As the MLB The Show Players League has gained in popularity since being formed two weeks ago, select regular-season games and its entire playoffs are slated to be broadcast on ESPN, ESPN2, FS1 and MLB Network.
The virtual baseball games made their way to televisions on Thursday, with ESPN2 airing matchups between Blake Snell (Tampa Bay Rays) and Lucas Giolito (Chicago White Sox), and Bo Bichette (Toronto Blue Jays) and Trevor May (Minnesota Twins).
While games remain available to stream on YouTube and Twitch, ESPN2 is next slated to air contests on Saturday. MLB Network will broadcast regular season matchups Sunday, at 5 p.m. PT. MLB Network will also air a one-hour “MLB The Show: Recap” at 4 p.m. on Sunday to highlight the latest action in the tournament.
The quarterfinals begin Friday, May 1, on FS1 with two best-of-three series. That round of the playoffs continues the following afternoon afternoon on ESPN2, with the semifinals starting Saturday evening.
ESPN2 and FS1 will each air a best-of-three semifinal series on May 2. The winners of each semifinal will then meet in the best-of-five championship series on Sunday, May 3, which will air on ESPN.
Each MLB team has a representative in the league, with Gavin Lux participating on behalf of the Los Angeles Dodgers. He won two of three games Thursday to improve to 16-6 in the MLB The Show 20 season.
Lux is currently atop the National League West standings, one game ahead of Fernando Tatis Jr., who of course is playing on behalf of the San Diego Padres. Regardless of league affiliation, the top eight teams qualify for the playoffs.
The Players League is benefiting Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Boys & Girls Clubs of Canada, with a total of $175,000 being donated across the 30 MLB team communities.
MLB, the MLB Players Association and Sony Interactive Entertainment will donate $5,000 on behalf of each participating player to a Boys & Girls Clubs affiliate in their team’s community. The league champion will earn an additional $25,000 donation to a Boys & Girls Club in his community.
MLB Players League TV schedule
Saturday, April 25, 12 p.m. PT
Game 1: Brett Phillips vs. Jeff McNeil
Game 2: Lucas Giolito vs. Hunter Pence
Sunday, April 26
MLB Network to air TBD matchups
Wednesday, April 29
ESPN2 to air TBD matchups
Friday, May 1
FS1 to air quarterfinals one and two (best of three series)
Saturday, May 2
ESPN2 to air quarterfinals three and four (best of three series)
ESPN2 to air semifinals one and two (best of three series)
Sunday, May 3
ESPN to air championship series (best of five)
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