Where is the World Series most popular on television? Certainly not in Baltimore.
The Detroit Tigers-San Francisco Giants World Series is big news in—Detroit and San Francisco, and not many other places.
The first two games of the Series had record low ratings though the second game was up slightly from the first. If the Tigers fail to make the Series a competitive one, it’s likely to be the lowest-rated in history.
According to FOX Sports, four of the 10 markets with the most viewers for the games don’t even have major league baseball franchises: Sacramento, which has a huge Giants following, Las Vegas, Fort Myers, Fla. and Portland, Oregon.
FOX would have been happiest with a Yankees-Dodgers World Series, and they’ve been handicapped by getting two teams with fanatical regional followings but relatively low national ones.
If Detroit manages to win at least two games and extends the Series to six or seven games, ratings will be much higher.
While the ratings are much lower for the World Series than for an NFL game, that didn’t stop FOX, TBS, ESPN and the MLB Network from signing long-term extensions on their deals.
Had the Orioles or Nationals made it to the World Series, the ratings wouldn’t have been any higher. Both teams have devoted local, but limited national, followings.
Manny Machado could very well be playing in his final game in an Orioles uniform Tuesday night when he takes the field for the 89th Midsummer Classic at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C.
According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Dodgers are now in the driver's seat as a favorite to land the All-Star shortstop.
Machado, 26, has gone back and forth on what he does and does not know as front office deals develop and speculation continues to grow. One thing he has made clear is that the rumors have not detracted from his enjoyment of being an All-Star.
Machado is signed through the end of the season, but the Orioles intend to deal him before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.
For the latest news and conversation surrounding Machado's status and the Orioles, follow along on Twitter.
2018 MLB All-Star Guide
Bryce Harper reflects on his baseball career
Best and worst ASG uniforms
When Manny Machado returns from the 2018 MLB All-Star Break, he will not be donning a Baltimore Orioles uniform.
The All-Star shortstop is expected to be traded from Baltimore to the Los Angeles Dodgers, barring any last-minute changes, according to multiple media reports.
That being said, the Machado trade talks remain fluid and both the Phillies and Brewers are still trying to work a trade for the 26-year-old third baseman, according to Jon Heyman. The Diamondbacks are also reportedly trying to lure the four-time All-Star to the desert, while the Yankees decided to pull out of the Machado sweepstakes just prior to the All-Star festivities in Washington, D.C.
While the details of the trade have yet to be revealed, the Dodgers will reportedly include top outfield prospect Yusniel Diaz in the Machado trade, according to Heyman.
According to Jim Bowden, when regular-season play returns, Machado will be in the National League, although which team he plays for is still up in the air.
With the Orioles sitting a historically awful 39.5 games out of first place at the All-Star Break, trading Machado is the first major step toward a complete overhaul. The Orioles drafted Machado out of Brito High School in Miami, Fla., with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2010 MLB Draft. Since then, Machado has drawn comparisons to iconic third basemen Brooks Robinson and Alex Rodriguez, despite being moved to shortstop full-time this past season, and is widely considered one of the three best position players in professional baseball.
Machado is currently batting .315 with 24 home runs and 65 RBIs.
MORE MLB NEWS: