Fox to change World Series time for Obama

Presidential candidate's ad buy interfering with game

NEW YORK -- Barack Obama might have the power to move the World Series by a few minutes.

To accommodate a half-hour Obama time buy on Fox on Oct. 29, Major League Baseball has agreed to move the start time of World Series Game 6 by about 15 minutes. That would move the start of the game from 8:20 p.m. ET or so to 8:35 p.m.

"Fox will accommodate Senator Obama's desire to communicate with voters in this longform format," Fox Sports said in a statement. "We are pleased that Major League Baseball has agreed to delay the first pitch of World Series Game 6 for a few minutes in order for Fox to carry his program on Oct. 29. If requested, the network would be willing to make similar time available to Senator McCain's campaign."

Along with CBS and NBC, Fox was approached by the Obama campaign last week to purchase the 8-8:30 p.m. time slot Oct. 29. If a Game 6 is needed, Fox is obligated to carry the game. That prevented the network from agreeing outright to carry the commercial, which was cleared by CBS and NBC last Thursday.

The blessing from MLB clears the way for Fox to air the promo and collect upward of $1 million in ad revenue for the half hour, more than what either CBS or NBC was charging.

While a big network ad buy from a presidential candidate is rare, it's not unprecedented for a network and sports league to move the start time of a sports event to accommodate a political broadcast. In early September, the National Football League moved up the kickoff time of the opening-night game -- which aired on NBC -- to 7 p.m. to make sure that the game would be over before Sen. John McCain stepped up to the podium to accept the nomination of the Republican party during the RNC.
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