Just last week the MLB made it clear that they wanted their official league data used in Washington state. This week, they’re expanding their reach to another sports wagering platform. The MLB has come to an agreement with recently launched FOX Bet, making them their fourth official gaming operator.
Prior to this deal, the MLB was already partnered with MGM Resorts, FanDuel Group, and DraftKings. MGM is definitely their most active partner, currently having partnerships with both the NBA and NHL. They do not have an official deal with the NFL due to the league’s icy stance towards legal sports betting in the U.S., but MGM is partnered with the New York Jets.
DraftKings is on the smaller end, although they do have data deals in place with the NBA and NHL. On the other hand, FanDuel Group is another big player. They also have deals with the NBA and NHL to be official betting partners. More importantly, FanDuel Group is owned by Flutter Entertainment.
This is significant because Flutter Entertainment recently acquired the Stars Group in a massive acquisition. As a result, the Stars Group and FanDuel Group are now directly connected. What’s bigger is that the Stars Group is directly responsible for producing FOX Bet via combined efforts from FOX Sports.
Putting this into perspective, it makes the MLB’s partnership with FOX Bet a natural fit because FanDuel Group/Flutter Entertainment already has an active deal with the league. As for what exactly FOX Bet will use official MLB data for is still up in the air, but there are several opportunities the betting platform could employ it for.
In a week, Game 1 of Major League Baseball’s World Series will begin between NLCS Champions, the Washington Nationals and the winner of the ALCS, either the New York Yankees or the Houston Astros. The Nats swept the Saint Louis Cardinals 4-0 to book their place in the World Series, while the Astros currently lead the Yanks 2-1. Game 4 will be played later today.
FOX Sports is a regular broadcaster of the MLB’s World Series, which gives them an excellent chance to use official data for FOX Bet. Beyond the championship, there are still games to play in the ALCS. Proposition bets for who will which team will win individual game and whether or not a specific player will hit a homerun are to common stats to wager on.
FOX Bet could also be represented in non-game broadcasts from FOX Sports. Two shows that come to mind include The Herd and Lock It In. Considering that Lock It In is entirely focused on providing sports wagering education to viewers, it would make for a natural selection for use of official MLB data. This would give either show an added level of credibility, especially since the deal between the MLB and FOX Bet allows for use of league logos and other trademarks.
With all of the MLB’s warmth towards legal sports betting in the U.S., you can only expect their activity to ramp up before next season begins. It is unclear how successful their efforts will be to enforce royalty fees for individual sportsbooks, but that will certainly be something that they focus on.