Despite a 99-day lockout that delayed the season, Major League Baseball is set to eclipse its 2019 revenue.
“It’s safe to say that we’ll be higher than we were in 2019,” MLB chief revenue officer Noah Garden told Forbes.
- The league earned $10.7 billion in the last pre-pandemic season.
- Garden estimates that league attendance will finish the season at around 95-96% of 2019 levels, blaming the pandemic for reduced crowds earlier this year.
- He also said that this year will see the “most merchandise sold in the history of our sport, both domestically and internationally.”
MLB is celebrating its 20th year of its MLB.tv streaming service, which broadcasts games not covered by local or national channels. Every other major league has followed suit, with the NFL finally joining the fray this year with the launch of NFL+.
Garden predicted that “In the next 20 years, [today’s MLB.tv is] going to look as archaic as what we did 20 years ago.”
This year, MLB linked up with two other streaming services, striking broadcast deals with Apple for $85 million annually for seven years and Peacock on a two-season deal worth $30 million annually.
The league is working to arrange its rights deals to show in-market games on MLB.tv.