After hitting a series-low on Saturday night, the 2011 World Series bounced back to a series-high on Sunday.
Sunday’s Cardinals/Rangers Game 4 drew a 9.2 final rating and 15.156 million viewers on FOX, up 2% in ratings and down 3% in viewership from last year (SF/TEX G4: 9.0, 15.537M), and down 32% and 33%, respectively, from 2009 (NYY/PHI G4: 13.5, 22.761M).
Game 4 earned the highest rating for a non-Yankee World Series game since Rays/Phillies Game 5 in 2008 (9.6). The 2008 game began on a Monday night, was suspended due to rain, and concluded two nights later.
Having said that, the 9.2 rating is the second-lowest ever for a Sunday night World Series game, ahead of only last year.
Though low compared to previous World Series, the numbers for the Cardinals/Rangers matchup have been solid relative to other sporting events. Sunday’s game finished not-too-far behind Game 4 of the Heat/Mavericks NBA Finals in June (9.6, 16.126M), and Games 1, 2 and 4 of the series easily topped college football’s Fiesta (6.3), Orange (6.7) and Sugar (8.2) bowls.
In addition, Game 4 likely finished ahead of the Colts/Saints Sunday Night Football game on NBC, which drew an 8.2 overnight rating. Final numbers for the Saints’ 62-7 win were not immediately available.
Among adults 18-49, Game 4 drew a 4.2 rating — down a tick from last year (4.3), and down 46% from 2009 (7.8).
Locally, Game 4 earned a 45.4 rating in St. Louis, down 12% from Tigers/Cardinals Game 4 in 2006 (51.3), which aired on a Thursday night.
In Dallas-Ft. Worth, the game drew a 39.1 rating — up 24% from last year’s Giants/Rangers Game 4 (31.5). By comparison, Game 4 of this year’s Mavericks/Heat NBA Finals drew a 30.5 rating, and Game 4 of the 2006 Heat/Mavericks series drew a 31.0.
One factor in the local ratings was the Rams/Cowboys NFL game, which aired in the 3:15 PM CT window in both St. Louis and Dallas-Ft. Worth.
Through Game 4, the 2011 World Series has averaged an 8.2 rating and 13.5 million viewers on FOX, down a tick in ratings and 4% in viewership from the comparable point last year (8.3, 14.1M), and down 29% in both measures compared to 2009 (11.5, 19.1M).
Cardinals/Rangers ranks as the second-lowest rated, second-least viewed World Series of all-time, ahead of only Phillies/Rays in 2008 (8.1, 13.2M).
Ratings and viewership for Game 3 of the series are available here.
UPDATE 10/25/10: Updated viewership information and added adults 18-49 rating.