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FiOS subscribers and MASN2 HD

Regardless of which date Stephen Strasburg debuted at Nats Park next homestand, it was going to be on MASN2, which has the entire six-game stint. This was unwelcome news to a bunch of my readers, who wanted to know why their Verizon FiOS service has MASN HD, but not MASN2 HD.

The short answer is that this is a FiOS issue, not a MASN issue. The network offers the MASN and MASN2 SD and HD signals to all of its 24 cable/satellite/fiber optic affiliates, and it's up to them to identify which channels they'll carry, according to a MASN spokesman.

So I then asked a FiOS spokesman, with a nod toward Strasburg's debut. Her response.

"While we may not have MASN2 HD in time for Stephen Strasburg's debut, it is one of the channels we're looking to add to the FiOS TV lineup soon."

If you look at MASN's provider list, you'll notice that there are a few other subscribers who won't have access to MASN2 HD (DISH Network folks, and a few other pockets of cable subscribers in farflung regions of Delaware, Virginia, Western Maryland, North Carolina and West Virginia). But for the close-in non-DISH people, everyone but FiOS subscribers should be set for MASN2 in HD.

By Dan Steinberg  |  June 2, 2010; 1:11 PM ET
Categories:  Media , Nats  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Keith Law hasn't seen anything like Strasburg
Next: Strasburg first start is essentially sold out


What a crock. I fall under this with the Capitals and Wizards on Verizon FIOS too. CSN+ (the 2nd Comcast Sportsnet channel) isn't carried so I'm forced to go to a bar if they're on that channel

Posted by: cperk7 | June 2, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

And I'm not just talking about the HD channel. The whole channel altogether, CSN+ Standard and HD, are not offered on FIOS

Posted by: cperk7 | June 2, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

cperk7, I've watched many caps games on CSN+ on FIOS, its usually on channel 1 when there's a game on.

Posted by: spotter | June 2, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

spotter- not in Anne Arundel County. I've checked. I think it's only PG and Montgomery in MD

Posted by: cperk7 | June 2, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

ah, you need to find a friend in PG and MoCo who you can drop a slingbox at :) (That's actually how I watch games, as I'm in NY, just use a slingbox at my parents in MoCo)

Posted by: spotter | June 2, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Like the 1st poster mentioned, during the regular season the Caps were the one regularly being bumped to the extremely blurry non-HD CSN+/FiOS channel 1 when the wizards were playing at the same time. You would think they would have added a HD overflow channel where they could put CSN+ and MASN2 games.

Posted by: HuyChuong | June 2, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Here's an outlandish idea: why doesn't MASN move the 6/8 game to MASN, and switch the out-of-contention blO's game to MASN2? It may annoy O's fans, but I figure they'll both get over it soon enough.

Posted by: wahoo2x | June 2, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Here's an outlandish idea: why doesn't MASN move the 6/8 game to MASN, and switch the out-of-contention blO's game to MASN2? It may annoy O's fans, but I figure they'll both get over it soon enough.

Posted by: wahoo2x | June 2, 2010 1:52 PM

MASN doesn't care about the Orioles that day - they care that the Orioles are playing the Yankees. MASN basically picks the channel based on who the O's/Nats are playing. Will be interesting to see if they do indeed switch channels.

Posted by: Kev29 | June 2, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

MASN will threaten to keep the game on MASN2 to use as leverage against cable providers.

Posted by: Rangwx1 | June 2, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

MASN2 HD is available on Comcast...check the 800s.

And for FiOS subscribers, you can catch CSN+ and MASN2 games on Channel 1, also known as "FiOS1" in the DC Market.

Posted by: jrraley | June 2, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

jrraley - yes, you can "see" the game on channel 1, but only in standard def.

Posted by: Bethesdangit1 | June 2, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

And, that channel 1, standard def. quality on my HD tv is horrible. A ridiculous situation considering Verizon advertises on MASN.

Posted by: rgibson25 | June 2, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

For the amount of money I shell out for FIOS, this is absurd. Its bad enough listening to Dibble, throw in a horrible low-def feed and the games are borderline unwatchable.

Posted by: trezmartin | June 2, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Verizon won't admit it (cause they don't tell their customers or customer service staff anything), but posters who seem to be pretty knowledgeable on their message boards say that the problem is FIOS is out of bandwidth or space or whatever the appropriate term is (I can't remember) to add HD channels right now. They haven't added HD channels since last fall when they added the NBA network and a handful of others. They've got many, many requests for HD channels like MASN2 and other regional sports channels and national channels like Fox Soccer HD and BBC America HD that have become available in the last year and they haven't added them. Despite all their poor communication with customers and even their own staff and their bait and switch pricing; I'll give FIOS credit that before last fall, they were very good about adding channels regularly. They recently got rid of a couple of the West Coast feed HD channels of premium movie channels in what sounds like an effort to make a little space. But it sounds like what little space they have right now is reserved to pick up local over the air station HD channels that they have to carry by law.

