The Guggenheim Group must renegotiate the Time Warner TV deal!
With the start of the 2016 MLB season, we enter the third consecutive year of Dodger baseball available only to Time Warner and Charter TV subscribers. That means an estimated 70% of Dodger fans are not able to see games on TV. To add insult to injury, the clock is ticking toward the last game of the greatest announcer in all of sports. This is Vin Scully’s 67th season announcing Dodgers games. It’s also his last.
In 2014 the Guggenheim Group, which now owns the Dodgers, made an $8.35 billion deal with Time Warner Cable for the rights to broadcast Dodger games for the next 25 years. Time Warner attempted to sell their new Dodgers channel to TV providers for roughly $5 per subscriber per month (For comparison purposes, the Lakers channel costs providers $4 per subscriber per month). When TV providers like DirecTV, Dish Network and AT&T declined the deal, Time Warner offered a reduced price point for an introductory period but gave no details on how high the price would be raised. TV providers again declined.
For more information on the details of the Dodgers/Time Warner TV deal, listen to Episode 8 of Guys In Shorts Sports LA, which incidentally was the springboard for this petition.
Simply put, Time Warner overvalued the Dodgers TV rights and overpaid. Now they are stuck with a product they cannot sell, at the price they need in order to recoup their money. For that, Time Warner is to blame.
However, at what point does it become the Guggenheim Group’s responsibility to step in and preserve Dodger baseball?
The ONLY option for a resolution to this in the foreseeable future lies in the hands of the Dodgers.
While the Dodgers might not be feeling the effects of this deal now, the long term ramifications could be catastrophic. Three seasons without Dodger baseball available on TV means three years that the next generation of Dodgers fans are finding other things to watch and different teams to follow.
We at Guys In Shorts Sports LA believe the time for Dodgers ownership to step in and fix this is NOW.
When the Guggenheim Group purchased the Dodgers, they did not just buy a new investment for their portfolio. They purchased the responsibility to lead a respected baseball franchise, steeped in over 130 years of history towards their next dynasty. They purchased a connection directly to the hearts of every single member of one of the most devoted fan bases in all of sports.
$8.35 billion dollars is not worth sacrificing the preservation of Dodger baseball. The Guggenheim Group is responsible for righting this wrong and fixing Time Warner’s mistake, not because they “have” to do it, but because they have the “responsibility” to do it.
Please sign this petition and let your voice be heard by the entire Dodgers organization. The TV deal must be renegotiated and it must happen NOW, before it’s too late. Do not deprive Dodger fans their last opportunity to hear Dodger baseball at its very best. If ever there was a voice that deserved to be heard, it’s Vin Scully’s… Make your voice heard so we can hear his.