Verizon is now carrying MLB Network HD and the league's out-of-market package, MLB Extra Innings, about a year after telling customers it was trying to secure a programming deal with Major League Baseball.
In February 2008, Verizon senior vice president of media relations Eric Rabe posted a blog entry saying the telco was optimistic it would clinch a deal "soon" with MLB to offer the Extra Innings package.
"Over the months, our launch schedule changed, and I've had to update information several times along the way," Rabe wrote in a blog posting Monday, announcing the deal with MLB. "But we've made it... Thank you for hanging in there with us."
MLB Network HD is available on channel 586 to FiOS TV Extreme HD package subscribers that have an HD set-top box. The standard-def feed of MLB Network has been available on channel 86 since Jan. 1 for customers of both the Extreme HD and Essentials packages.
MLB Extra Innings is a premium service option available for $199 for the season; Verizon is offering an early bird rate of $169 for subs who sign up prior to April 12. The package features up to 80 live out-of-market MLB games each week, with up to 10 of those in high-definition.