Wednesday, October 06, 2004

O's channel is risky play

The kind of regional TV network being considered by the Orioles has had mixed results.
By Paul Adams
Baltimore Sun Staff
Originally published October 5, 2004

Picture this, sports fans: The Baltimore Orioles launch a new regional sports channel and treat viewers to unprecedented behind-the-scenes footage of players and coaches before and after games.

And on off-nights, the network airs in-depth player biographies, or perhaps a reality series chronicling the day-to-day life of the team's top slugger. Viewers and advertisers go wild. And Orioles owner Peter G. Angelos makes so much money off the network that he plows more dollars into the team's payroll, helping the Birds to become a world championship team.

That's the utopian vision driving a growing number of professional sports teams to risk tens of millions of dollars to launch their own regional sports networks. Historically, teams have sold television rights to cable providers or local broadcasters, which produce the games and pocket the surplus revenue.

Read the entire article here on the Baltimore Sun website.