Can Facebook Knock It Out of the Park With This MLB Deal?

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Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) shares saw a bump to close out the week as it announced a new deal with Major League Baseball (MLB). The social media giant now has exclusive rights to stream 25 afternoon games on its network in the United States. We saw a similar move from Twitter with the NFL years ago.

Note that this is the first time that the MLB has agreed to show regular season games exclusively on Facebook. Unanimously, MLB owners were in favor of the move.

Neither party announced the financial terms of the deal, but Bloomberg is putting the deal between $30 million and $35 million.

Overall, these games will add to the Facebook experience. In the previous years, Facebook added UEFA Champions League and Univision to broadcast live games from Mexico’s top soccer league. Not to mention Facebook also had 20 nonexclusive MLB games last season and acquired exclusive rights to stream 47 college basketball games involving smaller conferences this year.

Lee Berke, an industry consultant, commented to Bloomberg:

Much like the migration of sports from broadcast to cable, you’re reaching these milestones where the combination of the financial incentive and the audience allow you to make the next great leap. This is part of the next great leap.

Shares of Facebook were last seen up about 1.5% at $185.03 on Friday, with a consensus analyst price target of $222.81 and a 52-week range of $137.60 to $195.32.