Quick Notes: Major League Baseball announces the hire of Billy Chambers as EVP/Local Media
MLB has made a move it hopes will help navigate the uncertain future of regional sports networks with hiring of Billy Chambers as EVP/Local Media
In a press release, Major League Baseball announced Thursday that the league had hired Billy Chambers to fill the newly created position of Executive Vice President of Local Media. The job creation is meaningful as the league confronts a murky future for regional sports networks, which broadcast most games in local markets.
The hire of Chambers is a clear sign that MLB has decided it needs to take a more active role in producing and distributing its games. Baseball execs believe it will gain control over many of those rights controlled by Diamond Sports, which has been mired in financial troubles and installed former ESPN and NBC Sports exec David Preschlack as CEO.
Major League Baseball expects it will get control of other rights -- ones held by Comcast and Warner Bros. Discovery -- soon after.
MLB has already started looking into creating a national product that would combine its local rights with its out-of-market Extra Innings package -- an effort that would do away with blackouts. Major League Baseball has already started moving in that direction by broadcasting certain Friday night baseball games on Apple TV and Sunday Morning games on NBC's streaming service: Peacock.
Billy Chambers is considered one of the country’s most experienced RSN executives and was an executive at Fox Sports Network.