Casino operator MGM Resorts International has signed its third major sports betting partnership in the United States, becoming the first ever official gaming partner for the Major League Baseball (MLB).

The wide-ranging partnership combines the MLB brand with MGM Resorts and its playMGM brand across league and team sponsorships. It also includes data usage in gaming, promotion across MLB-owned media platforms, and domestic and international activations at MLB events.

The deal follows MGM’s recent agreements with two other major US sports leagues, the NBA in July and the NHL in October.

"We are pleased to partner with MGM Resorts International, a clear industry leader in the sports gaming area, to work together on bringing innovative experiences to baseball fans and MGM customers," said Baseball Commissioner Robert Manfred Jr. "Our partnership with MGM will help us navigate this evolving space responsibly, and we look forward to the fan engagement opportunities ahead."

As an official sponsor of Major League Baseball, MGM will domestically promote its brand and gaming options across MLB's digital and broadcast platforms, including MLB Network, MLB.com, the MLB At Bat app, and additional fan engagement offerings to be jointly developed.

MGM will be designated as an MLB-authorized gaming operator and be able utilize MLB's official statistics feed, on a non-exclusive basis, throughout its digital and live domestic sports gaming operations. MLB will also make enhanced statistics available to MGM on an exclusive basis.

In addition, MGM and MLB will work together on comprehensive responsible gaming measures and work to protect the integrity of the game both on and off the field.

"We are excited to enter into this historic partnership with MLB. We are thrilled to create a new one-of-a-kind fan experience for baseball fans," said MGM Resorts chairman and CEO Jim Murren. "Combining MGM Resorts' world class entertainment and technology with MLB data will continue to transform a rapidly changing industry.

“This partnership further amplifies the significance of our GVC JV, firmly establishing MGM Resorts and playMGM as the market leader in partnerships with major professional sports leagues."

MLB’s intellectual property will appear in MGM advertising and promotional campaigns. The operator also will broaden its commitment to baseball by securing multiple MLB club partnerships, and will have a presence at MLB Jewel Events, including the All-Star Game and World Series.

As part of the agreement, MGM Resorts will be an official partner at grassroots baseball events in Japan, including MLB Road Show which tours throughout Japan giving fans an opportunity to participate in baseball activities including batting and pitching cages, baserunning stations, virtual reality, and a baseball museum.

Shares in MGM Resorts International (NYQ:MGM) closed up 1.18 per cent at $27.43 per share in New York Tuesday.

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