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ESPN Reportedly Interested in Derek Jeter For a Broadcasting Gig

What kind of role could Jeter have with ESPN if he were to join the network? The obvious job would appear to be the analyst position on Sunday Night Baseball.

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Major League Baseball’s lockout didn’t take all of the sport’s headlines on Monday. Baseball’s other big story was Derek Jeter stepping down as CEO of the Miami Marlins. Jeter also gave up his ownership share of the club, a four percent stake believed to be worth approximately $45 million.

The obvious question is what’s next for Jeter. According to Front Office Sports’ Michael McCarthy, ESPN would like to speak with him about a television opportunity. No overtures have yet been made, but McCarthy reports that the network would love to go into business with him, presumably as an analyst.

Additionally, ESPN president Jimmy Pitaro is a big New York Yankees fan, which is apparently fueling speculation that he’d love to add The Captain to the network’s roster.

If so, Pitaro might want to have a word with Stephen A. Smith about messaging after the First Take host said on Monday’s show that he’d like to see Jeter return to the Yankees in some capacity.

Speaking of The Captain, that’s the title of an upcoming six-part docuseries chronicling Jeter’s Hall of Fame career with the Yankees that includes five World Series championships and 3,465 hits. So there’s already a working relationship of sorts between Jeter and ESPN.

What kind of role could Jeter have with ESPN if he were to join the network? The obvious job would appear to be the analyst position on Sunday Night Baseball.

But ESPN just overhauled its SNF crew with Karl Ravech calling play-by-play alongside analysts David Cone and Eduardo Perez. Would the network blow up its new team after one season (a season that hasn’t even happened yet)? Not to mention that two former Yankees in the booth probably wouldn’t be popular.

Even adding him for occasional appearances, as was suggested by one of McCarthy’s sources, seems problematic. Sure, it would draw attention (and potential viewers), but a three-man booth is crowded enough as it is.

McCarthy raises another possibility that Jeter could headline an alternate Sunday Night Baseball broadcast. Jeter’s former teammate Alex Rodriguez and Yankees broadcaster Michael Kay are already doing a “Kay-Rod” alternate SNF broadcast, but plans are for the two to only work eight of the 25 games ESPN will broadcast on Sunday nights.

That presumably leaves room for another telecast headlined by Jeter. (Some Yankees fans might also take delight in Jeter possibly upstaging and taking viewers’ affection away from A-Rod.)

All of this is speculation, of course. Jeter just left the Marlins and there’s been no indication that he’s interested in broadcasting. But if he is, ESPN is apparently waiting to add Jeter to a growing number of star personalities that includes Peyton and Eli Manning and, very soon, Troy Aikman.

Sports TV News

The NFL Still Considering Multiple Offers For Sunday Ticket

The NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has not bid for the package but has stated it is willing to partner with the new rightsholder for a potential deal.

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Sunday Ticket Negotiations

DirecTV currently has the rights to Sunday Ticket. That deal expires at the end of this upcoming football season. The NFL is expected to make a boatload of cash when they decide which media organization gets the next rights to the package. The only question is… who will that be?

Alex Sherman of CNBC reports that the NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has decided not bid for the package. However, they are interested in partnering with the new rightsholder for a potential deal. DirecTV knows that Sunday Ticket is a staple in bars and restaurants and is interested in maintaining those relationships.

Outside of the bar/restaurant industry, success has been limited for the satellite provider with the football package. Fewer than two million subscribers signed up for Sunday Ticket each year which made the package a money-loser for the satellite TV provider.

According to the report, the NFL wants more than $2 billion for the rights and a stake in NFL Media, which is being packaged with Sunday Ticket. Also on the table is the NFL’s mobile rights. The league’s previous mobile agreement with Verizon has ended.

An interesting piece of the negotiations is Sunday Ticket price. According to the report, a buyer would have limited flexibility on pricing. The NFL signed contracts with CBS and Fox and within the framework of those deals, language mandates Sunday Ticket have a premium price. That’s to prevent loss of viewers from the networks that feature local market Sunday afternoon games. So essentially, the price is the price for the consumer.

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Sports TV News

F1 Renews With ESPN For U.S. Media Rights

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

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F1 ESPN

The racing series F1 has decided to stick with ESPN through 2025.

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

The reported value of the three-year contract is set to pay F1 $75-90M per year for the U.S. media rights. Amazon had offered to pay roughly $100M per year, with the right to sublicense to a linear broadcast network. Comcast’s offer was similar to ESPN’s in terms of value and the structure. They also wanted to put select races on it’s streaming service, Peacock.

Netflix was in on the negotiations, as well. The makers of Drive to Survive, the streaming series that many credit with the sport’s explosion in popularity in recent years, wasn’t close on on their financial offer. Also, it seems F1 executives were not ready to put all of its races on a streaming service just yet.

Currently, F1 receives $5M per year for ESPN to broadcast it’s races. ESPN has grabbed about 1.0 million viewers per race. That makes F1 a more than viable option for the network to invest into again. ESPN will be able to put a small number of races on its ESPN+ streaming service exclusively. The vast majority being on ABC or ESPN.

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Skip Bayless Says He And Stephen A. Smith ‘Sorted Out’ Their Disagreement

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

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Skip Bayless

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were locked in a war of words last week following the First Take host’s appearance on JJ Redick’s Old Man and the Three podcast.

The origins of their partnership were discussed and Bayless admitted he did not like the way Smith characterized the state of First Take before he arrived on set. Smith insisted that Bayless simply misunderstood what he meant by saying that he was told the show needed him.

Over the weekend, Skip Bayless says he and Stephen A. Smith got together at the Bayless home in California to talk things out in private.

“He was in LA, he came over, we sat by the pool,” he said on the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show. “It wasn’t the easiest conversation for a while, but we slowly but surely sorted it out. We got through it, and we have been through so much together.”

Bayless reiterated that he considers Smith a brother. They love each other. That doesn’t mean they are always going to remember events the same way or see eye-to-eye all the time.

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

Fighting doesn’t mean the relationship is fractured. In fact, Skip Bayless was adamant that he remains closer to Smith than he is to most people in his life.

“I don’t trust easily because of the way I was raised, but I do trust Stephen Anthony Smith. Trust him with my life. Always have and always will. I trust he will always be there for me, and you better believe I will always be there for him.”

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