World Series scores a TV ratings low

The three-inning conclusion of the suspended Game 5 of the World Series attracted only 19.8 million viewers, the least viewed series by a significant amount.

The series was hurt by a 90-minute rain delay before Game 3 and the two-day suspension of Game 5. The average viewership of 13.6 million was a 14 percent drop from the previous low of 15.8 million for the Cardinals’ five-game victory over the Tigers in 2006, the “New York Times” reported.

The newspaper said the Philadelphia market produced a 51.8 rating (and ended with a 36.3 average), while in the Tampa-St. Petersburg, FL, market, the rating was a 32.4 (and a 28.4 for the series).

The series viewership fell below that of the NBA finals last June, when the Celtics’ six-game victory over the Lakers averaged 14.9 million. The last time the NBA finals beat the World Series was in 1998, when Michael Jordan led the Bulls to the last of his six titles with them.