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Series Ratings Abysmal

The ratings for the Phillies-Rays World Series were expected to reach an all-time low -- and they did. The five-game Series set a record with an 8.4 rating and 14 share -- down 17 percent from the previous low (a 10.1 for the 2006 Tigers-Cardinals Series). A long rain delay and a suspended game didn't help.

From the Associated Press:

"This World Series got off to a solid start last week and was poised to build momentum as we expected it to," Fox Sports president Ed Goren said. "The rain delay on Saturday and suspended game on Monday, combined with only going five games, obviously worked against the Series reaching its maximum viewership potential, but even with that, FOX was No. 1 most nights, posted some of its best nights in many weeks and was No. 1 last week in prime time."
Game 5 was the first suspended game in World Series history, starting Monday and concluding two days later. The final innings Wednesday earned an 11.9/18, and the entire game averaged a 9.6/14, the highest of the Series.
Game 3, which didn't start until after 10 p.m. on the East Coast on Saturday because of rain, received a record-low 6.1 rating.

"We had a very good rating (Wednesday)," MLB Commissioner Bud Selig said. "There's no question that if the Series had gone further, the ratings would have gone up."

By Tracee Hamilton  |  October 31, 2008; 9:00 AM ET
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There is an easy way to increase ratings. Do not alienate fan base by showing the games so late. The games can start at 7pm and be fine. The East Coast viewers (your biggest audience) can see the whole game before they go to bed. And the West Coast viewers, at worst, will be able to catch the last 5 innings of the game which is the most exciting part anyway. When games start past 8:30pm on a workday, people cannot watch the whole game. Their bodies are at their "breaking point" and they go to sleep. Start the games earlier and the ratings will rise.

Posted by: SameDifference | October 31, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

For one thing, there is a presidential election going on. While baseball would offer a respite from that stuff, this particular election is historic.

Another, the Yankees and/or Red Sox werent' involved. You may love/hate either but they draw an audience.

Posted by: itsagreatday1 | October 31, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

This year's World Series was a five game advertisement for why MLB must have instant replay by next year. With the availability of today's technologies viewers are no longer willing to put up with bad calls at bases or umpires personal strike zones that are six inches off the plate. The purists say that using instant replay would ruin the integrity of the game. I believe that without instant replay the game will continue to loose popularity and will simply go away.

Posted by: mike85 | October 31, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

...........that's because you can't tackle anyone in baseball.

Posted by: tedjulinski | October 31, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

I'm a lifelong Phillies fanatic, and McCarver was our catcher in 1980, but I have to really grit my teeth to watch him broadcast games. Aside from his inane comments and baseball "insights" obvious to a 2-year-old, sample two very confused verbal formulations from game one: "all things considered equal" and "in lieu of" [when he presumably meant 'in light of']. Do you think we could have Vin Scully do the World Series on tv someday, and, you know, reward talent and intelligence?

Posted by: dougkahn | October 31, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

The same technology used to show the strike or ball around the plate can be used to call balls and strikes. This makes the behind the plate Blind-Tom obsolete. Some of the balls and stike calls were so blatently slanted toward the Phillies, I was wondering if Vinnie Gambino had already determined the outcome of this series.

Posted by: 6thandD | October 31, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

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