Rangers to Leave Bally Sports After 2024

Texas Rangers navigate complex broadcasting rights and financial challenges.

by Nouman Rasool
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Rangers to Leave Bally Sports After 2024
© D-Man Thomas/YouTube

In a pivotal development for sports broadcasting, Bally Sports and its parent company, Diamond Sports Group (DSG), have announced a significant shift in their operations post-2024. The decision, revealed in a recent court filing, indicates that Bally Sports will cease broadcasting baseball after the 2024 season, marking the end of an era in sports telecasting.

This significant move comes as Bally Sports and DSG work to resolve ongoing financial challenges, including navigating through bankruptcy court. The agreement with creditors, pending approval by a judge, outlines a plan to address financial obligations through the 2024 season.

The Texas Rangers, a key player in this saga, are set to regain their broadcast rights following the 2024 season. This allows the team to explore new broadcasting opportunities starting in 2025. The Minnesota Twins, another central team in this narrative, are reportedly set to reclaim their broadcasting rights as early as 2024 due to their contract with Bally and DSG concluding.

This shift impacts several other teams with existing contracts with Bally and DSG, including prominent franchises like the Detroit Tigers, Miami Marlins, Cleveland Guardians, Kansas City Royals, St. Louis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds, Los Angeles Angels, Atlanta Braves, Tampa Bay Rays, and Milwaukee Brewers.

Rangers' Rocky Road

The journey to this juncture has been complex and tumultuous. The Rangers nearly regained their broadcast rights in mid-2023 as DSG and Bally grappled with financial difficulties following their Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.

By August 2023, DSG had fulfilled its financial commitments to the Rangers for the year. The Rangers' involvement in this story dates back to 2010 when they inked a 20-year, $3 billion deal with Fox Sports Southwest, later acquired by DSG and rebranded as Bally Sports Southwest in 2019.

The Rangers were reportedly owed a substantial sum of $111 million in 2023. The financial strain on DSG escalated when they missed a crucial payment to the Rangers in April 2023, prompting the team and Major League Baseball (MLB) to initiate legal action.

A Houston judge ruled in favor of MLB, compelling DSG to fulfill its financial obligations without reduction. Despite these payments, challenges persist for fans in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Viewers subscribing to specific cable and streaming services, including Dish TV, Hulu, and YouTube TV, continue to face limited access due to the absence of agreements with DSG.

This latest development in the Bally Sports saga symbolizes a turning point in sports broadcasting, with potential implications for how fans engage with America's favorite pastime in future years.

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