Saturday December 9, 2023

MLB, Barstool Sports Discuss Streaming Deal

  • Barstool founder Dave Portnoy said last week his company has had talks with sports leagues.
  • Negotiations center around streaming of midweek MLB games with emphasis on sports betting integration.
Daniel Kucin Jr.-USA TODAY Sports/Design: Alex Brooks
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Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy mentioned last Thursday that the company has had discussions about a broadcast deal with one of the four major sports. It appears those talks were with Major League Baseball. 

MLB and Barstool have had “significant negotiations” toward an agreement to stream midweek games, the New York Post reported on Monday. Barstool would put the games on its platforms with an emphasis on sports betting, giving MLB — which skews older than other major U.S. sports — access to Barstool’s younger, male audience. 

MLB and Barstool did not respond to requests from FOS for comment.

If a deal is hammered out, MLB would have another deal with a gambling company. Penn National Gaming owns 36% of Barstool and the Barstool Sportsbook app is available in five states with five more expected to launch by year’s end. 

  • In July, MLB and DraftKings announced an expansion of their partnership that includes integration of live games into the DraftKings app.
  • BetMGM was MLB’s first official gaming partner — a deal was announced in November 2018. 
  • Penn National announced last week it would acquire Score Media and Gaming, parent company of theScore, for about $2 billion. theScore is one of MLB’s authorized gaming operators. 

The New York Post reported that chances of a deal between MLB and Barstool closing stood at “50-50.”

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