I don’t think the whole “0.0” phenomenon with the Houston Astros is really all that surprising or tragic considering the current state of both the team and CSN Houston, but it’s still noteworthy. And on Monday afternoon, the Astros picked up another 0.0 rating for their contest with the Angels.
The first time the Astros “earned” a perfect 0.0 rating, they were going up against a Texans home game that aired on the local CBS station. On Monday, the competition came from a rescheduled NASCAR race from Fort Worth that aired on Fox, which earned a 1.7 rating locally.
But in reality, the sample from which the rating is derived isn’t very large. According to David Barron of the Houston Chronicle, only 579 Neilsen boxes were in use in Houston on Monday, and the reason for the nonexistent rating was because none of them were tuned into the game at all. Yet, the pregame show ended up drawing a 0.2 rating – so at least the festivities before the on-field activity were viewed by some people locally. That’s some kind of weird silver lining, right?
The Astros are stuck in a perfect storm of disaster right now. Their rights deal is with an RSN that still can’t get any carriage deals done, and they’re not even getting rights fees anymore because of CSN Houston’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings. The club itself is improved, but still projects as one of the worst in baseball this season following three straight 105 loss seasons.
I’m curious as to what the local rating for Wednesday night’s Astros-Blue Jays game on ESPN ended up being. Maybe if local people tune in on a national level, CSN Houston could gain some momentum towards widespread carriage. Or, maybe no one will have watched, and the Astros will continue to struggle to draw eyeballs to their product.