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Dodgers blackout should be lifted for Clayton Kershaw's no-hit replay

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Doesn't Time Warner Cable owe Dodgers fans a replay of Clayton Kershaw's no-hitter

Shouldn’t Time Warner Cable show a little heart (and a conscience) and replay the Clayton Kershaw no-hitter tonight, with access to all blacked-out TV outlets?

With the Dodgers off Thursday night, and seven of 10 Dodgers fans unable to see Wednesday’s near-perfect game, such a show of faith would ease fan frustration over the season-long standoff. At the very least, it would be some positive PR for a company in need of some.

Technically feasible? Maybe not. Morally necessary. Wouldn’t you say?

My colleague Joe Flint says the household rating for the game was a miserly 0.60, with 52,000 viewers and 34,200 households tuning in.

“Twitter your friends, email your pals, when he goes to the mound in the seventh is when you start taking these things seriously,” Vin Scully said during the telecast.

Dodgers games have been blacked out since spring training, in a dispute over pricing and bundled packaging of cable and satellite content. TWC claims the small fee it demands monthly for Dodgers telecasts and the team’s channel is a fair value. Cable and satellite providers respond that most of their customers do not care to get Dodgers games at any price. Led by DirecTV, they are using the showdown to push for a la carte pricing, whereby customers could pick and choose which shows and events they receive.

That seems a sensible stand. Why do customers have to order the entire menu rather than what they specifically want? At some point, this has to go before federal regulators.

In the meantime, 70% of the market gets no Dodgers games, including the 15-strikeout, 107-pitch treasure Wednesday night.

“Seriously?” fan Ken Newman wrote Thursday morning. “A Vin Scully-called, Clayton Kershaw no-hitter is blacked out in L.A.?  Why is that again, and who goes to jail?”

Well, the lack of outrage from civic leaders is appalling. And progress reports from the Dodgers are few and far between, as the disgust among fans grows. Some have just quit on their team.

“Hello, I was just writing to you because I wanted to ask . . .  if there was any recent action going on with the Dodgers,” reader John Campbell wrote Thursday morning. “Since I can't watch them on TV and I don't have time to go to the games, nor the extra money, they have really fallen into the sports ether and vanished from my radar. So I am asking, how are those Dodgers doing this season? Should I care, because it's obvious they don't seem to care about their fans.”

For those who get the Dodgers channel (SportsNet LA), the game will be replayed at 7:30 Thursday night.

The rest of us are waiting too.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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