YouTube TV Ditches Popular Sports Network Amid Carriage Dispute

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If you’re a baseball fan, we have some bad news regarding your YouTube TV subscription.

The popular live TV streaming service just notified customers that it will no longer be broadcasting MLB Network because it was unable to reach an agreement on carriage fees.

This is the first notable carriage dispute for YouTube TV in many months. Though the streaming service often has made headlines for butting heads with companies like Roku, its latest headlines have been mostly positive for things like new channel additions and gaining the rights to NFL Sunday Ticket.

Let’s take a look at this disagreement and figure out a plan for baseball fans who want to watch MLB Network.

YouTube TV Announces It No Longer Carries MLB Network

In an unexpected email sent to subscribers on Tuesday, January 31, YouTube TV announced that it would be removing MLB Network from the service on that day.

There was no advance warning of the removal, which includes the library of on-demand content that subscribers may have saved from the MLB Network.

YouTube TV indicated that it would “continue conversations” with Major League Baseball “in hopes of restoring their content” on the service, but no timeline was mentioned.

The price of YouTube TV remains $65 per month in spite of this channel removal.

Here’s a look at the full letter that was sent to subscribers:

YouTube TV subscriber letter MLB Network
YouTube TV’s letter to subscribers on January 31, 2023

How Streamers Can Find MLB Network Elsewhere

If you’re a YouTube TV subscriber who was there because of the MLB Network availability, you may be wondering what your alternative streaming options are for the channel.


Unfortunately, the news isn’t great on that front.

YouTube TV, which is one of Team Clark’s top live TV streaming choices in part because of its vast sports channel selection, was the only remaining streaming service that offered the channel on its base-level subscription.

There are other streaming services that offer MLB Network, but they require that you either pay for a sports add-on package or upgrade to a more expensive tier of their subscription model.

Here’s a quick rundown of your options:

Live TV Streaming ServiceMLB Network Availability
YouTube TVNo, removed after January 31 announcement
Hulu + Live TVNo
SlingYes, $51 per month with Blue Package ($40) + Sports Add On ($11)
FuboTVYes, $85 per month with Elite package
DIRECTV STREAMYes, $100 per month with Choice package
VidgoYes, $60 per month with Plus package
Frndly TVNo

You also can see which of these services may pair MLB Network with some of your other favorite channels by using Team Clark’s channel search tool:

Show all channels

Final Thoughts

If you’re a baseball fan who loves YouTube TV, this news comes as both a surprise and a disappointment.

But, don’t lose hope just yet. YouTube TV is known for getting into carriage dispute with channel providers that sometimes results in a public airing of negotiations.

Removing the channel at the end of the existing carriage deal and public announcing the departure may be a tactic to pressure MLB Network into agreeing to a new deal on YouTube TV’s terms.

So, you may want to give this dispute a few weeks to potentially work itself out before you go canceling your subscription.

Does the removal of MLB Network make you less likely to have a YouTube TV subscription? Or does it bother you at all? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the community.

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