Summary: Despite declines in previous rounds, the League Championship Series of MLB is maintaining solid ratings, with an average of 5.2 million viewers for the first two games. The absence of teams from major TV markets and top regular-season records hasn’t impacted ratings. The ALCS opener between Texas and Houston garnered 7.27 million viewers, the most-viewed since 2010. The strong lead-in from an NFL doubleheader also contributed to higher ratings. The wild-card and division rounds saw declines due to scheduling differences.
Baseball’s League Championship Series (LCS) is proving to be a ratings success, with steady viewership despite declines in previous rounds. The LCS English and Spanish broadcasts for the first two games are averaging 5.2 million viewers, which is on par with last year’s figures.
Despite not having any teams from the major TV markets of New York, Chicago, or Los Angeles, as well as the absence of the top regular-season records, LCS ratings remain strong. This is the first time since 2014 that the LCS round does not include teams from the country’s three largest TV markets. Commissioner Rob Manfred believes that having a variety of teams competing is good for the sport.
The ALCS opener between the Texas Rangers and the Houston Astros drew 7.27 million viewers, the highest for an opening game in the ALCS since 2010. This marks a 28% increase from last year’s opening game between the Astros and the New York Yankees. The game benefited from a strong lead-in with an NFL doubleheader on Fox, which averaged 26.09 million viewers in the late afternoon window.
However, ratings in the previous rounds experienced declines. The wild-card round, broadcasted on ESPN and ABC, saw an 18% decrease from last year. The Division Series, aired on TBS, Fox, and FS1, also saw an 8.8% decline. These declines can be attributed to scheduling differences, as the wild-card games took place during the week instead of the weekend, like previous years.
Despite these declines, the NLDS between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Atlanta Braves drew significant viewership, with an average of 4.6 million viewers, making it the most-watched NLDS on TBS in eight years. The Phillies’ 10-0 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the NLCS second game also attracted an average of 5.3 million viewers on TBS, TruTV, and Max.
Tags: MLB, League Championship Series, ratings, viewership, ALCS, wild-card, Division Series, Philadelphia Phillies, scheduling differences, variety