Perhaps MLB.tv blackouts will be a thing of the past in the years to come. This year MLB plans to offer a “Single Team” add-on to help you watch your favorite team. However, you will need to authenticate through your cable or satellite provider. That’s a problem for cord-cutters everywhere. It doesn’t seem at all fair considering that MLB.tv is a premium streaming service. Those who subscribe should be able to watch every game, regardless of the location. That isn’t the case though as viewers in the United States and Canada are impacted by blackout rules. Luckily there is a workaround. You can solve the blackout problem by using a VPN.
Best VPN to Stream MLB.tv Blackout Games
First you will want to find a reliable and solid VPN service. In this case you will want one with fast VPN servers in whichever region you plan to watch coverage in, again we recommend the UK. Since you want a fast, reliable service to choose from we’ll share some leading VPN providers with large networks.
How to Use a VPN to Watch MLB At Bat
I’ll use ExpressVPN for the example of how to use a VPN service to watch your favorite MLB teams.
- First you’ll want to download the VPN client. ExpressVPN offers free client software for Windows, Mac and Linux. In addition to free apps for iOS and Android.
- Launch the ExpressVPN app and select a server location. We chose London but ExpressVPN has a large network of servers around the world.
- You can let the client select the protocol or do it manually. For streaming videos from sites like YouTube, we like to use IKEv2 because the connection are fast. They also support OpenVPN and L2TP. We still recommend IKEv2, especially for mobile devices.
- Click the big round connect button. After a few seconds, you’ll see the shield around the button turn green. There will also be a message letting you know the “VPN is ON”
- We’re now located in London as far as anyone can tell online. As such we can reach any site as if sitting in London. The same would be true if we connected to a server in the US or anywhere else in the world.
Connecting to a VPN is as simple as that. Now that you have an IP address from the ExpressVPN server in the United Kingdom, you can browse the Internet as if you were actually there. The same is true from any country. Connecting to a server in the United Kingdom will also let you access BBC Sports for English coverage, or any other channel you want to choose.
Hopefully by now, you can see that a good VPN opens access to content around the world. If you live outside the United States, the service can help you access popular services like Netflix, Hulu and Pandora. Of course, you would still need an account for services like Netflix, but the VPN will help you watch US programming. You could enjoy TV shows and movies on Netflix as if you were sitting in the United States. That is also the case with any other region you would like to access.
MLB.TV Blackouts Explained
What are the Major League Baseball blackouts all about? Here’s an explanation from the MLB.com website:
- Regular Season Local Live Blackout in the U.S. and Canada: All live games streamed on MLB.TV and available through MLB.com At Bat are subject to local, regional or national blackouts. Except for certain MLB regular season and Postseason games as described below or in certain MLB Club home television territories for which MLBAM may offer in-market subscription Services, all live games will be blacked out in each applicable Club’s home television territory. If a game is blacked out in an area, it is not available for live game viewing. If you are an MLB.TV subscriber within an area subject to blackout, the applicable game will be available as an archived game approximately 90 minutes after the conclusion of the game.
As you can see baseball fans in the US and Canada are subject to local, regional, and national blackouts. That means you can’t always rely on MLB.com At Bat to watch your favorite team play live. Blackout games are available an hour and a half after the game ends. That’s very anti-climatic. Most Fans want to watch the games live, not on-demand after the fact. By then you’ve likely seen the outcome. The answer to the problem is a VPN. Connecting to a VPN server in another country will get around the blackouts. Avoid all the blackouts by using a VPN service.
The key to getting around the blackout restrictions is connecting to a VPN server outside the United States and Canada. MLB At Bat and other streaming services use a technology called geo-blocking to determine whether or not you can access their content. In the case of blackouts the app is looking for the location of your IP address. If it falls in the US or Canada the blackout rules will apply. If you connect to a VPN server in another country it will change your IP address location. That will let you watch any MLB game without blackout.