SBD/October 2, 2013/Media

Yankees Viewership On YES Network Drops More Than 30% Compared To '12

Rivera's final game attracted 258,000 viewers, a little above the season average
YES Network saw a 31.2% drop  in viewership for Yankees games this season, as the loss of a "staggering 111,000 viewers" left an "average of 244,000 devoted souls to watch" each broadcast, according to Richard Sandomir of the N.Y. TIMES. Even the season-long farewell to P Mariano Rivera "could not stanch the viewer disaffection." Rivera's final game last Thursday "attracted 258,000 viewers, a little above the season’s average." However, from 9:45-10:15pm ET following Rivera's entry, viewership "soared to a peak for the game of 585,000." This is "unhappy, unknown territory" for the net, which began in '02. Yankees viewership since '07 "shows a troubling trend that did not start with this year’s disappointing finish." There were 454,000 viewers six years ago, "but 210,000 -- nearly half -- have since departed." Part of that drop "might be attributable to fans being bored with winning and the empire slowly fraying." Some fans "might have switched to watching on laptops and mobile devices; that use is not measured by Nielsen," and there also could be a "quirk in the way Nielsen measures television viewing." However, it simply could be that fans "might be watching less of each game, which reduces viewership." Meanwhile, Mets’ viewership on SportsNet N.Y. also "took a big dip" this season. But there was "good reason: they finished with their fifth consecutive losing record." Viewership "fell 29 percent from last season, to 139,000." Since '07, a winning season for the Mets that "finished in a collapse, viewership has fallen" by 55.7% (N.Y. TIMES, 10/2).

BRAVURA PERFORMANCE: Braves ratings on FS South and SportSouth were up 20% and 24% respectively in '13. FS South for the year finished with a 4.08 local rating in the Atlanta market while SportSouth finished with a 4.09 local rating, marking both nets' best ratings since '10. The Braves had their highest-rated game on an RSN since '00 with an 8.9 on Opening Day on FS South. Braves games on both nets throughout '13 earned at least a 5.0 local rating 31 times, compared to twice in '12 and four times in '11 (Fox Sports).
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Media, YES Network, New York Yankees

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