Aaron Outrates Bonds on TV ratings

Associated
Press

Hank Aaron
is still the home-run king when it comes to television ratings.

ESPN2’s
broadcast of Barry Bonds’ record 756th homer received a 1.1 cable rating on
ESPN2 Tuesday night, which translates to 995,000 households.

When Aaron
hit his 715th home run on April 8, 1974, to break Babe Ruth’s record, NBC’s
broadcast received a 22.3 rating on NBC, the equivalent of 14.9 million homes.

Back in
Aaron’s day, there were only a fraction of the TV channels that viewers can
choose from today. Also, baseball had far less competition for the attention of
fans.

Aaron’s
historic home run in

Atlanta was hit at 9:07
p.m. EDT, while Bonds’ drive in

San
Francisco came at 11:51 p.m. EDT. During the 11:45
p.m. to midnight time period, ESPN2’s telecast averaged a 1.7 cable rating (1.6
million homes), and for the following 15 minutes the rating jumped to 1.9 (1.8
million homes).

NBC did
not have 15-minute breakdowns available for the 1974 game.

Bonds’
game did better in

San Francisco,
where is received a 7.2 rating and 15 share on FSN Bay Area (172,000 homes).
During the 15-minute time period when Bonds homered, the telecast got an 11.1
rating (265,000 homes).

Tuesday’s
game was the 10th added Giants telecast by ESPN/ESPN2 during Bonds’ home run
chase.

The rating
is the percentage of television households watching a broadcast, and the share
is the percentage watching among those homes with televisions on at the time.