Baseball fans across the country might have been a little sleepy Friday morning after watching the Boston Red Sox' late-night comeback victory against the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 5 of the MLB American League championship Series.
The game, in which the Red Sox trailed the Rays by seven runs as late as the seventh inning, was a rollercoaster ride for both teams' fans -- as reflected in the preliminary metered market TV ratings, released by Nielsen on Friday.
At the close of the game's first hour, one-quarter of all Boston households were watching, but that audience eroded steadily in the game's second hour, as the Rays widened their lead over the Red Sox.
With the Red Sox down 0-7 in the top of the seventh inning, just 15.1% of local Boston households -- a game low -- remained. But just 30 minutes later, when Boston scored four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning, that percentage jumped to 22.1%, as Boston households returned to their TVs to watch the game heat up.
Household viewing in the Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg, Florida market hovered between 20% and 25% for much of the game.
Overall viewing among Nielsen's top 56 metered markets also remained steady -- at 5% to 6% of all households -- throughout the game.