While the official viewership figure for Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game was a record low, the addition of viewers who watched a live stream or Spanish-language telecast of the game boosted the game over the previous low, according to live-plus-same-day figures released by Nielsen Wednesday.
Fox’s telecast of the American League’s 8-6 10-inning victory over the National League Tuesday in Washington averaged 8.688 million viewers. The previous record low for prime-time coverage of an MLB All-Star Game was 8.71 million for the 2016 game, which was played in San Diego.
The total viewership, which includes Fox’s streaming services and Fox Deportes was 8.849 million.
The All-Star Game had set record lows in 10 of the 18 years from 1995 through 2012. Fox Broadcasting has carried the game each year since 2001.
The 2017 All-Star Game averaged 9.28 million viewers, the game’s third-smallest official prime-time audience.
“America’s Got Talent,” which ran on NBC opposite the first one hour, 44 minutes of Fox’s All-Star Game coverage in most of the nation, was Tuesday’s most-watched prime-time program, averaging 11.33 million viewers.
The record audience for the All-Star Game came in 1976, when an average of 36.33 million viewers watched ABC’s coverage in an era where there were three major broadcast networks and few other television alternatives.
Viewership for most events has fallen over the past 25 years because of increased competition from cable television, Fox and streaming programming and such leisure time activities as surfing the Internet, playing video games and watching recorded programming.
The All-Star Game has been played in prime time each year since 1967, except for 1969, when rain forced a one-day delay of the game in Washington and a switch to an afternoon start.