YouTube’s skinny bundle has added the MLB Network just in time for the upcoming baseball season, the two companies announced on Thursday.
The addition comes as YouTube aims to expand its offerings and add more sports content to its traditional TV alternative. The company recently announced that it would raise the monthly fee for YouTube TV from $35 to $40, following the addition of Turner networks including TNT, CNN and TBS, with NBA TV to follow.
Thursday’s MLB Network launch is tied to a renewed partnership deal between the two companies, which will see YouTube TV serve as a sponsor for the next two World Series, after first sponsoring the 2017 World Series,
The partnership has also been expand to include the rest of the season and encompasses television ads featuring live footage, six-second spots with current MLB players on YouTube and TV, baseball content from YouTube’s creators, and player support across social media.
“YouTube brought tremendous creativity, marketing energy and innovation to the most exciting part of our year, the Postseason and World Series,” said Noah Garden, MLB Executive Vice President, Commerce. “Their engagement with our young fans, rising stars and Clubs showed that YouTube TV is a natural partner for our sport and we’re proud to build on this groundbreaking relationship. And with the addition of MLB Network and the upcoming launch of MLB.tv on the platform, our fans’ options to consume baseball continue to grow.”
“Our historic partnership with MLB was a first of its kind. From live programming morphing into a YouTube TV spot, to prominent in-stadium placements, our innovative partnership allowed us to build awareness for YouTube TV and have a voice during one of the biggest live sporting events of the year,” said Angela Courtin, Global Head of YouTube TV & Originals Marketing. “MLB has been a great long-term partner and we are excited to renew our World Series partnership as well as play a role in games throughout the season with the inaugural First Pitch sponsorship, bringing more ways for fans to enjoy their favorite teams cable-free with YouTube TV.”