World Series game delay wreaks havoc, boosts ratings for primetime shows


St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Edwin Jackson and manager Tony La Russa during Game 4 of the World Series. (Matt Slocum/AP)

NBC, for instance, aired repeats of “Up All Night,” Whitney” and “Harry’s Law” to get out of baseball’s way. The best you can say about NBC’s re-run ratings is that the network finished the night ahead of Fox’s “Glee” repeats.

The networks that have evolved a nuts-to-you programming response to the World Series fared better Wednesday night. ABC, for instance, enjoyed its second most watched Wednesday of the season with “The Middle” posting some series-best numbers, ditto “Suburgatory,” “Revenge” clocked its second highest numbers ever, and even “Modern Family’s” rerun of last year’s Halloween episode — a classic — garnered that comedy’s best ever repeat performance.

Meanwhile CBS chose not to take a break in its “Survivor: South Pacific” competition despite expected World Series competition and wound up copping its biggest audience yet of this edition – nearly 12 million viewers.

The next morning NBC mulled the possibility of a World Series game on Friday – opposite its scheduled season debut of ‘Chuck” and premiere its new fairytale crime drama series, “Grimm.” And, there was a certain amount of hyperventilating among “Fringe” fans that the Fox show might be scrubbed from Friday’s lineup to make room for the Series.

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