As we’ve discussed several times, the MLB Extra Innings package is in grave “danger” of being a Direct TV exclusive. There has been a lot of speculation as to how the cable companies would respond to the opportunity to match Direct TV’s terms for carrying the package.

I think I just learned part of their strategy. In today’s mail was a letter from Cox Communications (my cable and internet provider), offering me a free subscription to the MLB.TV out-of-market package (an $89.95 value). (A copy is after the jump). I’d heard rumblings that Comcast may buy and distribute discounted, bulk subscriptions to MLB.tv earlier in the week, but was definitely surprised to see the offer from Cox in my mailbox so soon.

I guess the idea is to keep me from switching over the Direct TV, and I certainly appreciate the gesture. I do find it interesting that Cox figures it’s cheaper to pay MLB $90 per subscriber (or at least $90 per prior Extra Innings subscriber) AND give up the profits from future Extra Innings subscriptions than to carry the MLB Channel on the basic cable tier. It’s especially interesting, given that (according to the letter), Cox is still “actively negotiating” to carry the Extra Innings package.

In any event, I’ll be taking them up on the offer – my only question is whether I can still get $90 off the upgraded MLB.tv package with better resolution.

The letter is after the jump.

letter

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2 Responses

  1. Mr. Redlegs

    So Chris, as we are to understand this . . . you have Cox high-speed Internet and as a result of the Extra Innings quarrel the cable company is willing to pay for your MLB.TV, which you will watch on your computer for free as part of a rebate?

    Wow, very interesting. There’s a heckuva news story here if other cable companies follow this lead.

    Thanks for including the letter!

  2. Chris

    That’s how I read it, too. The only other important facts are that (1) I also get cable from Cox and (2) have subscribed to Extra Innings through them for 5-6 years now. I’ll have to ask my neighbors to see if everyone’s getting the deal.