The 2015 MLB season is here, and 70% of cable customers in the Los Angeles region are still without SportsNet LA, the cable home of the Dodgers. Unsurprising, Dodgers local ratings are in the toilet through the season’s first week.
On Monday, the season kicked off against the San Diego Padres, and the Dodgers drew a 0.79 rating and just over 58,000 viewers on SportsNet LA. To put that number in perspective, there were 53,000 people in attendance at the game at Dodger Stadium. Nearly as many people watched the game at the stadium as watched it on TV at home.
Things were a bit better on Tuesday for the Padres-Dodgers game, with SportsNet LA drawing a 1.04 rating and over 81,000 viewers. 40,000 people were in attendance at a rainy Dodger Stadium. The series finale on Wednesday dragged the bar to an embarrassing low – only 35,000 watched the game on SportsNet LA, good for a 0.58 rating. 52,000 were at the game, nearly 50% more than watched at home.
So in a nutshell, the Dodgers drew roughly 145,000 for the three game series…and only 174,000 watched the three games on television. That’s not good, especially when you’re talking about a massive market like Los Angeles.
Meanwhile, the Angels drew ratings of 1.35, 1.65, and 1.67 on Fox Sports West for their three game series with the Mariners, picking up 88,000, 132,000, and 130,000 viewers. Their low viewership total was better than the Dodgers’ high viewership total in week one of the season. I wouldn’t necessarily say the balance of power in southern California has shifted, but the Angels have a golden opportunity to attract some fans sitting on the fence while the dispute between Time Warner and a handful of LA’s major cable and satellite providers continues to roll on.