TAMPA, FLA. – Just their luck, four days after signing a new TV contract with Bally Sports North, the Twins heard an enticing sales pitch from another potential broadcaster.

OK, technically MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred wasn't trying to lure the Twins away from BSN, he was simply talking up, during his annual spring training news conference, the league's rescue of Padres and Diamondbacks telecasts last summer after their own Bally Sports networks dropped them midseason.

But it probably held plenty of appeal for cord-cutting Twins fans who still don't have an affordable option to watch their favorite team.

"Any club that Diamond [Sports Group, bankrupt parent company of 19 Bally's-branded regional sports networks] walks away from, we will be in a position to support them, both within the traditional cable model and on the digital side of the house," Manfred said Thursday. "It doesn't matter if it's three more [teams] or 10 more, we will handle them. That's the most important point — our fans will be able to see their games."

That's a meaningful guarantee, given that Diamond's current plan to emerge from bankruptcy and remain in business hinges upon receiving a $150 million investment from Amazon, a deal that is not yet official and might not be for several months.

It's also comforting reassurance from a logical broadcasting partner for the Twins in 2025 and beyond. Manfred has stated several times his goal to create "one-stop shopping" for MLB games, a way for fans to stream any game, any team, anywhere, for a reasonable price. The Twins, with no broadcasting commitment beyond this year, are considered a likely participant in such a product, and Manfred said fans won't be disappointed.

"The look of the games from San Diego and Arizona last year was really, really good. I think it's done more efficiently than the RSNs were doing them, which is a good thing from a financial perspective," Manfred said. "The availability of MLB.TV in market is a huge advantage to our fans. Lots and lots of people have made the decision to cut the cord and don't have access to games, and that digital product can reach those fans."

Manfred said the need to provide a streaming option — which the Twins' one-year contract with BSN does not fulfill — is becoming urgent.

"It's a question of reach. You've got to get the games in the household, and the economics of the broadcast in some ways are secondary to the rest of our business," he said. "Think about it this way — if there's a house with young kids, and they're cord-cutters with no way to watch baseball, it's unlikely that those kids are going to be fans and are going to be after their parents to go to a game. You have to look at it big-picture, over the longer term."

Still, he said, baseball is not giving up on the traditional cable TV model of offering games. That system, in which every cable subscriber pays a fee for sports channels whether they want them or not, is the most lucrative way to broadcast games, providing the Twins $54 million per season for the past decade.

"Our goal is to preserve what is the remainder of legacy cable bundle," Manfred said. "The economics of that bundle are really important to us. There are some people, including Rob Manfred, who will be clutching that cable remote until they die. I do, however, recognize that there are a lot of people, for reasons completely unrelated to baseball or any programming, for fundamental economic reasons, opt out of that cable bundle.

"We have to serve those people."

On other topics, Manfred also said he remains confident that the Oakland Athletics will build a new stadium in Las Vegas and open as planned in 2028. But the league also needs a definitive plan soon for where the team will play from 2025 to '27, once their lease at Oakland Coliseum expires.

"The [next year's] schedule gets finalized July-ish," Manfred said. "We need to know exactly where they're going to be because it will impact travel issues."

The A's have explored several sites, including Oracle Park, home of the Giants, and minor league parks in Las Vegas, Sacramento and Salt Lake City.

The commissioner also reiterated his intention to retire when his current term expires after the 2028 season, when he will be 70.

And he said he is not pleased that several of the most-sought free agents remain unsigned as training camps open.

"We would prefer to have a free-agent signing period, probably in December, with a deadline that drove people to make their deals and get things settled," Manfred said. "We actually made proposals to that effect to the MLBPA [in 2022], but they were not warmly received."

Without such a deadline, "one of the tactics that's available to player representatives is to stretch out negotiations in the belief they're going to get a better deal. That's part of the system and there's not a lot we can do about it," the commissioner said. "We'd rather have two weeks of flurried activity in December, preferably around the winter meetings, so we all get excited about the next year. That'll be part of the next go-around" of negotiations after the 2026 season.