The well-known and popular sports media and betting company, Barstool Sports, is said to be discussing a deal to livestream Major League Baseball games for the 2022 season. This news was first reported by the New York Post and later confirmed by Variety.

The MLB has national broadcast deals with Walt Disney Co, AT&T, and Fox Corp. They also recently signed a new agreement with ESPN. However, this deal only involves 30 regular-season games on TV, a significant reduction from the around 90 games under the previous deal. In addition, ESPN will be keeping its exclusive rights to “Sunday Night Baseball” but stepping away from weekday broadcasts. As a result, an opportunity has opened up for new broadcasters to step in to fill the gap.

According to the New York Post, Barstool plans on launching an MLB broadcast that focuses on in-game gambling.

However, the Post also notes that several entities are interested in gaining the rights to livestream MLB games, but the MLB has so far declined to comment. Variety has reported that YouTube is among the bidders for the streaming rights. YouTube has an existing deal for the 2021 regular season to stream 21 games for free. This is the third consecutive year that YouTube has been consigned to livestream the league’s games.

Also rumored to be in the running for livestreaming rights is NBC-owned Peacock. Peacock was launched in 2020 and currently serves as an overflow outlet for NBC Sports programming. However, with the planned discontinuation of NBCSN by the end of 2021, it’s believed that Peacock will subsume its programming. Consequently, Peacock may become an alternative to Barstool Sports.


Barstool Sports began as a sports blog in 2003 but has since diversified, expanding its business into podcasts, merchandise, and sports betting with its gambling and wagering site, Barstool bets. Founded by David Portnoy, the company is primarily supported by The Chemin Group and Penn National Gaming.

In July of this year, Barstool announced that it had signed an agreement to be the broadcast partner and main sponsor of college football’s Arizona Bowl. The Arizona Bowl previously aired on CBS. Barstool CEO Erika Nardini has been quoted as saying that she believes this partnership provides the opportunity to re-do traditional broadcasting and sponsorship in a way that will bring in new fans. Furthermore, Barstool plans on covering the game in a way that is unique to its brand.

This comment is likely a reference to Barstool’s bold form of sports commentary, which some have deemed controversial. Nonetheless, Barstool has a sizeable fanbase that bodes well for MLB viewership should they gain the livestreaming rights. Additionally, the MLB’s interest in Barstool signifies that it’s looking for a younger audience and a desire to get involved in the gambling side of things.

If Barstool is successful in its bid, it’s expected that they will deliver MLB games through several channels, including their website and social media accounts. Additionally, if the deal is non-exclusive, Barstool won’t have to handle the production. Instead, it can take feeds from regional sports networks and then produce its own broadcast that’s more gambling-focused.