"Blue Jays coverage on TSN2 gets underway on Tuesday, May 19 with the JaysNone of you need any reminder what cable provider is still not carrying TSN2, especially if you're also a Raptors fan, or that Red Sox-Jays games tend to attract the highest ratings. This is bad news to go along with the injuries to pitchers Ricky Romero and B.J. Ryan.
taking on the Boston Red Sox in a key three-game series. TSN2 is readily available in the GTA in both Standard Definition and High Definition on Bell TV (Channel 401, 851 HD), Shaw Direct (Channel 401, 269 HD), and Cogeco Cable (Channel 156, 729 HD)."
The FAN 590's Bob McCown, at this very moment, is going high dudgeon about "what maroon brokered this deal?" It is possible this forces Rogers to come to terms about carrying the spin-off network, which launched in August. Or they could go el cheapo. Someone who knows can field this one: Would Rogers be able to air the visiting team's broadcast, particularly NESN in the case of that April 19-21 series vs. the Red Sox, on its four regional channels? It would be an easy way out, but given that they often stick the other team's broadcast of games which aren't being carried by Sportsnet or TSN on that Channel 399, don't put it past them.
The point is it is a blatantly anti-fan decision to stick games on a digital channel which is still unavailable to a wide swath of consumers, if it comes to that point. (Chris Zelkovich at the Toronto Star is saying it will get resolved, finally). However, let's stay on the up-and-up and presume the principals here must know this. Let's believe, in the heart of hearts, that reasonable people can always come to a reasonable solution. Times are tight in the Canadian broadcast industry, so you're going to see this pitched battles for customers, but this is going too far. It lasted through the entire Raptors season, but it might be different with the Jays, whose following is more national, more Boomer.
Really, only in Canada could you see this happen, Rogers owning the team and the ballpark, but being party to its fans not being able to watch. It is awfully curious that a Red Sox series was earmarked for TSN2 (TSN would still have hockey commitments in mid-May). TSN does not mess around and as Ottawa Senators fans can relate, the games won't be on the MLB Extra Innings package (just as local broadcasts aren't put on NHL Centre Ice).
The only other games scheduled for that channel are two Sunday afternoon games in September, presumably when there is an a priori commitment to the CFL. It should be pointed out Edmonton Eskimos fans raised a stink over this last fall and got a game aired when it wasn't going to available in Edmonton. Hopefully Jays fans can mobilize over at The Tao of Stieb and Drunk Jays Fans and elsewhere and do the same.