Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Sports

Shooting from the lip

Dismal MLB All-Star numbers

Fox earned a 6.8 rating for Tuesday's MLB All-Star Game — a record low for the game — and a 12 share. That means 6.8 percent of households with TVs in the top 30 media markets were tuned in; the share is the percentage watching a show among homes with TVs in use at the time.

The 8-0 National League victory was seen by an average audience of 10.9 million. Last year's 5-1 NL victory drew a 6.9/12 and was seen by an average of 11 million.

It obviously hurt that the NL took a 5-0 lead Tuesday in the top of the first. The rating at the start was 6.5/12, up 7 percent from last season and the best for the All-Star Game since 2009, when President Barack Obama appeared before the game, but the numbers stayed down as the AL failed to mount a challenge.

Signings of the day

After recently losing a couple of notable personalities in Erin Andrews and Michelle Beadle, ESPN re-signed several of its familiar on-air faces. And ESPN made the announcements public, perhaps because so much was made publicly about losing Andrews and Beadle.

The first big re-signing was Stuart Scott. The 19-year ESPN veteran, known for his trademark "booyah,'' will continue to anchor SportsCenter as well as serve as host for many of ESPN's Monday Night Football and NBA pregame and postgame shows.

Then, on Wednesday, the network signed NFL insiders Adam Schefter and John Clayton, as well as NFL draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. and reporter Ed Werder to multi-year contract extensions.

Three things that popped into my head

1. Sorry, but Chipper Jones pregame All-Star pep talk didn't remind anyone of Knute Rockne.

2. Speaking of Chipper Jones, didn't his seeing-eye single past Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler look a little, uh, suspicious?

3. Know who has had an outstanding July? Lightning GM Steve Yzerman.

tom jones' two cents

Biggest dropped ball

Nationals' 19-year-old sensation Bryce Harper lost a fly ball in the high sky during Tuesday's All-Star Game, but it wasn't the biggest dropped ball of the night. That goes to Fox for missing the Rays' Fernando Rodney shooting his imaginary arrow into the air after setting aside the three batters he faced in the ninth inning.

Rodney's routine of shooting an imaginary arrow after saving a Rays game is one of the more imaginative and entertaining celebrations in baseball, certainly better than pointing to the sky or some elaborately goofy high-five handshake. Rodney even said before the game that he planned on shooting his invisible arrow if he pitched well.

But Fox missed all the fun and didn't have cameras on Rodney as he did his thing. Too bad, it might have spruced up what, at the time, was an 8-0 snoozer. Someone at Fox simply wasn't paying attention.

The ratings game

ESPN averaged 3.925 million viewers for Sunday's Wimbledon men's final between Roger Federer and Andy Murray, making it the most-viewed tennis match ever on ESPN. Last year's Wimbledon final between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal on NBC drew 2.652 million viewers.

This year was the first time the entire tournament at Wimbledon aired exclusively on ESPN. The network averaged 981,000 viewers, about the same compared to last year's numbers for NBC and ESPN2.

 
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