Unblock MLB.tv Blackouts: The Ultimate VPN Troubleshooting Guide

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Written by

Jason Lin
Jason Lin

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Mlb Tv Vpn Not Working

Struggling to make your VPN work with MLB.tv? This guide covers every potential fix to get your streams running again, fast.

Frustrated baseball fans know that MLB.tv blackout restrictions can ruin the experience of watching your favorite team. While using a VPN is the go-to workaround, what happens when it stops working with MLB.tv streams?

As a long-time MLB.tv and VPN user myself, I’ve run into just about every streaming and blackout pitfall over the years. I’ll leverage my first-hand experience to clearly explain common MLB.tv streaming problems, walk through VPN troubleshooting steps, and showcase the best VPNs to help you unlock blacked out games this season.

Whether from personal use or assisting friends, I’ve discovered proven methods to resolve nearly any MLB.tv streaming or VPN issue. Read on to troubleshoot your own setup and enjoy blackout-free baseball streams again in no time.

Why Does My VPN Not Work With MLB.tv?

Before we dig into the various fixes, it helps to understand the reasons why your VPN may have stopped working properly with MLB.tv in the first place:

Outdated VPN App

Like any software, VPN apps push regular updates to squash bugs and enhance performance. Using an outdated VPN app version can definitely cause compatibility issues or glitches when trying to stream MLB.tv.

Server Congestion

At peak times when huge numbers of fans flood MLB.tv, VPN servers can also get overloaded and struggle to channel all that streaming traffic smoothly. Particularly for free VPNs or smaller providers.

Blacklisted VPN Servers

MLB.tv does actively work to detect and block connections from known VPN servers to enforce its blackout policy. An outdated server list from your VPN provider likely contains IP addresses already flagged and banned by MLB.tv.

Software Conflicts

Incompatible apps running simultaneously alongside your VPN can sometimes create software conflicts, preventing them from working properly together. Shutting down other programs first often helps VPN streams run smoother.

Bad Internet Connection

Unsteady wifi or a generally poor internet connection hampers performance for data-heavy video streaming through a VPN tunnel. Few things are more frustrating than an unstable stream!

Regional Sports Network Restrictions

Local MLB broadcasts require specific TV provider credentials to unlock, which VPNs cannot bypass on their own. Read more on watching regional MLB networks on services like Sling TV.

Now let’s explore how to address each and restore your access to MLB.tv!

How to Fix VPN Issues on MLB.tv

Here are the 12 most effective troubleshooting steps to resolve the majority of VPN/MLB.tv streaming problems:

1. Update Your VPN App

The easiest potential fix is ensuring you have downloaded the latest version of your VPN app, which may contain crucial bug patches, stability improvements and changes to get around MLB.tv blackout detection.

  • To update on an iPhone, open the App Store > Profile > Check for available updates.
  • On Android, use the Play Store > Profile > Manage apps & games.
  • For desktop apps, find the update settings in the app menu.
Google Play Update App

Updating is quick and usually preserves your existing app login, server favorites and settings.

2. Reinstall Your VPN App

If updating fails to help, the next step is wiping out any glitched files by fully uninstalling then re-downloading a fresh VPN app from their website or app store.

This essentially provides a clean slate, clearing away any accumulated digital cobwebs causing conflicts. After reinstalling, sign in again and test if MLB.tv now works properly through the VPN app.

3. Restart Your Device

Before getting too deep into troubleshooting, try the classic initial step of simply turning your computer, phone or streaming device off and back on again. Like blowing into an old Nintendo cartridge!

Samsung Phone Restart

Restarting flushes out memory leaks or background processes that can interfere with streaming performance. After the reboot, launch your VPN app again and see if MLB.tv streams smoothly through the VPN tunnel.

4. Delete Cookies & Cache

Over time, excess cookies and cached data stored by MLB.tv can create lag and impact stream functionality. Wiping this temporary storage gives the streaming platform a fresh start, which tends to go hand in hand with the VPN app after a reinstallation as well.

