KMOX reacts

08-04-05 --

It's Official; Cardinals Leaving KMOX
August 4, 2005
Change takes effect at end of season

K-M-O-X has been synonymous with the St. Louis Cardinals for more than half a century. But those days are over at the end of the current season. The Cardinals announced Friday that broadcasting rights will go to another A-M station -- K-T-R-S -- starting in the 2006 season. The move involves going from a 50-thousand-watt station heard in more than 40 states and several Canadian provinces at night to a station with a considerably weaker signal. Some St. Louis-area residents, especially in Illinois, often can't pick up K-T-R-S. But the Cardinals say that problem will be addressed by an agreement with W-S-M-I, a 50-thousand-watt F-M station in Litchfield (Illinois) to simulcast the games. The Cardinals also have reached an agreement with X-M Satellite Radio for coast-to-coast coverage. X-M currently carries the Cardinals and all other major league teams and charges listeners a monthly fee. The team's games are also available on the internet -- for a separate fee.

From the management, at the KMOX Forum:

KMOX is disappointed in the loss of Cardinals baseball which we have broadcast for the past 52 years. Cardinals baseball has played an important role in the stationís history, and we had hoped to continue the tradition of broadcasting the games to the millions of fans around the country who have come to rely on our award-winning coverage. Unfortunately, a win-win agreement could not be reached between us and the organization.

We were not prepared to enter into an agreement which would have had substantial financial implications on the station and Infinity Broadcasting in the future. The recent proliferation of available outlets to hear Cardinals baseball games, including online, satellite radio and cellular telephone, has decreased the exclusivity for which we had been paying a premium. Increasing our rights fees at this time would have not been in the best overall interest of KMOX and its legion of listeners.