Major League Baseball has placed more hurdles in front of cord cutters than any of the four professional sports leagues. It has made baseball broadcasts the exclusive province of cable and satellite networks, even for your local teams. Add to that the league’s draconian blackout policies, and the prospect of watching the Grand Old Game without a pricey TV subscription seems as reachable as a Clayton Kershaw slider.

It doesn’t get much easier come October. This year’s postseason games will air nationally across five networks: Fox, Fox Sports 1 (FS1), ESPN, TBS, and Major League Baseball Network (MLBN). All but the first are cable/satellite channels you can’t tune into with a TV antenna. Fortunately, with some combination of over-the-air and over-the-top options, you can still watch virtually every at-bat, from the Wild Card round to the World Series. Here’s how.

Over the air

Jason Cirpriani

You can watch the World Series on Fox with just an antenna, provided your TV has a tune. 

Of all the channels carrying postseason games, Fox is the only one available over the air. The good news is Fox is the exclusive broadcaster of the World Series, so you’ll need only an antenna to see the American League and National League champs battle for the Commissioner’s Trophy. You’ll also be able watch some ALCS games, which will be split between Fox and FS1.

The bad news for cord cutters is that you won’t be able watch anything else without subscribing to one of the options that follow.

Sling TV

Sling TV is your single best option for watching the postseason without a cable subscription. In fact, you can access a significant amount of games for what you’d pay for a couple of beers at the ballpark. (Here’s a guide to Sling’s entire channel lineup.)

sling tv ui Sling TV

A Sling TV subscription is your best option for streaming almost every game of baseball’s postseason.

If you already have an antenna that can pull in a Fox affiliate, you can add ESPN and TBS to your channel lineup by subscribing to Sling Orange—Sling’s base package—for $20 a month. That will get you the American League Wild Card game, which airs on ESPN, and the entirety of the National League action (Wild Card, NLDS, and NLCS), which is carried exclusively by TBS.

That still doesn’t cover you for the ALDS and ALCS games that air on FS1, but SlingTV recently added that channel (and local Fox affiliates in select markets) to its offerings. To get it, just upgrade to the Sling Blue package for $5 more per month. If you don’t have cable, this is definitely your best option, as it will bring you the entire MLB postseason from the first pitch to the last out.

If you’re hesitant to add a streaming subscription to your budget just for the privilege of watching postseason baseball, remember that with a Sling TV package you get access to many other popular cable channels, including CNN, HGTV, and Comedy Central. There’s no contract, so you can cancel as soon as the World Series ends, though you might find you don’t want to. Sling TV also offers a free seven-day trial, so you can essentially watch the first week of postseason play without spending a dime.



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