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Terry Expert Identifies Challenges Facing Major League Baseball

Nathaniel Grow, an Assistant Professor of Legal Studies at the Terry College of Business and a leading expert in professional sport law, was asked to weigh in on challenges facing Major League Baseball (MLB) by WalletHub.

Grow identifies the transition from a television broadcasting model to a digital streaming model as a major challenge that MLB faces. While Grow identifies MLB as an industry leader in online streaming video, he also observes that MLB still caters to regional sports networks by forcing local fans to purchase a cable package to see their team play instead of streaming local games over the internet. MLB fans have been pushing the organization to make all MLB games available to stream online, but the regional networks have strongly pushed back against this proposal. Grow observes: “If MLB can’t find a suitable solution to this problem soon, it may find that it’s hand will be forced, as a class action lawsuit challenging these practices is currently working its way through the courts, with a trial likely sometime in the next couple years. It will be interesting to see how this issue plays out.”

The full interview is available online.

Professor Grow’s research focuses on U.S. patent law and the application of federal labor laws and antitrust law to the professional sports industry. He is the author of “Baseball on Trial: The Origin of Baseball’s Antitrust Exemption”, a history of the United States Supreme Court case Federal Baseball Club of Baltimore v. National League which gave rise to baseball’s antitrust exemption. Grow’s work has been accepted for publication by the Washington & Lee Law Review, the U.C. Davis Law Review, and the American Business Law Journal.

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