Today was the day that Diamond Sports Group has to make a payment to the Cincinnati Reds to maintain the broadcast rights to continue to air games on Bally Sports Ohio. Alden Gonzalez of ESPN reports that they planned to make that payment on time. Earlier this year they did not make the payment in time, but there was a 15-day grace period built in and they made the payment within that grace period to retain the rights.

While Diamond Sports Group is going through bankruptcy over the Bally Sports regional sports networks, Bally Sports Ohio is not involved in that because the Cincinnati Reds have a partial ownership stake in it. That kind of made things a bit unique for the Reds and the broadcasting rights relationship.

With the payment made, and the last payment that was not paid on time being back in April, it would seem that the current payment would take the club’s rights through the end of the 2023 baseball season. That is an assumption, of course, but it would be strange for the payment schedule to be three months apart for one payment, but shorter in time for the next one.

We will have to wait and see how things shake out in the bankruptcy courts moving forward as what happens there could alter what Diamond Sports Group does and how it handles the regional sports networks they own that aren’t involved in it – such as Bally Sports Ohio. Major League Baseball has plans in place for scenarios where the payments aren’t made and they take the broadcasting rights back – they’ve done so with the San Diego Padres, for example. That’s going to be on the back burner for Cincinnati at this time, but looking towards 2024 it may be something that has to be revisited if things continue to be dicey for Diamond Sports Group.

19 Responses

  1. Craig Z

    I would think ratings are up with the Reds winning and maybe this is why they want to keep the broadcast rights

    • Doug Gray

      That would be believable if they hadn’t decided to not pay the Padres earlier this year.

  2. Rick

    I hope that they still patch those thru to BSSO & BSSE. I get most of the Reds games here in the Chattanooga area but they get patched thru to GA. or Nashville. Then Spectrum broadcast them, but they’re never listed as a Reds game, it’s listed as beach volleyball or golf, weird. We’re in Braves Territory as well.

      • Rick

        Hey Randy!
        Marion Co. Tn. for me.
        You have the same or similar issues too?

      • Randy in Chatt

        I’ve coached soccer vs. Marion County High School for many years!

        Yup, same issues. Then yesterday for the most part they had some rodeo or something on XFinity guide until a couple hours before the game time.

        Lately, I have been going on Bally’s site to watch the games if they get bumped by so many of the ATL, Memphis or N-Ville teams:

        I think they are on tonight so don’t need the Bally app this time…..I hope.

  3. Jim Walker

    Bah, Humbug! Fiber coming to my neighborhood in the next couple of months from a provider that does not bundle content services. I was hoping to be 100% free from the cable company but with the reports I’ve seen about Bally’s DTC Reds coverage, it doesn’t look like this will be the case. Was really hoping MLB would be the Reds provider and the NHL would take over the Blue Jackets (still possible I guess for CBJ).

    I saw yesterday that the Pheonix Suns (who Bally fired) are closing a deal that will be over the air and also have DTC for folks who can’t get the over the air signal. That would work for me too.

    • Rick

      Jim, I hope that you get your feeds to meet your needs.
      I’ve been fortunate to find ways to watch my Reds for the 29 years that we’ve lived down here.
      I follow them on GameDay via my smartphone if the game doesn’t get patched through. September months are usually rough, or if the Predators NHL game conflicts.
      I’ve been a sports junkie for 58 years.

      • Jim Walker

        Spectrum and Bally actually have a good setup here in Ohio. The issue that Spectrum charges bandit prices.

        That said, one way or another, we can get whichever of the Reds/ Jackets are in season plus the Cavaliers (which I don’t watch) on the Spectrum feed here in the Dayton area. They have one fixed additional alternate channel for conflicts during NHL/NBA seasons.; and, last April when a 3rd channel was needed, they also came through with it so everyone could watch whichever game they wanted.

        I actually stream via the Spectrum app or a browser almost all the time because my wife is a nonsports fan. As I inferred above, the Bally app which I can access via my Spectrum subscription just doesn’t seem as stable as Spectrum. I hope at the least when the bankruptcy works out that the content now on Bally would be available as a separate subscription via Spectrum not requiring a full cable package.

      • Rick

        I agree about the Spectrum charges being so outrageously high. We get our high speed internet through them. Plus, to get the sports package we have to pay for the premium level.

    • Daytonnati

      I am with you, Jim. I would cut the cord tonight, if not for the Reds. I await the day that MLB or the Reds offer a package that includes home games.

      • Jim Walker

        So, what do you know about MetroNet fiber? They are laying fiber now in Beavercreek and are supposed to be operational in my plat which is Fairborn but adjoins Beavercreek sometime in the fall.

    • Droslovinia

      I’m with you on this. I get my Internet from that company that sponsors the Reds on radio and that’s all I get – the radio. I feel like I’m back in the 70’s, when I listened to the radio for every game that wasn’t on the national broadcast, or I wasn’t personally at. My MLB package is pretty meaningless when I can’t watch the Reds even when they are 3,000 miles away, due to a blackout!

    • Joekr

      I wish I could get that channel. I dropped it a couple years back, and now when I tried to upgrade on their website, it’s not available to me. I can pay extra to see Bally on the app, but the Reds are not included on the app. We finally have a team worth watching, and the bankrupt channel that carries the games isn’t available.

      I don’t know if it is just me, my area, or their website is not user friendly. I may just ditch Spectrum all thogether.

      • Rick

        I hate that for you JOEKR.
        Can you get Bally Sport South & South East off the app? I know that it’s a regional thing, but it might be worth a shot.

  4. Rick

    I’m glad that we get the game tonight Randy! We need to win 2 of 3.
    That’s great to hear about your soccer coaching career. I hope that your team’s have done well.
    I coached baseball for 10 years and loved it. Then, I got roped into doing a start up pee wee basketball team many years ago. We were the only rookie team. It wasn’t pretty. Lol

    • Randy in Chatt

      Nice to hear from another big time Reds fan in the Chattanooga area. Did you coach baseball for MCHS? I coached two years of HS baseball way back when but we didn’t play MCHS in the two years I coached back then.

      • Rick

        Thanks Randy, and to you as well!
        We moved to TN. in early 1994 & and my coaching predated that point.
        I coached a startup Sr. Babe Ruth team 16-18 for 3 years, and then the Babe Ruth team for 7 years. I took 2 of the Sr. BR teams all the way to the Ky. State Tournament, we only won one game. We were vastly overmatched from both a talent & talent pool standpoint. Eastern Ky. VS the bigger metro districts was totough to overcome. I was proud of all the kids that I coached over my coaching span.