Even taking into account the tough competition, Monday’s Game 7 of the National League Championship Series earned extremely low numbers on FOX.
Game 7 of the Cardinals/Giants National League Championship Series drew a 5.9 overnight rating, down 41% from Red Sox/Rays Game 7 on TBS in 2008 (10.0), and down 56% from Indians/Red Sox Game 7 on FOX in 2007 (13.5).
The 5.9 also marks a 52% decline from the most recent NLCS Game 7, Cardinals/Mets on FOX in 2006 (12.4).
Monday’s game will almost certainly finish as the lowest rated Game 7 of a League Championship Series.
Game 7 was hurt by a variety of factors, not the least of which was competition from the presidential debate on various networks and the Lions/Bears “Monday Night Football” game on ESPN. The debate clearly had an impact, as Monday’s overnight peaked at a 6.9 from 8:30 to the start of the debate at 9 PM.
“Monday Night Football” also had a major impact on the numbers. The overnight rating for Lions/Bears — on cable — (7.3) was 24% higher than the 5.9 for Game 7.
The previous two Game 7 telecasts also aired opposite NFL coverage (“Sunday Night Football” on NBC) but won both head-to-head battles. In 2008, Red Sox/Rays topped Seahawks/Buccaneers by 39% (10.0 to 7.2). In 2007, Indians/Red Sox beat Steelers/Broncos by 44% (13.5 to 9.4).
Also contributing to the low numbers is the fact that Cardinals/Giants was simply a mediocre draw. The only year-over-year increases for the series benefited from built-in advantages (two Sunday night games were up from Saturday night games a year ago, and Friday’s primetime Game 5 was up from an afternoon Game 5 last year).
Locally, Game 7 earned a 31.8 rating in St. Louis and a 27.5 in the Bay Area.
(Monday’s numbers from Sports Business Daily)