World Series Game 1 Adolis Garcia Oct 27, 2023; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers right fielder Adolis Garcia (53) reacts after hitting a game-winning home run during the eleventh inning in game one of the 2023 World Series against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Game 1 of the 2023 World Series delivered on the field, but the Texas Rangers’ 6-5, 11-inning win over the Arizona Diamondbacks drew a record-low amount of eyeballs on Fox.

The game averaged 9.172 million viewers on Fox, a record-low for a World Series Game 1. The previous record-low came in 2020 for the bubble World Series between the Dodgers and Rays, which averaged 9.353 million viewers.

This isn’t a great start to the series for Fox. Even worse, viewership for Game 2 will be lower than Game 1. Throughout the history of the World Series, there’s almost always a natural drop from Game 1 to Game 2. This year, there was minimal competition for Game 1 (an NBA doubleheader on ESPN and WWE SmackDown on FS1, all of which drew under two million viewers). Game 2 went head-to-head with a modest slate of college football action, including Colorado-UCLA on ABC and Ohio State-Wisconsin on NBC.

Viewership for Game 2 will be available on Tuesday morning, with Game 3 viewership available on Tuesday afternoon.

In Dallas and Phoenix, Game 1 averaged an 18.8 rating and a 16.0 rating, respectively. For Game 2, those local ratings declined to 17.7 and 14.7, further indicating a national drop for the second game of the series. The previous record-low for a Game 2 also came in 2020, which averaged just 9.184 million viewers.

Game 3 takes place on Monday night, going head-to-head with¬†Monday Night Football‘s broadcast of Raiders-Lions on ABC and ESPN.

The good news is that the Diamondbacks won Game 2 (albeit in viewer-alienating, blowout fashion) to even the series at one game apiece. That at least retains drama going back to Phoenix for Games 3-5, raising the possibility of a longer series that might avoid an overall record low.

[Data via Sports Media Watch]

About Joe Lucia

I hate your favorite team. I also sort of hate most of my favorite teams.