If we had to assign a grade to Major League Baseball for the way they scheduled this year’s World Series, they would get a solid “D.” As in, derp.
Already struggling to pull in viewers at anything close to the same rate as the other major American sports, the MLB decided that Game 1 should be on Wednesday this year. The way that travel/rest days break down, that means that out of a seven game series, four World Series games will be competing directly with NFL games. Plus, Game 7 would be on Halloween night, when everyone is
watching baseball going outside and getting drunk on candy sugar.
This means, relatively speaking, that no one is going to be watching these games.
Via Business Insider, here’s a chart showing this year’s World Series schedule, compared to what a schedule would have looked like if they had started the series one day earlier (which still would have afforded two days off for the Red Sox):
In the last few weeks alone we’ve seen what happens when (postseason) MLB games go up against (regular season) NFL games: the MLB gets destroyed, like when last week’s Sunday Night Football game between the Washington Footballers and Cowboys pulled in 19.6 million viewers and Game 2 of the ALCS had preliminary numbers of 8.26 million. And now the MLB is going to make America choose between baseball and football a possible four nights out of seven (and two nights out of four if the series is a sweep)?
Also, please note that last year’s World Series had historically low numbers, including the least viewed Games 1 and 2 of all time. Already facing an uphill battle of getting people to care — though admittedly the Boston Red Sox and St. Louis Cardinals should draw more viewers than the San Francisco Giants and Detroit Tigers — the league put itself at a major disadvantage this year.
Photo via Getty