New York -- The opening day for ESPN's trial with
Major League Baseball has been postponed until Dec. 6, a court official said last week.
The trial, which will see ESPN fight to keep its MLB
contract, was originally scheduled to begin Nov. 15.
With the 2000 baseball season set to begin in April,
it's not clear how the new trial date will affect MLB's cable distribution next
year. ESPN's contract expires in 2002.
If ESPN loses the case, MLB may only have a few months to
strike a deal to possibly replace ESPN.
"It probably will be a challenge [to find a
replacement carrier]," MLB spokesman Rich Levin said. "We'll just have to
see what happens."