Chris Carlin, talking about the MLB playoff schedule asked Mike the following question:
"Do you think they purposely avoided Sunday because of the NFL?"
HERE'S WHAT MIKE SAID:
Mike: I don't they think care about playing against the NFL. They do well against the NFL. That's not a problem for them.
HERE'S THE REALITY:
Funny thing here. Richard Sandomir of the NY Times wrote an entire story today about how the NFL is killing MLB head-to-head ratings wise. Perhaps Mike wants to read this article:
Baseball Ratings Don’t Trump Football
By RICHARD SANDOMIR
Published: October 7, 2008
What attracts more local viewers — baseball playoff games or N.F.L. regular-season games?
Conventional thinking would suggest that a division series game starring one team in a market might get a higher rating than a Week 5 football game starring a second local team. But that supposition would be wrong. The N.F.L. is that potent.
On Sunday, just after 1 p.m., Game 4 of the Phillies-Brewers series in Milwaukee competed directly with the Packers’ kickoff against the Falcons at Green Bay.
In the Milwaukee market, baseball’s 12.7 rating was less than half of football’s 28.7.
Back east in Philadelphia, the same Phillies-Brewers game was shown against the Redskins-Eagles broadcast. And the 13.2 local rating for the division series game fell considerably below the 22.7 for football.
In two other markets where baseball and football were shown hours apart Sunday, the results were the same. When the Tampa Bay Rays played the White Sox in Game 3 of their series in late afternoon, the Chicago market posted a 9.6 rating. But fans rewarded the Bears with a 21.9 rating for their earlier game against the Lions.
For Game 3 of Angels-Red Sox series, which started after 7 p.m. but lasted 5 hours 19 minutes, Boston-area viewers generated a 24.7 rating — six rating points below what the market produced for the late-afternoon broadcast of the Patriots-49ers game.
The results suggest that there are distinct followings for each sport, and even when rooting interests in the two sports intersected, football won. The football games have an additional edge because they are on broadcast networks, which are more widely available than the division series games on a broadly distributed cable network like TBS.
Lee Berke, an industry consultant, said the once-a-week frequency of N.F.L. games was a major and continuing advantage.
“In a best-of-five playoff series, you can have five games,” he said. “So if you’re a fan of the Eagles and Phillies, you might say, the Eagles are only once a week, so I’ll watch the Eagles, then flip, or tune in later to the Phillies.”
In New York, fans motivated by Brett Favre’s move to the Jets are watching the team far more than last season, despite the Jets’ 2-2 record.
Through four games and a bye week, the Jets’ 12.3 local rating is up 39 percent from a five-game average last year. The Jets opened with 12.6 and 15.5 ratings against Miami and New England, then dipped to a 10.1 against San Diego and a 10.8 against Arizona. Last year, the first four games rated between a 5.9 and an 8.4, but spiked to a 13.3 for the Week 5 loss to the Giants.
“No doubt bringing Favre on board has had a pretty significant impact, but there’s a general energy about the team that we’re seeing in merchandising and sponsor activity,” said Matthew Higgins, the Jets’ executive vice president for business operations. He added that unique visitors to the Jets’ Web site were up 30 percent over 2007.
The Jets’ leap in local ratings is the biggest in the league, followed by a 24 percent hike for the Falcons and a 14 percent bump for the Dolphins. Coming off their Super Bowl victory, the Giants’ five-game average rating in the New York market is down 5 percent this year, but by this time last year, the Giants had played highly rated games with Dallas and Philadelphia; this year, they have played weak opponents like the Rams and the Bengals.
In other riveting news about what we watch, the league-championship-bound Rays had local ratings for their games on FSN Florida leap by 99 percent, the most in the majors.
The Mets’ ratings on SNY slipped less than 1 percent, and the Yankees’ ratings on YES fell 10 percent over last year. The Mariners’ rating, once a major-league-high 14.9 in 2001 on FSN Northwest, sank to 4.2 this year.
And Now, A Note From Brian Powell
6 years ago