World-series-chicago-cubs-at-cleveland-in.3

World Series' Epic Game 7 Is Most-Watched in Quarter Century


by David Tanklefsky  |  11.03.2016

We’re not going to see another one like that for a very, very long time.

The Homeric 2016 World Series reached its historic conclusion in the early hours of Thursday morning when Mike Montgomery retired Michael Martinez on a slow-moving groundball to Kris Bryant. With that, the most celebrated curse—that of the billy goat—in American sports history came to an end.

It was a shockingly mundane final out in a battle that will go down as one of the defining games in the history of the sport. We saw one of the most dramatic postseason homers ever, in Rajai Davis’s game-tying two-run shot with two outs in the eighth. We saw grandpa David Ross, the 39-year-old Cubbies backstop, launch a homer off the most unhittable pitcher in the playoffs, Indians reliever Andrew Miller, in his final big league at-bat. We saw insane managerial gambles, leadoff homers and gratuitous Bill Murray cutaways.

This one was bigger than baseball. Hell, it was bigger than football in a time where nothing is bigger than football, recent trends notwithstanding. Unsurprisingly, ratings were massive.

The game drew 40.015 million viewers, making it the most-watched game in 25 years, dating back to another classic, the 1991 Twins/Braves contest that drew 40.8 million viewers in Game 6 and an astonishing 50.3 million for Game 7. That final game also ended in extra innings, with Minnesota winning a 1-0 pitcher’s duel on a walk-off single by Gene Larkin.

Last night’s game delivered a 25.2 rating/40 share, according to Nielsen, making it the highest-rated World Series game in 15 years, going back to another epic, 2001’s Diamondbacks/Yankees Game 7 (27.0/38). Last night’s game blew away the previous high from this series, Sunday night’s Game 5 (15.3) by a whopping 65 percent.

The series as a whole averaged a 14.9/25 in metered markets, making it the highest average rating since another unfathomably long curse was broken when the Red Sox beat the Cardinals in 2004 (17.3/26).

In the social media age, where baseball has been criticized for its numbingly long games and its lack of superstars, MLB proved its relevance, besting Game 7 of this year’s NBA Finals between the Cavs and Warriors (15.8/29) and regularly outperforming primetime football throughout the Series. Game 7 was the most-watched telecast in America this year outside of the Super Bowl.

In the local markets, the numbers were astronomical. In Cleveland, Game 7 earned a 48.6/69 rating, astonishing numbers when you consider their team was down by four runs in the fifth and three in the eighth. In the Windy City, the game drew a 51.2 rating and a 71 share, the highest baseball game on record. The rating in Chicago is the highest ever for a World Series clinching game in a two-team market. It was still behind a number of single-team markets, including the Red Sox in 2004 (59.0).

But with Wrigleyville still in a state of euphoria and a parade planned for tomorrow expected to draw millions, it’s hard to believe last night didn’t go 100/100 in Chicago.

← Back

New from Daily Brief

'In And Out of Dreaming': Jay Curtis Captures His Experience of ALS Through Poetry
Longtime PromaxBDA member (and former employee) Creative Lifeguard Curtis deals with his diagnosis with humor and grace.
Tim Roth Seeks Revenge in Bloody ‘Tin Star’ Promo
A new oil refinery bring drugs, prostitution and murder to a small town in Sky Atlantic’s graphic teaser.
Gordon Ramsay Goes Live in ‘The F Word’
Promo by BRKLY highlights the celebrity chef’s fun side for Fox’s new food variety show.
HOT SPOT: Main Titles for Ukrainian Documentary 'Children of Victory'
Children at play are juxtaposed against violent images of war in 1+1 Design's opening sequence.
Networks Respond to the Rise of Dramas in Latin America
Top executives explain the evolution of TV series in the region and new development models geared toward international distribution.
Netflix Plans to Triple Number of Series Produced Outside U.S.
Will increase original co-productions focusing on global stories told from local perspectives.
Jun 5
The Conference 2017
Jun 8
PromaxBDA Promotion, Marketing and Design North America Awards 2017
Jun 8
PromaxBDA Promotion, Marketing and Design Global Excellence Awards 2017
Jun 19
Station Summit 2017
Jun 22
The PromaxBDA Awards at Station Summit
FG|PG Advertisement Power Your Career Advertisement