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Cubs, Sinclair Officially Announce New RSN

“Sinclair and the Cubs will launch Marquee in time for opening day of the 2020 baseball season.”

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Back in 2015 we reported that the Chicago Cubs had plans to launch a new regional sports network by the 2020 season. In August we reported that the new network would be a joint venture with Sinclair Broadcast group and would be called Marquee. Today, the team confirmed all of that news in a press release.

Sinclair and the Cubs will launch Marquee in time for opening day of the 2020 baseball season. Not only will it be the TV home of the Chicago Cubs, but Cubs-themed content and other local sports offerings will air on the network as well. The team has entered into a long-term rights agreement with the new network.

“Providing an enhanced experience for our fans is at the heart of everything we do. We are excited to better serve our fans with expanded and exclusive programming showcasing our remarkable players, beloved ballpark and storied past,” said Crane Kenney, President of Business Operations for the Cubs. “Our dedicated ‘Cubs-centric’ network will carry all available Cubs games and feature uncompromising, in-depth and behind-the-scenes coverage.”

The Cubs will end their relationship with NBC Sports Chicago at the conclusion of the 2019 Major League Baseball season.

Sports TV News

Peacock Announces 19 Game 2023 Baseball Schedule

“It all starts on April 23 at 12:05 p.m. as the Colorado Rockies take on the defending N.L. champion Philadelphia Phillies.”

Jordan Bondurant

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MLB games are returning to Peacock in 2023. NBC announced its full schedule of Sunday matinee games on Tuesday.

It all starts on April 23 at 12:05 p.m. as the Colorado Rockies take on the defending N.L. champion Philadelphia Phillies.

Peacock will carry all 19 games this year. The game on May 7, an 11:35 a.m. first pitch, features the Baltimore Orioles and the Atlanta Braves and will also be simulcast on NBC.

As was the case for the first year of this deal in 2022, the Peacock games will be the only MLB action until 1:35 p.m.

Games will air on Peacock through September 3. NBC has not announced its broadcast team for these games.

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Sports TV News

PGA Tour Expects Mic’d Players To Be Common For 2023 TV Broadcasts

“This doesn’t need to be a walk and talk like I did. But we can make it what you want it to be.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Following the success with Max Homa last weekend, the PGA Tour is planning to mic a player up this weekend at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

According to Sports Business Journal, the Tour is considering micing up a player on either the 14th or 18th hole at Pebble Beach.

“The point of this is that if you want it to just be, they have an air pod on your caddie and they ask him one question, he could elaborate on something,” Homa said in an interview on the podcast No Laying Up. “That would be an improvement. This doesn’t need to be a walk and talk like I did. But we can make it what you want it to be.”

Homa added that he appreciated that the questions he was asked while taking part in the segment were solely on the task at hand and tackling the hole he was on.

“It wasn’t about how it is being a dad, how it is being in contention, it’s about golf,” he said. “This hole. That’s what we wanted it to be.”

CBS received positive reviews for debuting the new segment in their season debut at Torrey Pines last week.

It will be interesting to see if having players mic’d up for a segment will carry into NBC coverage or if it remains exclusively CBS. Have to think that in April at The Masters, if CBS keeps with it, the segment has the potential to be pretty compelling especially if the interview is with a player in contention or even leading.

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Sports TV News

ABC Scores Most Watched NBA Saturday Primetime Game In 4 Years

“The game drew 3.7 million viewers.”

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The Boston Celtics beat the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday night. While the game’s controversial finish left LeBron James and Patrick Beverly upset, executives at the Walt Disney Company had nothing but smiles thanks to the performance of ABC.

The game drew 3.7 million viewers. That means the Celtics’ win is the most-watched game in the ABC Saturday night prime-time window in the last four years. A February 2019 game between the Lakers and Golden State Warriors drew 4.1 million.

Boston also delivered the highest-rated game of the NBA season so far outside of the league’s stacked Christmas Day slate.

NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC is experiencing a nice uptick in viewership this season. Through the weekend, the Saturday night games are averaging over 3.4 million viewers according to an ESPN press release.

That number represents a 16% jump from last season. The edition of NBA Countdown that airs before the Saturday night game is having a good season as well. It’s average audience is up 3% to just under 1.5 million.

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