Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

World Series Game 7 delivers second-highest rating for MLB in 13 years

Alex Reimer
November 02, 2017 - 11:51 am

The Astros’ Game 7 victory over the Dodgers Wednesday might have been anticlimactic end to an epic World Series. But the four-run snoozefest still delivered massive ratings for MLB.

The contest delivered an 18.8 overnight rating on FOX, which is the second-best number since Red Sox-Cardinals Game 4 in 2004 (19.7). Last year’s dramatic Game 7 between the Cubs and Indians, which went into extra innings and concluded with the Cubs hoisting their first World Series championship since 1908, scored a 25.2 overnight number.

Though the rating number might be a slight disappointment for MLB, it’s still the highest number for any non-NFL sporting event this year. It’s also the fourth-highest this decade, excluding the NFL and Olympic Games.

There’s no doubt baseball’s demographics aren’t favorable for long-term growth. The average baseball viewer is 57 years old, meaning the game has a big problem when it comes to attracting younger audiences. But sports viewers are graying across the board. Every major professional sports league has seen its average viewer grow older over the last 10 years.

While the “baseball is dying” narrative may contain some truth, these numbers indicate it’s overblown. If the product is entertaining, people will watch. The ratings success of this year’s World Series shows baseball is still alive and well.