Tonight is a rare chance for many non-Time-Warner-having Angelenos. Dodger fans will see superstars like Yaisel Puig and Clayton Kershaw live on their regular TV channels for today's MLB All-Star Game.
Its rare because the All Star Game is broadcast on Fox, whereas the Dodgers can be seen only for Time Warner Cable subscribers. But what are the chances of being able to see an actual Dodgers game on TV when they come back from the break?
KPCC's Ben Bergman has been reporting on the standoff between DirecTV and Time Warner for months and talks to A Martinez about the latest.
What's behind the dispute with the Dodgers channel.
This is the first year at least Dodger games aren't airing on free over the air TV. The Dodgers signed an $8 billion-plus contract with Time Warner cable to start their own regional sports network.
But not one major distributor has picked up the channel. They complain Time Warner is asking for too much money.
Only the 30 percent or so of the L.A. market that are Time Warner customers get to see Dodger games. In fact so few people are watching games on TV that it's not unusual for more fans to be watching in person at Dodger Stadium than at home.
The main antagonist of Time Warner is DirecTV, because every other provider — like Dish and Charter — is waiting until DirecTV makes a deal.
So is any closer to happening?
Unfortunately not. It's been weeks since Time Warner has had any negotiations with DirecTV and they seem to be as far apart as ever, remember that Time Warner has an incentive to make things sound as dire as possible. They want to mobilize DirecTV customers.
So they've been full-page ads in the L.A. Times, handing out rally towels at games, offering DirecTV customers hundreds of dollars to switch to Time Warner, and using social media to share their side of the story.
So none of this is working?
Doesn't seem to be. DirecTV says it's getting fewer cancellations than it expected and that most people who would have cancelled would have already done so. So they're not feeling a lot of urgency. Again, this is what you want to be saying if you're negotiating for their side, but if you talk to fans as I do a lot…they seem to blaming Time Warner more than DirecTV.
Some of them also blame the Dodgers, which seems fair since they're the ones that signed this monster deal with Time Warner when they could have kept the team with Fox for only slightly less money.