The baseball world got their wish: the New York Yankees are not in the World Series and parity played its part.
The San Francisco Giants with their 11th ranked payroll ($96,277,833), play host to the 25th ranked Texas Rangers ($64,810,570).
It is great to see new blood in the playoffs; however the ratings do not support that fact. Game 1 pulled in a rating of 8.9 (approx 15 million viewers).
Compared to the lowest-rated World Series, Philadelphia Phillies-Tampa Bay Rays, that’s a drop off of 3 percent, and a 25 percent drop from last year’s New York Yankees-Phillies series (also Game 1)
To make matters worse, the ratings from Game 2 were not any better.
Game 2 pulled in an 8.5 or nearly 14.5 million viewers—still a 26 percent decrease from last year's Game 2.
According to an article published in USA TODAY, Bud Selig still has high hopes for the remaining games:
"MLB commissioner Bud Selig told Sirius XM Radio's Chris "Mad Dog" Russo Thursday that Giants-Rangers will draw 'great ratings' if it can build to a competitive five-game, six-game, or ideally, seven-game series."
I have to sit on the fence on this one. On one side, this is great for baseball—new players and more exposure. On the other hand, the Yanks and the Boston Red Sox are nowhere to be found and it does make it feel quite empty this October.
Sure there are great players: Josh Hamilton, the once untouchable Cliff Lee, “The Freak” Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, and the ageless Edgar Renteria continuing to perform after 15 seasons.
There are also great teams: The Texas Rangers, who found themselves in dire straits financially, but stuck it out through 162 games; and the San Francisco Giants, looking for their first World Series title since 1954.
With all that said, for the viewers to be entertained and the ratings to increase, something magical needs to happen, and happen quickly.
Games 3 and 4 have to be ones for the ages. If Game 3 is a blowout with the Giants up 3-0 heading into Sunday night's game, competing head-to-head against Sunday Night Football, the numbers could be very, very unflattering.
This article can also be found on The GM's Perspective