ESPN starts Los Angeles Spanish website

ESPN starts Los Angeles Spanish website

By Eric Fisher, Staff Writer


The site will include a heavier focus on international soccer and boxing.
ESPN has created its first Spanish-language local website, ESPNDeportesLA.com, marking a further expansion of its market-specific digital strategy.

Acting as a mirror of sorts of the 17-month-old ESPNLosAngeles.com, ESPNDeportesLA.com will provide Spanish-language coverage of Los Angeles-area sports, including beat reports for the Dodgers, Angels, Lakers, Clippers, Galaxy and Chivas USA.

But far from a mere translation of the site’s English-language counterpart,
ESPNDeportesLA.com will also have a heavier focus on international soccer and boxing, and also will have two writers based in Mexico City producing content targeted specifically to the large Mexican-American population in greater Los Angeles.

In addition, multimedia and social media extensions to the site will be prominent.

ESPNDeportesLA.com will begin with a dedicated content staff of 12. Among them is Rafa Ramos, previously a reporter and columnist for prominent Spanish-language newspaper La Opinion, and a panelist on “Juego Cruzado,” ESPN Deportes’ version of “Around The Horn.”

“We say a lot that our mission, very simply, is to serve the sports fan. And you can’t really serve the sports fan in Los Angeles without having a meaningful Spanish-language presence,” said Traug Keller, ESPN Deportes senior vice president of programming and production.

The site was created in partnership with Time Warner Cable, with whom ESPN will hold a joint sales relationship for advertising on ESPNDeportesLA.com. Initial sponsors include Wells Fargo, Toyota and the California State Lottery.
Mobile extensions for ESPNDeportesLA.com are under development.

Much like the graduated rollout of the five English-language ESPN local sites over the past two years — Chicago, Boston, New York, Dallas and Los Angeles — ESPNDeportesLA.com will start with no firm commitment toward similar launches in other markets.

“We’ll be taking it one step at a time,” Keller said. “But we’re very eager to get this going and learn a lot about how we approach this.”