Four Workarounds for Fans Who Don't Have the Dodgers' New TV Channel

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Mon, Mar 10, 2014 at 6:34 AM
click to enlarge Most L.A. homes don't have the Dodgers' new channel - SPORTSNET L.A.
  • SportsNet L.A.
  • Most L.A. homes don't have the Dodgers' new channel
The Dodgers are about to open their season, but as of right now most TV viewers aren't able to watch the games. The team has launched a new cable network, SportsNet L.A., which is designed to extract every last dollar from people who don't even like baseball enhance the Dodger fan experience.

But so far, only Time Warner Cable is offering the channel. Everyone else - DirecTV, Charter, Cox, DISH, U-Verse, Verizon FiOS - has balked at the cost, so subscribers of those services are out of luck. Broadcast TV viewers are also screwed, as Dodger games will no longer air on KCAL.

So what is a Dodger fan to do? Here are four workarounds:

1. Become an Angel fan

If you already have cable or satellite TV, chances are very good that you can watch every Angel game on Fox Sports West. This may involve burying a long-held animosity toward the Angels, or toward Orange County as a whole. Well, get over it. They're the Los Angeles Angels, so you can root for them without shame or fear of negative association.

2. Get MLB Extra Innings, and become a fan of any other team

OK, the Angels kind of suck. Guess what. You can root for any other team you want, and watch all (or most all) of their games with MLB Extra Innings. (Cost: $200 or more.) In the era of fantasy baseball and free agency, staying loyal to a hometown team is downright old-fashioned, especially in L.A., where everybody is from somewhere else. Why not become a Nationals fan this year? How about the Tigers? As Jerry Seinfeld says, it's just clothes.

3. Get MLB.tv and watch Dodger games on delay

MLB.tv streams (almost) every out-of-market game live on your Internet-enabled device, for the low price of $130 per season. You can't watch the Dodgers or Angels play live, due to blackout restrictions, but you can watch them on delay, starting 90 minutes after the game. A side benefit is that this allows you to get rid of cable, which will save you money and make you feel like a millennial. The losers in any carriage-fee battle are cable customers, so this is a way to opt out of that (although, of course, you'll probably still be paying your cable provider for high-speed Internet access).

4. Get MLB.tv and watch Dodger games live using digital subterfuge

If you simply must watch the Dodgers live, there is a way to do it. First, sign up for MLB.tv. Then, use a proxy server to disguise your location. The blackout restrictions apply in the home territories of each team. But if MLB.tv thinks you're logging on from another state, then it won't black out the Dodgers. Here are detailed instructions on how to do this. For more ideas, check out this Reddit thread. Be warned that this might require several tries and a certain level of technological self-confidence. Plus, MLB is apparently trying to crack down on this. But good luck.

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