clock menu more-arrow no yes

Facebook will stream 20 MLB games for free this season

The new partnership is Facebook’s biggest foray yet into live sports.

Milwaukee Brewers v San Diego Padres Denis Poroy / Getty

Major League Baseball is coming to Facebook.

The two sides announced a new partnership Thursday in which Facebook will livestream 20 MLB games throughout this season for free to its U.S. users. The deal was previously reported, but not made public until today.

The deal means that Facebook will stream one game each Friday for free, starting tomorrow with a game between the Colorado Rockies and the Cincinnati Reds. Facebook says it will stream a “feed from a participating team’s local broadcast rightsholder” each week.

Unlike TV broadcasts, though, these Facebook streams will not include commercials “at the outset,” according to a Facebook spokesperson. Facebook declined to share details about how much it’s paying for the streams, though this same spokesperson did say the company is “investing in the content” when asked if Facebook paid for them.

The deal represents Facebook’s most meaningful push into live sports, which is part of a larger strategy to get more TV-like content onto the network. The social network has streamed a number of other live sporting events in the past, but most have been fringe content like surfing, or pre-Olympics basketball. It’s the same live sports strategy that we’ve seen from Twitter, which also has a deal to stream some MLB games this season.

Facebook also showed interest in the rights to stream “NFL Thursday Night Football” games this fall, but that deal ended up going to Amazon.


This article originally appeared on Recode.net.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for The Weeds

Get our essential policy newsletter delivered Fridays.