Who is Watching the Astros?
By Ray Kuhn
The answer, quite frankly, is nobody.
Matt Dominguez, Chris Carter, and Cody Clark (Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports)
Yes, we know, there are a ton of reasons why. All are legitimate reasons and plausible explanations, but some deserve more credence than others.
Comcast isn’t available in 60% of homes. This is not a secret, and has also been an absolute nightmare for the Astros this season. It is a new era for the team in more ways than one, and it would been nice for fans to be able to watch the team play. But with Comcast, it goes beyond just the games.
This is the Astros network, and it could prove to be a very useful Public Relations tool. Both Comcast and the Astros missed out on a valuable opportunity for fans to get to know not only the major league team, but the minor league players as well.
What we also know, is that the Astros have essentially been eliminated from postseason contention since Memorial Day. It is hard to watch a losing team, and eventually even the most dedicated fans are going to start to see their attention wander. And this is assuming that they can even watch the game.
But as the calender turned from August to September, there was an even bigger variable. That is football.
Football is quickly becoming the most popular sport in the nation. That is even more true in Texas where high school and college football take on a greater importance than in other areas of the country. Each weekend is a three day feast of football, and that really renders the Astros irrelevant.
Regardless of all those facts, it is still just mind boggling to me how few people watched the Astros play on Saturday. Per David Barron’s blog entry for the Houston Chronicle, an average of 1,000 fans watched the game. Take that in. 1,000. That is all. For a major league team, that is beyond terrible. It is sad.
You can’t even blame Comcast for this, because based on that amount and the fact that only 40% of households have Comcast, that only projects to about 2,500 viewers.
Now I certainly can’t blame fans for not wanting to watch, because it has been painful at times. No one can say you must watch every game to be a fan. But you would expect that more than 1,000 people would watch the game.