  • On Chrome use Settings > Privacy & Security > Clear Browsing Data
Chrome Clear Data
  • For Safari head to Settings > Privacy > Website Data > Remove All Website Data
Safari Remove All Website Data
  • In Firefox access Settings > Privacy & Security > Clear Data
Firefox clear Data

Then reload MLB.tv to assess if wiping the slate clean fixed VPN streaming.

5. Connect to a Different VPN Server

Specific VPN servers can become congested during peak streaming hours, develop technical problems or get blocked by streaming platforms over time. Quickly switching connection to another server in the same region often resolves VPN/MLB.tv issues.

Inside your VPN app, disconnect from your current server and select another nearby one instead to channel the streaming traffic. For the purpose of avoiding MLB.tv blackouts, just choose the next closest VPN server located in a major city inside the approved broadcast territory.

Then refresh MLB.tv after a minute to see if the server swap worked to restore stream functionality.

6. Contact VPN Customer Support

Reliable VPN providers have an interest in ensuring their service interoperates well with popular platforms like MLB.tv for customer satisfaction and retention. Their customer support teams deal with streaming site integrations daily.

Therefore, engaging VPN customer support provides another troubleshooting resource to uncover the specifics glitches between their application and MLB.tv streams.

Submit a support ticket through your VPN account dashboard or use the live chat box to communicate directly with an agent. Support staff can advise the best custom settings or niche workarounds for accessing MLB.tv undeterred.

7. Whitelist Your VPN

As mentioned earlier, MLB.tv tries to actively detect and block traffic from known VPN servers to enforce regional blackout restrictions based on user location tracking.

Some VPN providers offer whitelisted servers or IP addresses specially configured to bypass common streaming blocks.

Ask your VPN provider customer support if they operate any “whitelisted, streaming-optimized” servers that embrace protocols less susceptible to blacklists for accessing MLB.tv abroad. Connecting to these special VPN IPs helps fly under the radar.

8. Clear Flash Cookies

Less routine maintenance that occasionally boosts MLB.tv stream functionality is clearing out standalone flash browser cookies. These cookies accumulate from running flash videos/apps and can create playback conflicts separate from your main browser cookies.

  • In Chrome head to Settings > Site Settings > Flash > Website Storage Settings.
Chrome Clear Flash Cookies
  • For Firefox visit Options/Settings > Privacy & Security > Remove Individual Cookies
Firefox manage Data
  • Safari lacks built-in flash so no action needed.

Reconnect the VPN then check if wiping flash cookies alone solves your MLB.tv streaming issues.

9. Toggle VPN Protocols

Some VPN apps allow switching between protocols – OpenVPN, L2TP, IKEv2, which channel your traffic through different types of encrypted tunnels. MLB.tv seems to jive better with certain protocols.

Inside VPN app settings, under Advanced Options (locations vary app to app), toggle between protocols like IKEv2 or OpenVPN TCP to see if one provides an MLB.tv streaming experience devoid of buffering or lag spikes. Learn more about VPN protocols from Firestick to LG smart TVs here.

10. Update VPN Router Firmware

If streaming MLB.tv through a VPN router, check the admin dashboard to ensure you have the latest firmware / VPN protocol packages / app running.

Server-client relationships can get buggy over time. Updating to the newest firmware containing fresh stability fixes could instantly upgrade VPN router performance for smooth MLB.tv streams to all your connected devices.

11. Whitelist MLB.tv

Inversely from the popular “whitelist your VPN” tactic, some VPN apps provide an “Allowed Apps” feature that lets you whitelist specific apps to channel through the tunnel.

Navigate there on your app’s Settings page and input mlb.tv as a whitelisted domain/app to test if it resolves quirks related to routing MLB.tv streams through the VPN specifically.

12. Reset VPN Modem/Router

As a last resort, fully resetting an asynchronous VPN modem router clears out any tangled up app associations preventing proper MLB.tv functionality.

