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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., July 15-17) -- Rangers fade with three straight daytime games

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A battle of first-place teams in beautiful, historic Wrigley Field on paper seemed like a ratings bonanza for the Texas Rangers and Fox Sports Southwest.

But all three games were played in the early afternoon, and the Rangers dropped the first two to the Chicago Cubs while scoring just five runs in the entire series. So hello, ratings loss column.

Friday’s 6-0 Cubs win, which started at 1:05 p.m., had just 70,824 D-FW viewers. Saturday’s early afternoon game, a 3-1 Rangers loss with Yu Darvish returning to the mound, perked up to 134,566 viewers. Sunday afternoon’s 4-1 Rangers’ win, fueled by a superb performance from Cole Hamels, inched up to 141,648 total viewers.

One or more night games at Wrigley might have doubled those totals. Particularly on Friday, when the Rangers played in relative obscurity during workday hours. The ratings, which remain strong for night games at home, likely will stay flat for the Monday-Wednesday late night games at Anaheim. All of them start at 9:05 p.m. Home games get underway two hours earlier.

Elsewhere on Sunday’s sports front, NBC’s final round of The Open, with Henrik Stenson out-dueling Phil Mickelson in their part-busting showdown, averaged 127,483 viewers despite a 6 a.m. start and 12:30 p.m. finish. The audience peaked at 184,142 viewers between noon and 12:15 p.m.

In prime-time, ABC won in total viewers from 7 to 9 p.m. with Celebrity Family Feud (162,895) and The $100,000 Pyramid (134,566) before Fox4’s local 9 p.m. newscast beat ABC’s Match Game by a score of 169,978 viewers to 141,648.

Among advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-olds, the 7 to 10 p.m. winners were CBS’ Big Brother, Pyramid and Fox4’s news.

Here are Friday’s local news derby numbers.

NBC5 won at 10 p.m. in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming).

Fox4 had twin wins at 6 a.m. while NBC5 swept the 5 p.m. competitions. CBS11 drew the most total viewers at 6 p.m. but was nipped by NBC5 for the top spot with 25-to-54-year-olds.

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