The Athletics are a very good team, but their Wednesday encounter against the Astros -- for reasons sufficient unto the sinister bean-counters who afflict us -- was not televised back home in Oakland. Meantime, the Astros -- a very bad team -- are available for viewing in a mere minority of Houston-area households because of an ongoing carriage dispute.
What happened with these two considerations merged for that Wednesday tilt? Take it away, Awful Announcing ...
The Athletics-Astros game drew a 0.0 rating on CSN Houston, the third time this has happened since the network's launch nearly two years ago. While this in and of itself isn't strange, the other side of the equation is – the game wasn't available at all in Oakland on CSN California, meaning that the two local ratings for the game were 0.0 and N/A. This is absurd, considering the size of both markets.
The deep, almost risible flaws in Nielsen's methodology are noted, but even with the wide error bars these numbers remain pretty dismal.
Let's give a special nod of ridicule to MLB.tv's local blackout policy, in the absence of which fans in Oakland and Houston might have been able to, you know, watch their teams play. Things as they were, though, literally almost no one saw the game.
Spoiler alert: The Astros won, 8-1.