Use the hardware reset button on the back to restore factory settings. The nuclear option, but can work magic if other troubleshooting failed to resuscitate your VPN/MLB.tv streaming.

Resetting Your Router

Best VPNs for Accessing MLB.tv Abroad

Based on extensive first-hand testing and feedback from the avid MLB fan community, these rank as the top 3 VPNs for accessing MLB.tv streams worldwide:

1. ExpressVPN


With bulletproof encryption, blazing speeds and stealthy protocols to avoid VPN blocks, ExpressVPN hits nothing but home runs streaming MLB.tv abroad every season.


✔ 160+ VPN server locations worldwide

✔ Unlimited bandwidth

✔ Top streaming speeds

✔ Stealth protocol to avoid VPN blocks

✔ 256-bit AES encryption

✔ Apps for all devices

✔ 24/7 customer support

Get 49% off ExpressVPN

Want it on the big screen? Learn about all the ways to get ExpressVPN on your TV like Firestick, Roku, Chromecast and more.

2. NordVPN


Thousands of VPN servers across the globe give NordVPN flexibility to find ones that play nice with MLB.tv. Unique specialty servers provide extra options.


✔ 5,000+ global VPN servers

✔ Onion over VPN for anonymous streaming

✔ Obfuscated servers to bypass blocks

✔ P2P & Double VPN servers

✔ 256-bit AES encryption

✔ Apps for all devices

✔ 24/7 customer support

Get the latest NordVPN deal here

3. Surfshark


With access to over 3,200 worldwide VPN servers and custom streaming configuration, Surfshark reliably tunnels MLB.tv abroad on any device.


✔ 3,200+ VPN server locations

✔ CleanWeb ad & malware blocking

✔ Whitelister tool for streaming sites

✔ 256-bit AES encryption

✔ Unlimited connections

✔ 24/7 customer support

Sign up for Surfshark here

Key Takeaways: Fixing VPNs for MLB.tv

To quickly summarize the vital troubleshooting steps:

  • Update VPN app to latest version
  • Try connecting to different nearby VPN servers
  • Clear cookies/cache from MLB.tv before streaming
  • Toggle VPN protocols like IKEv2 or OpenVPN TCP
  • Contact VPN provider support for personalized fixes

Following the sequential tips in this guide will help identify then resolve the underlying cause of most VPN/MLB.tv streaming issues certain to arise over the long baseball season.

Some platforms, such as DirecTV Stream, also carry regional sports networks like YES and NESN. See also how to watch MLB on DirecTV.

MLB.tv VPN Troubleshooting FAQs

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about ironing out VPN problems for accessing MLB.tv:

What if MLB.tv says the game is blacked out despite using my VPN?

Double check to ensure your VPN app is actually connected before loading MLB.tv. Some allow quick disconnects which can cause confusion. Also confirm MLB.tv shows your IP address from the VPN server location rather than actual ISP.

Can I be banned from MLB.tv for using a VPN?

MLB.tv’s terms do prohibit VPNs. However, we’ve never seen users banned purely for VPN access alone, since they don’t want to lose the subscription fee. Just create an account with legit US location data.

Why does my VPN router not work properly with MLB.tv?

Like VPN apps themselves, dedicated streaming router firmware can grow outdated, develop quirks over time and run into conflicts. Try updating to latest firmware or reset to factory settings.

Will using a free VPN provide enough speed to stream MLB.tv HD?

Likely not. Free VPNs cut costs by overloading servers, meaning insufficient capacity during peak times. This leads to constant buffering and connection drops while streaming. A premium VPN is strongly recommended.

Can I use a VPN on iPhone to watch in-market live MLB games?

Unfortunately even VPNs cannot circumvent the iOS MLB app GPS location check for watching in-market live games. You’ll need to jailbreak the iPhone in order bypass blackouts, or use a desktop browser with the VPN active instead.

Still have questions? Drop them in the comments section below!

Hopefully walking through all the potential trouble spots helps resolve the VPN headaches interfering with your MLB.tv streaming. Now just sit back and enjoy the boys of summer!