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Some of you outside the Seattle area might remember having a choice to make last spring:

  1. Buy MLB.tv for $80 (or $15/month), which lets you watch Mariners games live online.
  2. Buy MLB All Access for $110 (or $20/month), which gives you the whole package, including live broadcasts (video and audio), condensed games, highlights, the whole nine yards.
  3. Buy MSN Premium for $10/month, with the first three months free, which includes MLB All Access.
Needless to say, the choice wasn't too difficult. Going with #3 saved you $80 over the course of the season, and it was a breeze to cancel the membership as soon as the season ended.

Well, such a choice is no longer offered. Perhaps Major League Baseball got wise to the fact that they were hurting themselves by offering All Access to MSN Premium subscribers; that deal is no longer on the table.

Instead, you have three choices:

  1. Gameday audio, for $14.95.
  2. MLB.tv for $79.95.
  3. MLB All Access for $99.95.
They've shaved $10 off the price of the third option since last season, but that's still $70 more than I spent for the same package a year ago. Nevertheless, as a Mariners fan who spends half his year in Connecticut and the other half in San Diego, All Access is really the only choice I have, and I intend to shell out the $100 at some point before the season starts.

If you're also a suboptimally-located Mariners fan (or a fan of any other team, for that matter), those are your choices for live game coverage.