Apple has entered talks with Major League Baseball about a possible deal to carry MLB games next season, says a report by The New York Post.
The talks are for weekday national games that ESPN recently relinquished. ESPN will no longer have regular Monday and Wednesday games. The ESPN games were not exclusive in local markets. It is unclear at this point if Apple would be allowed to wall off these select games from regional sports network coverage or not. Discussions have also been held with Barstool Sports and Amazon, but no deal was reached.
Making such a deal would give Apple a leg up on establishing Apple TV+ as a sports content destination. Currently, Apple TV+ content is limited to movies and TV series.
Apple streaming rival Amazon Prime has established itself in the sports arena, and it will become the exclusive home of NFL “Thursday Night Football” in the fall. Amazon reportedly paid over $1 billion for the rights.
While Apple currently doesn’t have a deal with any sports leagues, its TV app integrates with apps that provide access to live sports. Users can select their favorite team in the TV app, and the app will suggest streaming games in the app that streams the team’s games.