Major League Baseball broadcasts have long been exclusive to TV and radio stations in the United States. But as more and more people start cutting the cord, demand for watching baseball online without a cable or satellite subscription grows.
In this article, we’ll show you several ways to live stream baseball online, including the 2018 MLB Playoffs. The Playoffs will be broadcast on TBS, FS1, Fox, and the MLB Network.
Avoid blackouts with a VPN
All of these cord-cutting solutions are still subject to blackout restrictions. Because local broadcasters on cable and satellite still get first dibs on content licenses, no one else is allowed to show live games in their coverage area. In most cases, blackout restrictions can be bypassed by using a VPN. By encrypting your device’s internet connection and routing it through a remote server, you can make it seem as though you’re accessing the stream from somewhere outside the blackout region.
Our top recommendation is ExpressVPN, which all the servers, bandwidth, live customer support, and strong security you need packed into a simple and intuitive app. All you need to do is:
- Sign up for and download ExpressVPN
- Install the app and go through the short setup process
- Connect to a server outside of the blackout region
- Stream the game as you normally would
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The simplest way to watch baseball games online is to buy a subscripion to MLB.tv, the league’s official streaming service. Prices start at $79.99 (promotion as of time of writing) to $109.99 per year or $24.99 per month. If you only care about one team you can opt to only watch its games for a yearly $84.99. Picture quality is excellent, you can view multiple games at once, and subscribers can even DVR the games on supported devices. MLB.tv subscriptions include live streams of playoff and World Series games.
But MLB.tv has a few restrictions, the most glaring of which are regional blackouts. This stipulation often prevents fans on MLB.tv from watching the games they want to see the most–their hometown teams–until 90 minutes after the game has concluded. The live audio, however, is never blacked out.
You can easily bypass blackouts on MLB.tv with a VPN, and watch games from abroad.
MLB.tv says subscribers can “watch every out-of-market game regular season game live or on demand on over 400 supported devices.” Additionally, subscribers can watch a full archive of old games, track their fantasy league players, use a widget to track pitch stats, listen to just the audio broadcast, and watch highlights and stat updates as they are updated in real time.
MLB At Bat app
MLB At Bat is the league’s official mobile app for Android and iOS. MLB.tv subscribers can live stream games right on their mobile devices for an additional $2.99 per month.
Be warned, however, that you cannot bypass regional blackouts on At Bat, even with a VPN. This is because At Bat uses your phone’s GPS—not its IP address—to verify your location. The GPS must be turned on to stream video, and it will detect whether or not you’re using a GPS location spoofing app. Nothing short of rooting or jailbreaking your device will be enough to bypass the location checks.
Fubo TV includes TBS, FS1, and some local Fox channels in its basic and Extra packages. MLB Network is not included, which means no NL Division Series games. A 7-day free trial is available, and you get a $5 discount on the first month. After that, the basic plan is $45 per month.
Fubo TV is available in several countries, but you’ll need the US package to get the channels required to stream MLB games live online. That means a VPN will be necessary if you’re outside of the United States.
Sling TV, a sort of cable service through the internet, a little while back obtained the rights to live stream games on TBS, ESPN, Fox Sports 1 and regional Fox Sports networks. If your team broadcasts games on those networks this solution can work for you. They include Diamondbacks, Reds, Braves, Tigers, Marlins, Rays, Royals, Cardinals, Rangers, Twins, Indians, Padres, Angels, Brewers, and Yankees. After a 7-day free trial, you’ll need the Sling Blue and Sling Orange plans, which costs $40 a month and includes a slew of other channels.
Sling TV is only available in the United States. If you’re not in the country or the game you want to watch is blacked out, you can watch it using a VPN. You can view in a web browser or on an app for iOS, Android, Roku, Apple TV, smart TV, etc.
Youtube TV is a live streaming cord-cutting service that costs $40 per month and comes with a 30-day free trial. You get a wide range of channels with sports content, including Fox Sports, FS1, FS2, ESPN, MLB Network, NBC, and TBS. Youtube TV will even record games played by teams you’ve selected as your favorites—there are no storage limits. You can have up to six accounts per household.
Youtube TV is only available in the United States, but you can access it with a VPN if you’re abroad.
Hulu Live is another cord cutting service with FS1, TBS, ESPN, and more. Compared to Youtube TV, the trial period is shorter (7 days) and it doesn’t come with MLB Network.
Hulu Live is only available in the US, so travelers abroad will have to access it with Hulu VPN.
Playstation Vue is a subscription cord cutting service that costs $35 per month, or $45 per month if you want to include the MLB Network. Every plan comes with a 7-day free trial. The package includes ESPN, TBS, FS1, and Fox Sports channels.
Playstation Vue is only available to US residents, so be sure to get a VPN if you plan on watching from abroad.
DirecTV Now is a standalone streaming service from cable provider DirecTV. The price is $40 per month for the basic package, which includes ESPN, FS1, Fox Sports, and TBS. The next plan up costs $55 per month and includes the MLB Network. A 7-day free trial is on offer.
DirecTV Now is only available to US residents, so you’ll need a VPN if you want to watch from overseas.
Unsanctioned live streams
Another option is to watch MLB.tv games on third-party live streaming websites. These often operate in a legal grey area, so we don’t encourage their use. You can usually find an unsanctioned stream through either Google or Reddit with a bit of searching. Beware that many links are scams, the sites are littered with advertisements, trackers, and links to malware. They are unreliable and could get cut off at any moment during the stream. And they are almost always lower quality than the official outlet.