The Book of Mike

"This is no junior college. This is the notorious University of Miami.” -- Marlins starter Dontrelle Willis, after getting knocked around for six runs in 2 1/3 innings by the Canes.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Marlins Television Contract Update

In today’s Herald Barry Jackson shed a little more light on the Marlins newly signed television contract extension.

It’s interesting to note that the new deal puts the team exclusively on cable (about the only games that won’t be are whatever Fox picks up as a Saturday afternoon game of the week). Given that this contract runs for as long as it does, that’s probably largely irrelevant since the few folks who don’t have cable now probably will within the next fifteen years.

What’s more interesting though is that the agreement the Marlins reached with FSN (Fox Sports Net) seems to conflict with the network’s existing arrangement with the Devil Rays. Starting in 2006 FSN is scheduled to broadcast 150 Marlins games and 75 Rays games. Given that more often than not the Marlins and Rays play at exactly the same time and that the season is only 180 days long, there will be a number of conflicts throughout the season regarding which game gets broadcast when (normally each team is broadcast throughout Florida).

Jackson speculates that some games could be moved to Sun Sports (formerly Sunshine) – or maybe another network.

Up to this point, as best I can tell, it seems that the Marlins locked themselves into a 15-year cable television contract in order increase their guaranteed revenue streams as they attempt to gain stadium financing. It also seems that these television revenue streams don’t necessarily have a dedicated broadcast source at this point.

Time will tell how this all works out, but so far it continues to appear to be a dubious deal.


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