Media conglomerate Sinclar Broadcast Group has launched their long-awaited sports streaming service, Bally Sports Plus. June 23rd represents a “soft-launch” in five markets that carry Major League Baseball games through their regional Bally Sports Networks.
The markets available at launch are:
- Kansas City (Kansas City Royals)
- Detroit (Detroit Tigers)
- Miami (Miami Marlins)
- Milwaukee (Milwaukee Brewers)
- Tampa Bay (Tampa Bay Rays)
The service costs $19.99 a month or $189.99 a year and does not require a cable or satellite subscription. They also offer NBA and NHL games in select cities.
For cord-cutters this provides a new option to watch MLB games in cities where Bally Sports has the exclusive broadcast rights. Previously, Regional Sports Networks from Bally Sports could only be watched through cable, satellite, or DIRECTV's streaming service, DIRECTV Stream.
To compare, a subscription to DIRECTV Stream’s Choice Plan, which includes Bally Sports affiliates, costs $89.99 per month. For customers that are primarily interested in getting access to live baseball this provides a much cheaper alternative.
Additional cities are expected to be added after MLB’s All-Star game in July. Subscribers can access Bally Sports Plus through the Bally Sports app. Initially it will be available on mobile devices (Apple and Android), Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV. Support for Roku will be added soon as well.
Future plans for Bally Sports subscribers include the ability to play fantasy games, get advanced stats, as well as buy tickets and merchandise.
Bally Sports is the second Regional Sports Network to offer a streaming service. Earlier this month, NESN launched NESN 360, a streaming service with access to live Red Sox and Bruins games for $29.99 a month.