MLB All-Star Game Sets New Record Low, Falls Further Behind Pro Bowl

Posted by | July 13, 2011 at 4:55 PM

For the fifth time in the past decade, the Major League Baseball All-Star Game set an all new record low in the ratings.

The 2011 MLB All-Star Game drew a 6.9 final rating and 10.97 million viewers on FOX Tuesday night, down 8% in ratings and 9% in viewership from last year (7.5, 12.118M), and down 23% and 25%, respectively, from 2009 (8.9, 14.593M).

The game ranks as the lowest rated, least-viewed MLB All-Star Game ever. The previous lows were set last year.

Since the 1994 MLB strike, ratings for the MLB All-Star Game have set or tied a record low ten times — in 1995 (13.9), 1996 (13.2), 1997 (11.8), 2000 (10.1), 2002 (9.5), 2003 (9.5), 2004 (8.8), 2005 (8.1), 2010 (7.5) and 2011 (6.9).

The All-Star Game drew a lower rating and fewer viewers than the 2011 NFL Pro Bowl on FOX (7.7, 13.046M), but still managed to top the 2011 NBA All-Star Game on TNT (5.2, 9.093M) and the 2011 NHL All-Star Game on Versus (0.8, 1.481M).

This is the second straight year the MLB All-Star Game has attracted fewer viewers than the oft-maligned Pro Bowl.

Despite the record low numbers, the MLB All-Star Game still compares favorably to some marquee sporting events. Tuesday’s game drew more viewers than all but three games of the 2010 MLB League Championship Series, all but one game of the 2011 NBA Conference Finals, all but one game of the 2011 NCAA Tournament Elite Eight, every game of the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final, and the 2011 Fiesta and Orange Bowls.

The All-Star Game also drew a higher rating than Game 3 of last year’s World Series (SF/TEX: 6.7), which was the second-lowest rated World Series game ever.

In the key adults 18-49 demographic, the game drew a 3.1 rating — down 18% from last year (3.8) and down 34% from 2009 (4.7). Both the Pro Bowl (4.7) and NBA All-Star Game (4.0) drew higher ratings in the demo.

In both total viewers and adults 18-49, the All-Star Game was outdrawn Tuesday night by America’s Got Talent on NBC (14.07M, 4.0 A18-49).

(This year’s numbers from FOX Sports via TV By the Numbers; additional information from TV By the Numbers)

  • Chad

    If I can defend the Orange and Fiesta bowls, those games were on a cable channel and the MLB all star game was on broadcast tv.

  • Zxbaker81

    I think the Pro Bowl is even more boring the the All Star Game

  • Hrana Cc

    Why do they play the game on a Tuesday night? Wouldn’t it make sense to play on a Sunday night where you can get better ratings. The NBA and NHL do this. Put the future and old timers game on Friday, Home run derby Saturday night and the game on Sunday night and make it an all star weekend. Of course it does not help that some of the top players did not play but I think you would get better ratings if the game is played on a Sunday night rather than on a Tuesday night. Plus pitchers can pitch an inning if they pitch on Thursday.

    • Chad

      The only problem I would see with that is probably the weekend when more fans go to baseball games and owners wouldn’t want to lose that money.

  • Anonymous

    The most telling comparison isn’t with US-centric sports. The final of the Gold Cup (Copa de Oro) soccer tournament, USA vs. Mexico, drew 10 million viewers to Univision on Saturday night, June 25.

    Univision is a Spanish channel and doesn’t have one-third the broadcast coverage of the Big 4, yet its main summer sports special nearly upstaged baseball’s Midsummer Classic.

  • Bessilver

    I can also defend NBA All Star Game.  Game was aired on cable channel (TNT), MLB All Star game was on broadcast TV.