Time Warner
said Monday that it has reached a deal with KDOC, which is carried by every cable, satellite and telco provider in Southern California and can be received over the air with an antenna.
Time Warner Cable chief operating officer Dinni Jain says the company will continue to work on long-term agreements with other providers during the offseason to carry SportsNet LA, which televises Dodgers games.
Uh-huh. If you couldn’t get a deal done during the season while the games were being played, why do you think you’ll be able to when there’s no product on your network that fans desperately want to see?
It’s the fiftieth game of the 2014 season already? Oy!
Dodgers at Phillies, 12:05AM PT, TV: SPNLA
Dan Haren has done better for the Dodgers than I think most fans expected; obviously the front office knew more than we did. He’s 5-2 with a 3.18 ERA and has given the team at least five innings in each of his nine starts.
The Phillies counter with 25-year-old right-handed David Buchanan, who’s taking the place of Cliff Lee (phew! Got past him this time!), who’s on the shelf with a left elbow strain. This will be Buchanan’s major league debut. If any of you went to Georgia State, he’s a fellow Panther. This will be the first time a former GSU attendee has ever started in the big leagues.
Since it’s the 50th game, how are the negotiations between TWC and the cable carriers in LA going? Not well
There’s a certain irony in this story appearing on ESPN.com; according to a 2013 article by Patrick Hruby at Sports on Earth
ESPN’s monthly affiliate fee is widely expected to rise from $5-plus to more than $7 by the end of the decade. (By contrast, cable’s most-watched network, USA, reportedly charges $0.68.)
If the facts weren’t so clear, one might say to ESPN “aren’t you the pot calling the kettle black?”
Anyway, things aren’t looking good for the average Dodger fan in Southern California who wants to see his or her team on the tube.
It’s with Time-Warner, and terms won’t be announced till Thursday.
The Dodgers have agreed with Time Warner Cable on a new television contract that will provide the team with a channel of its own, according to two people familiar with the deal but not authorized to discuss it.
Time Warner Cable now has secured the television rights to the two most popular teams in Los Angeles — the Dodgers and the Lakers — within two years.
The Dodgers’ deal is expected to be finalized and announced Thursday. The team has not yet submitted the deal to Major League Baseball for approval, but the control of the channel is expected to rest with the Dodgers’ owners rather than with Time Warner.
Presumably it pays the team enough to cover its payroll.
In other equally welcome news, Sandy Koufax will return to Spring Training to work with the Dodgers’ pitchers.
Update: The TV deal has now been confirmed. There may be some differences with MLB as to how much of the money the Dodgers receive is subject to revenue sharing:
The new ownership group, which bought the team out of bankruptcy court in April 2012 for a record $2.1 billion, said it has created a company called American Media Productions that will start broadcasting Dodgers games in 2014 on a channel called SportsNet LA. Time Warner Cable, the largest carrier in the area, will be the network’s first distributor.
Although terms were not disclosed, the SportsBusiness Journal calls it a 25-year deal worth $7 billion.
“We concluded last year that the best way to give our fans what they want — more content and more Dodger baseball — was to launch our own network,” Dodgers chairman Mark Walter said in a statement. “The creation of AMP will provide substantial financial resources over the coming years for the Dodgers to build on their storied legacy and bring a world championship home to Los Angeles.”
The deal is subject to approval by Major League Baseball, and one baseball source privy to the negotiations told ESPN.com the team and the league could very well butt heads regarding exactly how much of the deal will be shared with other teams.
The other question yet to be answered is “how big a carriage fee will Time Warner pay to AMP for the rights to show the Dodgers’ games and other content and how much will Time Warner turn around and charge its mostly-captive subscribers?”