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Baseball, ESPN extend TV contract

NEW YORK – A person with knowledge of the deal says Major League Baseball and ESPN have extended their TV contract through 2021.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity Tuesday because the official announcement had not yet been made. MLB and the network scheduled a conference call for Tuesday afternoon.

The deal combines rights for TV, radio, digital and international that had been separate.

The new single contract adds new rights to air a wild-card game, along with additional rights to highlights and digital content. It also gives the network more flexibility to show games involving popular teams.

The previous contracts were worth close to $360 million a year combined. The new combined deal with the additional rights will be worth about $700 million a year during an eight-year period.

The extension was first reported by SportsBusiness Daily.