World Series 2012 Ratings: Giants' Epic Run Isn't Reflected by Low Numbers

Ian HanfordFeatured ColumnistOctober 29, 2012

DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 28:  Angel Pagan #16, Marco Scutaro #19 and Ryan Theriot #5 of the San Francisco Giants celebrate with teammates after defeating the Detroit Tigers in the tenth inning to win Game Four of the Major League Baseball World Series at Comerica Park on October 28, 2012 in Detroit, Michigan. The San Francisco Giants defeated the Detroit Tigers 4-3 in the tenth inning to win the World Series in 4 straight games.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

If you watched the San Francisco Giants' 2012 World Series run from start to finish, you know what you saw.

The team's path was controlled by destiny, timely performances and a bit of luck in between. People who chose not to watch this year's World Series missed the culmination of that run, resulting in a disappointing set of television ratings for this year's four-game sweep.

According to The Associated Press (per San Jose Mercury News), this year's World Series set a record-low in terms of television ratings:

The four games on Fox averaged a 7.6 rating and 12 share, Nielsen Media Research said Monday. The previous low was an 8.4 for the 2008 Phillies-Rays and 2010 Giants-Rangers series, which each went five games.

Last year's Cardinals-Rangers World Series went the full seven games and built momentum to average a 10.0/16.

The Giants' 2-0 win in Game 3 on Saturday earned a 6.1/11, and their 4-3, 10-inning victory in the clincher Sunday drew an 8.9/14.

The report mentions that "Ratings represent the percentage of all homes with TVs tuned into a program. Shares represent the percentage watching among all homes with TVs in use at the time."

This series had everything. Detroit brought Triple-Crown winner Miguel Cabrera to the fold, along with baseball's best pitcher in Justin Verlander. That should have added to the appeal that the Giants brought to the table.

San Francisco is the ultimate underdog. The team was pieced together with duct tape and chicken wire, but the players understood what it took to win.

The Giants are a baseball purist's dream. This is what it's all about, not some franchise with a gaudy payroll mowing its way to another championship. The Giants did it this way in 2010, and the recipe held true again in 2012.

Being down two games to zero to the Cincinnati Reds in the National League Division Series was supposed to be the end of the road for this squad. Instead, they returned to Cincinnati and stole three straight games from the Reds on the road.

The same thing happened to this resilient group against the one franchise that can match their mettle—the St. Louis Cardinals. Going down three games to one to Mike Matheny's stingy team had most hearing death knells out of the Bay Area, but this team wouldn't be denied yet again. Three consecutive wins later, and the Giants were in their second World Series in three years.

The Giants' sweep of the Tigers was remarkable. San Francisco entered the World Series behind some serious magic, but Detroit's four-game sweep over the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series was magical in itself.

It's not like the Giants showed up and crushed an ailing team. Detroit was favored by many, mostly based on its star power. Watching the Giants systematically derail their AL opponent was stunning.

With the low TV ratings coming to light, I've learned that this World Series was truly unique because it produced two losers. Detroit missed its chances at a championship, and everyone who chose not to tune in missed an extremely fitting conclusion to one of the best postseason runs in recent memory.