Tonight's World Series Game 6 has been postponed, forcing many sports fans to have to settle for UConn vs Pitt football on ESPN with Mark May & Lou Holtz in the booth. A great night for us and the Pammies... or a night to see if there's an NHL game on (darn, nothing but bull riding on Versus tonight). Game 6 has been moved to Thursday and a possible Game 7 would be played Friday night.
Maybe you would have been watching bull riding regardless. Unfortunately for MLB, the ratings news has been fairly grim as expected for this Cardinals-Rangers World Series. According to Sports Media Watch, the 2011 World Series is the third lowest rated of all-time through five games. They also had these interesting statistics:
"The 8.8 rating is tied as the lowest ever for Game 5 of the World Series, and the ninth-lowest for any World Series game. The Texas Rangers have now played in ten of the sixteen lowest rated World Series games of all time.
Over the past four seasons (dating back to 2008), only five of 21 World Series games have drawn a double-digit rating (24%). The World Series’ percentage trails that of other sports, including the NBA Finals (29%), NCAA Men’s Final Four (33%), and Bowl Championship Series (45%).
To put that in perspective, 220 of the previous 224 World Series games hit double-digits (98%)."
It's amazing to consider that drop. Suddenly, in the last four seasons, only a quarter of World Series games have reached double digit ratings. The very informative tvsportsratings Twitter page reports WS numbers are down 4% from last year's Giants/Rangers series as well.
MLB can cling to actually beating Sunday Night Football in the ratings this week. However, the Saints annihilated the Colts in one of the worst blowouts ever seen on national television, 62-7. That's as hollow of a "victory" in the ratings as I can imagine. To put it into further perspective, more people watched Two And A Half Men (the one without Charlie Sheen) and Dancing With The Stars than Game 5 of the World Series.
It's too bad for baseball that this year's World Series has been unable to draw television numbers and the sport still flounders without the Yanks or Sawx in the World Series. I suppose that's what MLB asks for though in constructing their sport to heavily favor those teams and allowing them to dominate the national baseball discussion.
This World Series has actually been very entertaining so far. Games 1 & 2 were decided by a run with Game 2 featuring a thrilling 9th inning Texas comeback. Albert Pujols had maybe the greatest World Series Game ever in Game 3, and Texas has battled back in Games 4 & 5.
Baseball's ratings have been struggling for some time... but why? What say you? Is it because the sport focuses too much on the big market teams and the Yanks & Sox? Is it because baseball isn't doing enough to market the games to young fans? Or, is it maybe because the World Series needs a drastic television makeover from Fox and a deliverance from Joe Buck and Tim McCarver? Comment it out and let us know what you think!