Facebook and Major League Baseball are expanding on the live broadcast deal they kicked off last year, promising a 25-game package of weekday MLB contests.
The games will be exclusive to Facebook Watch and will be distributed globally through the MLB Live show page.
The games will be available across devices including mobile phones and connected TVs and will offer viewers some interactivity options. MLB Network said it will introduce new “in-game production elements specially designed for intuitively watching, sharing and interacting on Facebook.” More information about broadcast talent and social integrations is forthcoming.
“We're excited to extend our partnership with Major League Baseball to make Facebook Watch a home for exclusive, live games every week this season,” said Dan Reed, Facebook’s head of global sports partnerships, in a statement. “Community and conversation are central to both baseball and Facebook, and MLB Network’s innovative broadcasts will bring these interactive and social elements of the game to life to fans around the world in new ways on our platform.”
The first game on Facebook this season will be an April 4 afternoon game between the Philadelphia Phillies and New York Mets.
As part of the new deal, MLB will produce and distribute on Facebook Watch on-demand highlight packages for every regular season game as well as MLB club-specific weekly recap packages for all 30 MLB teams.
Last season, MLB and Facebook partnered to live stream 20 games weekly on Friday nights as national simulcasts.