July 15, 2013

SKEDBALL: Weekend Sports TV Ratings

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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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The ratings below are household ratings from the 56 television markets with local Nielsen meters for Saturday July 13 and Sunday July 14, 2013. (The 56 markets out of 210 total cover about 70% of the US television population.)


NASCAR ruled the weekend yet again with both races up versus last year.  The main race on Sunday hit a 3.0 rating nationally, rising 15% from last year.

NASCAR — New England 300

TNT Sun 1:00 pm 3.0 rating (+15% from 2.6 rating last year)

NASCAR — New England 200

ABC Sat 3:30 pm 1.5 rating (+25% from 1.2 rating last year)



Heading into the All-Star break, MLB managed a slight increase versus last year.  Most of that increase can be attributed to a primetime time period this year versus last year’s late afternoon slot.

MLB — Regular Season Week #15

FOX Sat 7:15 pm STL-CHC COL-LAD TEX-DET NYM-PIT WAS-MIA 2.4 rating (+9% from 2.2 rating last year, a 3-game regional at 4:00 pm)

  • As always, baseball showed how hyper-local its fan base is.  Ratings in markets with teams involved in the FOX Saturday combo ranged from a a high of a 10.7 to a low of a 2.3 rating.  But markets without a team involved (the vast majority of TV markets) generate less than a 1 rating
  • In the top 10 markets, three markets had teams involved in FOX’s five selected games and delivered solid to excellent ratings: Dallas (6.0 rating), Chicago (4.0), Washington DC (4.0)
  • Two of the top 10 markets had teams involved but had fairly mediocre ratings: Los Angeles (2.8), New York (2.3)
  • The other five large markets had no reason to watch: Philadelphia (0.7), San Francisco (0.7), Boston (0.7), Atlanta (1.0), Houston (0.6)
  • In the markets outside of the top 10, three markets had superior ratings: Detroit (market # 11) 10.7 rating / 21 share, Pittsburgh (market #23) 10.2 / 21 and St Louis (market #21) 10.0 / 20.  Three great baseball cities with teams in serious playoff contention
  • The other markets with teams involved had okay ratings: Miami (market #16) 3.2 rating and Denver (market #17) 2.4 rating


Golf is just hurting.  A weak 1.3 rating for the PGA event on CBS over the weekend, down 19% from last year.  Directly against it on NBC, the US Senior Open was up 19% but still below a 1 rating for the weekend.

PGA– John Deere Classic

CBS Sat 3:00-6:00 pm Third Round 1.0 rating (-9% from 1.1 rating last year)

CBS Sun 3:00-7:15 pm Final Round 1.6 rating (-24% from 2.1 rating last year from 3:00-6:00 pm)

COMBINED WEEKEND COVERAGE 1.3 rating (-19% from 1.6 rating last year)


U.S. Senior Open


NBC Sat 3:00-6:00 pm Third Round 0.65 rating (+7% from 0.61 rating last year)


NBC Sun 2:45-6:00 pm Final Round 0.99 rating (+29% from 0.77 rating last year from 3:00-6:00 pm)


COMBINED WEEKEND COVERAGE 0.82 rating (+19% from 0.69 rating last year)








About the Author

Mitch Metcalf
MITCH METCALF has been tracking every US film release of over 500 screens (over 2300 movies and counting) since the storied weekend of May 20, 1994, when Maverick and Beverly Hills Cop 3 inspired countless aficionados to devote their lives to the art of cinema. Prior to that, he studied Politics and Economics at Princeton in order to prepare for his dream of working in television. He has been Head of West Coast Research at ABC, then moved to NBC in 2000 and became Head of Scheduling for 11 years.