The Dodgers appear ready to pull the plug on their 16-year relationship with Fox. Bloomberg reported this morning that Time Warner Cable Inc. won the Dodgers’ local broadcasting rights. The announcement is reportedly “imminent.”
Dodgers games began appearing locally on Fox Sports Prime Ticket in 1997, and their current contract runs through the end of the 2013 season. The two sides failed to agree on an extension during their exclusive negotiating window, leaving the team free to negotiate with TWC or start its own network – a successful format for the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox in recent years.
TWC Sportsnet began broadcasting Lakers games this season as part of a 20-year deal worth an estimated $3 million. The Dodgers’ rights could be in the $6 to $8 million range over 25 years, based on various reports.
Losing the Dodgers would leave Fox Sports West and Prime Ticket (the Dodgers’ home station) with the Angels, Kings, Clippers, Ducks, USC and UCLA.
Some more links:
• The All-Star Game won’t be coming to Dodger Stadium until at least 2017. That was the local takeaway from a report last night that the 2015 All-Star Game will be awarded to Cincinnati’s Great American Ballpark. Since the game alternates between an American and National League city from year to year, that means the Dodgers are at least four years away from hosting a game. Is that enough time for the Dodger Stadium renovations to sway Bud Selig back to Los Angeles? It seems overdue: No major-league city has waited longer to host an ASG. The Reds haven’t hosted the game since 1988; the Dodgers since 1980.
• An early WBC preview: “Relative to the provisional U.S. team, this version of the Dominican squad trails, on average, in hitting (by 0.4 WAR), starting pitching (by 1.0 WAR), and relief pitching (by 0.3 WAR).”
• Yasiel Puig‘s Puerto Rican League team, Mayaguez, is trailing 2-1 in the best-of-seven championship series against Caguas. Puig’s postseason stats: .259/.328/.444, one home run, eight RBIs, 1-for-1 in stolen base attempts.
• By the time he turned 25, he had won a Cy Young Award, an ERA title, and had won 71 major-league games. So yes, Felix Hernandez‘s possible four-year, $100 million extension is of interest to Clayton Kershaw, who turns 25 in March and is seeking a contract extension.
• Lastly, a group of Italians dancing disco-style to an organ-driven cover of “Proud Mary”: