Union Broadcasting Announces Royals Radio Partnership with WHB 810AM and KZPL 97.3 FM
August 28, 2003
(WHB 810 Press Release)Union Broadcasting Inc., a locally owned company that operates Sports Radio 810 WHB, 97.3 The Planet, and Hot Talk 1510 KCTE, announced today the acquisition of the exclusive radio broadcast rights to Kansas City Royals Baseball. The four-year deal begins with the upcoming 2004 season.
All 162 regular season games will be broadcast on Sports Radio 810 WHB, the largest all-sports radio station in America. In addition, all evening games will be simulcast on 97.3 The Planet KZPL-FM.
"We are thrilled to be the new broadcast home of the Royals," said Union Broadcasting President/General Manager Chad Boeger. "We look forward to bringing Kansas City baseball fans the best Royals coverage possible."
(KC Royals Press Release)The Kansas City Royals announced today that Union Broadcasting has secured the rights to the Royals Radio Network for the next four years. Beginning with the 2004 season and continuing through the end of the 2007 baseball season, all Kansas City Royals games will be broadcast in the Kansas City area on the new flagship station WHB 810 AM. In addition, all games beginning at 7 p.m. Central time or later will be simulcast on KPLZ 97.3 "The Planet." The agreement also includes 15 Spring Training games during each year of the term. "We are extremely pleased to have Union Broadcasting as our new radio partner beginning next season," said Royals President, Dan Glass. "The combination of WHB and 97.3 "The Planet" will maximize our reach in the greater Kansas City area. We know with their energy, creativity and passion for sports that this will be a successful partnership that will benefit the marketing and business operations for both the Royals and Union Broadcasting." "We are ecstatic for the opportunity to work with the Kansas City Royals," said Union Broadcasting President Chad Boeger. "This is a credit to our entire staff and the hard work they put into the process. All of us at Union Broadcasting will continue to work as hard to make this a successful venture with the Royals." Union Broadcasting secured the rights to the Royals Radio Network through a bidding process that included Entercom-Kansas City and Susquehanna-Kansas City. Entercom operates seven stations in Kansas City and has held the rights to the Royals Radio Network the past six seasons, while Susqehanna owns four stations in Kansas City, including KCMO 710 AM. "We were fortunate that we had three highly qualified bidders interested in the rights to the Royals Radio Network," said Glass. "Each group expressed great interest in the Kansas City Royals and worked hard during the bidding process to demonstrate how they would be great partners with our organization." Union Broadcasting operates three stations in the Kansas City area, WHB 810 AM, KCTE 1510 AM and KPZL 97.3 FM. WHB, "America's Largest All Sports Radio Station," operates with a 50,000 watt daytime signal that reaches Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska and Oklahoma and a 5,000 watt nighttime signal. WHB is also the home to Major League Baseball's biggest events, including the Sunday Night Game of the Week, All-Star Game, Playoffs and World Series. Union Broadcasting, a locally owned company, has ownership that includes Royals Hall of Fame Pitcher Jeff Montgomery and former Royals outfielder Brian McRae. The ownership also includes Kevin Keitzman, whose show "Between The Lines" will serve as a lead-in to a majority of Royals games. "Today is the culmination of a lot of hard work by our staff, especially David Witty, and the three highly qualified radio entities," said Royals Senior Vice President-Business Operations, Mark Gorris. "We want to thank Entercom for six great seasons and next year we know Union Broadcasting will continue to increase the popularity of Royals baseball." The Royals will continue to expand the radio network to reach as many fans as possible throughout the Midwest. The network currently has 80 stations in eight states that include Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Wyoming and South Dakota. "As with our television strategy, our staff will now be working to maximize our new partnership and assure we bring the highest quality production to as many fans as possible throughout the region," Gorris added. "This includes adding affiliates in the key areas that we currently do not reach in our territory." During the upcoming months the Royals and Union Broadcasting will be discussing and making appropriate announcements regarding the personnel and production elements for the 2004 season. Union Broadcasting is the third company to hold the rights to the Royals Radio Network. Stauffer/Morris Communications and WIBW 580 AM in Topeka, Kan., served as the rightsholder and flagship station from 1975-97, while Entercom and KMBZ 980 AM held the rights and served as the flagship station from 1998- 2003. The Royals operated their radio network in-house from 1969-74. The Royals have been carried on KMBZ in Kansas City for 29 of their 35 seasons. The club was also on KCMO 810 AM from 1983-85 and WDAF 610 AM from 1992-94.