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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., July 11-13)

Sunday's rare Fox4 telecast of a Texas Rangers game wound up as much more than a bunt in the D-FW Nielsens.

The marathon 12-11 win over the White Sox dominated all daytime programming before peaking at 141,265 homes from 6 to 6:15 p.m., when Rangers' reliever C.J. Wilson finally got the save after his usual dance with death.

The game's high point fell just a bit short of the first 15 minutes of CBS' 60 Minutes (160,750 homes), but clubbed the news magazine and everything else among advertiser-coveted 18-to-49-year-olds. That's an eye-opener for those who think that baseball mostly is for old-timers.

Later in prime-time, the premiere of CBS' Big Brother 10 managed just 75,504 homes from 7 to 8 p.m. in running third. It also took the bronze with 18-to-49-year-olds.

NBC's two-hour Miss Universe Pageant, in which top 10 finalist Miss USA (Crystle Stewart of Missouri City, TX) fell down during the evening gown competition, fell pretty flat itself with 94,988 homes from 8 to 10 p.m. It was pounded in the 9 p.m. hour by Fox4's local newscast, which drew 170,492 homes while also easily winning the time period with 18-to-49-year-olds.

In the battle of the 10:30 p.m. local sports specials, WFAA8's Dale Hansen was tops (73,068 homes), with NBC5's Newy Scruggs and CBS11's Babe Laufenberg tying for second (48,712 homes). But Fox4's Mike Doocy again drew a bigger audience by starting a half-hour earlier. His 10 p.m. sports special had a league-leading 87,682 homes. (Note to readers: I don't know how many if any of the stations' sports first-stringers actually did their shows, which nonetheless bear their names anyway.)

On Friday, the 9 p.m. premiere of CBS' made-in-Canada Flashpoint cop drama ran a robust first in total homes with 148,572. That made it D-FW's most-watched prime-time program, with Flashpoint also winning big in the 18-to-49 demo.

In the local news derby, Flashpoint's success helped CBS11 to win at 10 p.m. in total homes (143,700). But WFAA8 narrowly took the gold among 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming.

Wins again were split at 6 a.m., with Fox4 taking first in total homes and NBC5 tops among 25-to-54-year-olds.

WFAA8 ran the table at 5 and 6 p.m., notching its 15th straight weekday sweep in the later hour.

Anchor Tracy Rowlett's last newscast for CBS11 finished fourth at 5 p.m. in both ratings measurements. A total of 65,761 homes and 11,778 viewers in the 25-to-54 demographic watched co-anchor Karen Borta bid Rowlett a teary-eyed and heartfelt goodbye. There also were taped farewells from the likes of former WFAA8 weatherman Troy Dungan and current WFAA8 investigative reporter Byron Harris.

In contrast at 5 p.m., Rowlett's frontrunning old station, WFAA8, attracted 97,424 homes and 47,112 viewers in the 25-to-54 range.