A new year is once again upon us, and with it comes new seasons for television and sports. In just a few short months, the boys of summer will be back in full swing and millions of people will be rooted in front of their TVs, laptops and tablets or smartphones, watching Americas favorite pastime—Baseball! While many Americans will enjoy the thrill of the game at the ballpark eating a hot dog and drinking beer, many will be watching at home, and MLB.TV will be the venue of choice.
There is one caveat to MLB.TV—blackouts. Local television stations reserve the right to blackout the broadcasting of the local team for whatever reason they choose. The Major League Baseball Association also blacks out broadcasting many games from viewing overseas and in Canada. Americans and others, who enjoy the games, are left in the ‘dark’ when these blackouts occur. In this article, we will show you how to bypass MLB TV blackouts and how to watch MLB games online free.
Why the Blackout?
There are two reasons why the MLB has blackouts of the games. One has to so with local versus national broadcasting ratings, and the other has to do with location.
- Ratings- Local television networks have priority to broadcast their local team games over the national games. A team, which is playing locally at the same time as another team that is broadcast nationally, will air locally over the national team.
- National networks will often broadcast local games that must be played on the “usual” games times due to weather conditions. For example, The Florida Marlins, Atlanta Braves, and Texas Rangers will air later night games due to the temperature or weather in Georgia, Florida and Texas. These games will not only be allowed to play outside the window but also televised locally as well due to the extreme heat that and afternoon game would incur (and believe me, I live in Florida. The temperature in Miami can reach into the 100’s F in the middle of the day in summer).
Mostly the blackouts are about ratings and money. When viewers are encouraged to watch another game instead of their local team on their local station, the ratings for the national station soar. There are other reasons for blackouts as well. One is geolocation. Many games are not aired overseas, especially to Guam and the US Virgin Islands. Canada is also blacked out from many MLB games particularly in the national station level. So what can you do if you want to watch an MLB game sin Canada and can’t?
Free Online sites
Getting a subscription to MLB.TV is one sure way to get all of the games you want for your team. However, there are blackouts and restrictions. You could follow the psychotic blackout schedule that reads like a racing forum, or you could try a free online streaming site to watch MLB games online free.
Many of these sites offer a search engine to other sites that you either have to pay for, or that only show one game at a time. If you don’t mind the fee or don’t mind the exhaustive search then, these sites will be an option to try.
Another way to bypass MLB TV blackouts is to use a VPN or Proxy. A VPN or Virtual Private Network is a network of servers that encrypt your IP address and data and send it through a secure ‘tunnel’, making you virtually invisible to the Internet. No one can detect where you’re from or who you are through a VPN. VPN is essential if you want to watch MLB online.
Through VPN, you can watch MLB games from anywhere and bypass MLB TV blackouts. Through VPN, you will appear online from another country, thereby making the local broadcast games that are blacked out online, available to you. As long as the country you select when setting your VPN is not the US, Guam, the US Virgin Islands or Canada, you can watch any game online at any time.
There currently is no free trial of MLB.TV so watching MLB.TV on a free trial is not an option. Be aware that the blackouts and restrictions can and do change as games are canceled due to the weather or other unforeseeable conditions.
Check with MLB.tv for the blackout schedule regularly to ensure that your team isn’t blackout out because the game has been canceled. With a little detective work and a little know-how, you can learn how to get around MLB TV blackout with ease.