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Cubs broadcaster Marquee Sports inks deal with Hulu

(Graphic: The Desk)

Marquee Sports Network, the new broadcast home of Chicago Cubs games, has inked a deal with its first over-the-top streaming TV provider.

The Walt Disney Company’s Hulu announced on Monday it will carry the new regional sports channel when it launches on Friday.

“We are thrilled to partner with Hulu and add them to our growing list of over 30 affiliates who will carry the network,” Marquee Sports Network executive Mike McCarthy said in a statement. “We’ve heard from countless Hulu subscribers who were keenly interested to see their favorite baseball team. And now, they will!”

The channel will be a part of the Hulu with Live TV service, which costs $55 a month. It will be bundled with other sports channels, including Disney-owned ESPN, Comcast-owned NBC Sports Network and Fox Sports 1.

Marquee has already signed distribution deals with other cable and satellite providers, including AT&T for distribution on U-Verse and DirecTV, and cable services MediaCom and Spectrum.

Notably absent: Comcast, the largest pay TV provider in the Chicago metropolitan area. It was not immediately clear if both sides would reach an agreement by the time the network launches.

Sinclair Broadcasting Group and the Chicago Cubs are co-partners in the channel.

“The Chicago Cubs have an opportunity to serve fans in a deeper, richer way, with in-depth Cubs content and extensive pre- and post-game coverage of nearly every Cubs game…regardless of whether another local team is playing,” a statement on Marquee’s website reads.

The channel will broadcast 150 local games, but won’t include games that are carried nationally on Major League Baseball’s own network.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).