Posted by: thrh1 | June 2, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

I have Cox Cable in Fairfax County. Last year when there was no MASN2-HD I had to watch half of the Nats games in standard definition, which was horrible. And MASN's standard def was even worse than regular standard def because they were actually shooting all the games in HD and showing them in standard def when they were scheduled for MASN2. Doing that results in a worse picture than shooting and broadcasting all in standard def does. (If they happened to replay a MASN2 game, it showed up in HD - which meant that the picture was actually better on the replay than on the live broadcast. Fancy that.)

Well, this year MASN finally wised up and announced that all 162 Nats games would be offered on HD, some on MASN and some on MASN2. Right after they made this announcement, Cox starting showing a reserved channel for MASN2-HD in its channel listings, which was good. Around the same time, my 'hood finally got wired for FiOs so I started checking their deals for a possible switch. But no one at Verizon could answer my simple question - what HD channel will you be showing MASN2 on? Not only couldn't they answer the question, it was clear they didn't know what the hell I was talking about. So I decided to stick with Cox instead of going with FiOS. Sure looks like that was a good call on my part, doesn't it?

Remember, you can't spell FiOS without O's. In other words, blame Angelos.

Posted by: nunof1 | June 2, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

I'm a moco comcast victim; & this issue has me reluctant to switch to bigger bandwidth Fios. I suspect Comcast demands a premium for their sports networks to be carried on other system's netwrks. If I was a FIOS customer, I'd voice some outrage.

Posted by: Hattrik | June 2, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

I have tweeted the heck out of the Verizon FiOS guys about this for weeks.

It is deeply ironic that Verizon FiOS sponsors the Nats postgame shows on MASN and also on MASN2. In other words, Verizon would like viewers of that show--which MASN offers in HD--to switch their service to Verizon.

Imagine your shock if you responded positively to their advertising sponsorship, switched your service, and then found out that the MASN2 games are never available in HD.

It is just shameful. I have enjoyed Verizon's TV service for almost three years now, but I have to say that the lack of MASN2 in HD causes me at least to think about switching to one of their competitors that offers it.

Posted by: shepdave2003 | June 2, 2010 7:39 PM | Report abuse

And actually, nunof1, I can't see how the toad Angelos is to blame for this particular lack. This one's on Verizon, 100%. At least the network whose initials stand for Mr. Angelos Screws the Nats actually offers the step-child channel in HD.

But Verizon won't carry it.

Yes, you were smart indeed to stay with Cox.

Posted by: shepdave2003 | June 2, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

I'll switch from Cox to Fios the day they get MASN2.

Posted by: PowerBoater69 | June 2, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

MLB Network HD will be broadcasting the game (586 on Fios) but I don't know if it'll be blacked out in the DC area or not?


Posted by: 0460 | June 2, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

"And actually, nunof1, I can't see how the toad Angelos is to blame for this particular lack."

Simple. If it wasn't for Angelos, the Nats would not be the second class citizen on the Orioles network, and there would be no need for a MASN2 for FiOS to not carry.

Posted by: nunof1 | June 3, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse

Simple. If it wasn't for Angelos, the Nats would not be the second class citizen on the Orioles network, and there would be no need for a MASN2 for FiOS to not carry.

Posted by: nunof1 | June 3, 2010 8:23 AM

Well, sure I guess. But if the Nats had been able to broker their own deal with Comcast Sports Net, there'd be issues as well. Like times early and late in the season when the Nats would have shared space with Caps, Wizards and Redskins coverage. Then the Nationals would be on CSN+ with no access to HD on any carriers. So ironically, the Nats get better coverage on Comcast through MASN - weird! Also, Comcast Sports Net's HD picture is sub-par, while MASN's is flawless (IMO).

What I'd like to see is the Nats get on one of the area's sports radio stations. 106.7 please.

Posted by: Kev29 | June 3, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse


How about giving us the name and phone number of the Vz spokesbabe you quoted? That way, upset FIOS customers like me could give her a ring. Thanks in advance!

Posted by: matrixman | June 3, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Is MASN 2 part of basic cable for Montgomery County?

Posted by: ravcolt | June 7, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

I set my FiOS DVR to record the MLB Channel (588), which was listed as carrying the Nats game in which Strasburg debuted. Imagine my frustration when I arrived home, settled in and turned on my recording only to find . . . the Padres at the Mets. It's bad enough that FiOS carried the game only in SD on channel 1, but I would have recorded that channel if I had known the FiOS guide was lying about the game being on MLB.

Posted by: lawhoo | June 8, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

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