TV Ratings: World Series Dips in Game 4, Still Pacing as Best in 7 Years

The Saturday game, which faced competition from NCAA football, brought the Cleveland Indians within one game of ending the series.
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The prospects of a seven-game World Series may be dimming, but Fox Sports has the comfort of airing baseball's most-watched games in seven years.

Following a whopping spike on Friday night, Saturday's Game 4 of the World Series brought another win for the Cleveland Indians and continued ratings dominance for the network. In overnight returns, the 7-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs averaged a 10.5 rating among metered-market households. That's below the previous three overnights but still up 13 percent from the comparable outing last year for a Game 4 — and another best since 2009.

The dip from the previous three nights came in the face of several college football matchups.
A welcome relief from the lows of the last five years, this World Series is averaging 18.7 million viewers through the first three games. That number, already up 27 percent from the first three games of the 2015 World Series, will be adjusted when final returns for Saturday's game come in. 

Prior to Saturday night's game, the series high came in on Friday night. It marked the most-watched Game 3 since the record-breaking 2004 World Series between the Boston Red Sox and the St. Louis Cardinals. Overall, this year's World Series is pacing more in line with the 2009 World Series, which averaged 19.4 million viewers over six games. That's the last time a World Series averaged anywhere near the 20-million viewer mark.

The Cubs have a chance to rally on Sunday night. They'll trot out pitcher Jon Lester for the first time since Game 1 in hopes of preventing the Indians from walking away with the title.

For Fox, Game 5 of the World Series faces its biggest ratings competition yet. Coverage has to contend with both NBC's Sunday Night Football and AMC's The Walking Dead.