In a very rare scheduling occurrence, the Eagles and Phillies both played on the same day at the same time yesterday. This certainly will happen form time to time in September when the NFL has just started and baseball's regular season was winding down and the Phillies will typicall grab just a fraction of the local TV ratings. But this was a playoff game.
The Phillies were looking for a sweep of the Reds to book their place in the NLCS. The Eagles were on the road in San Francisco on national TV looking to keep pace atop the NFC East. Which team would Philly be watching? As it turns out, it was the Phillies.
The Phillies scored a 27.7 rating while the Eagles grabbed a 24.1 share. Nationally, it was no contest. Eagles vs 49ers rating was 200% better than Phillies vs Reds.
Of course you have to put things in context. Most fans were probably watching both games whether they were flipping back and forth, using two screens, or picture-in-picture... but one had to be the primary game right? We ran two polls yesterday asking fans which would be the primary game they'd watch. Over on the Eagles blog Bleeding Green Nation, the Eagles barely edged the Phillies with 54% of the vote. Here on SB Nation Philly it wasn't nearly as close with the Phillies grabbing 80% of the vote.
It was a playoff game and also the Phillies highest ever rated NLDS game... So they really had to pull out the big guns to beat the Eagles, but they did it nonetheless. While I'm not sure that we can say Philly has moved from being primarily a football town to a baseball town, it's amazing that we can even have the discussion. Even 5 or 6 years ago, it would have been a joke.
Of course, it doesn't have to be a zero sum game... With both teams selling out every game and getting huge ratings on local TV, it very well may be the case that we're a baseball and a football town.