We all know that the Red Sox bring ratings, and I honestly thought that FOX would be crying after their loss Sunday night, but the network is surprisingly upbeat given the uphill ratings climb in front of them. According to President of Fox Sports, Ed Goren, the secret to their success lies not in the actual teams playing, but rather the length of said series. From Globe and Mail via SBD….

“It’s not just about the matchup,” Goren said. “As important as anything else is the number of games, the volume of games. If we get six or seven games in this matchup, we will out-rate last year’s Red Sox World Series.”

The longer it goes, the larger the numbers get. If a network is fortunate enough to televise a seven-game series, the ratings for the latter games will pull up the overall average.

“These things build,” Goren said. “It’s water-cooler talk. It becomes must-see TV.”

Still, if this Series is over in four games and the average rating dips to historic lows, Fox will be required to reimburse advertisers with additional ad spots on other shows.

Fox’s advertising revenue won’t be affected, because the commercial time was bought before the World Series teams were decided. A ratings decline this year, however, would affect 2009 prices.

The network is reportedly charging $475,000 (U.S.) for a 30-second spot.

While the talk of a longer series equaling better ratings isn’t necessarily groundbreaking, it’s still interesting to hear Fox flat out admit that’s what they’re hoping for. While I obviously want to see the most competitive World Series possible, there’s a small part of me that wants to see Fox tank in the ratings. You know….just to see how bad it is.

Networks made their Red Sox-Yankees bed along time ago, and now they have to lie in it.

Mis-Matched? (Sports Business Daily – $)
Fox bullish despite weak matchup (Globe and Mail)

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