Dodgers Jump to KCAL

LOS ANGELES KCAL-TV, Viacom’s independent station here, has signed an eight-year agreement that will make it the new home of Major League Baseball’s Los Angeles Dodgers beginning with the 2006 season.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but the estimated value of the deal is $10 million per year.

“Now I know what it feels like to hit a grand slam,” said Don Corsini, president and general manager of KCAL and KCBS, Viacom’s owned-and-operated CBS station in the market. Another local Viacom property, Infinity Broadcasting’s KFWB-AM, has the radio broadcast rights to Dodgers games, allowing the Viacom outlets to take advantage of cross-promotion opportunities.

The news follows just two weeks after KCAL, currently in its 28th year as the TV home of the Los Angeles Lakers, signed an extension with the team through the 2011-12 National Basketball Association season.

Dodgers games formerly aired on KCOP, Fox Television’s UPN affiliate in the market. KCOP negotiated a one-year extension when News Corp. sold the team to Frank McCourt in January.

Until the Dodgers contract kicks in, KCAL is under contractual obligation to carry the Anaheim Angels through the 2005 baseball season.