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'Sports Hub' rules spring ratings book

Posted by Chad Finn, Globe Staff  July 13, 2011 04:40 PM

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Turns out the spring wasn't just a memorable season for the Stanley Cup-champion Bruins, but for the station that airs their games as well.

In the spring Arbitron ratings period, 98.5 The Sports Hub, the Bruins' flagship station since launching in August 2009 as a challenger to WEEI's throne as Boston's sports radio king, finished first in the market among the all-important men 25-54 demographic, earning an 8.8 share. The classic rock station WZLX was second, at 7.6. WEEI-AM was tied for sixth (5.1). With the share in the Boston market for its Providence-based FM station included, WEEI moves up to fourth (5.6).

It was a similar story during the four daily time slots. The Sports Hub, receiving a boost from the Bruins' run to the Cup, was first in morning drive, afternoon drive, and evenings, with the midday program finishing second in its window. Here's the breakdown of all the weekday programming in the men 25-54 demo:

Morning drive (6 a.m.-10 a.m.): The Sports Hub's "Toucher and Rich" program won the day part with an 11.6 share, including a 14.3 in the June monthly. WEEI's "Dennis and Callahan" show earned a 6.0, tying them for third. With the Boston share from its Providence-based FM station included, D&C has a 6.4, alone in third place.

Midday (10 a.m.-2 p.m.) The Sports Hub's "Gresh and Zo" finished second (9.7 share) to WZLX's Carter Alan show (10.5) in the time slot. WEEI's "Mut and Merloni" show was 10th (3.8), eighth with FM included (4.3).

Afternoon drive (2 p.m.-6 p.m.): The Sports Hub's "Felger and Massarotti" won the time slot was a 9.4 (11.5 in June). WEEI's "The Big Show," featuring Glenn Ordway and Michael Holley, tied for fifth with a 5.5. (fourth, 6.0, with FM.) The Sports Hub also won the period from 6 p.m.-7 p.m. when it airs "The Baseball Reporters," often against the Red Sox pregame show on WEEI. The Sports Hub had a 7.9 share, while WEEI was 10th with a 4.7.

Evenings (7 p.m.-midnight): The Sports Hub, which has the "DA Show" and Bruins game broadcasts in this period, earned a 10.2 share, including a 14.6 in June. WEEI, which carries "Planet Mikey" and Red Sox games at night, finished in a three-way tied for third (6.9). With FM, it's an 8.2, good for third place alone.

The spring book covers the period from March 31 to June 22. It is the first time The Sports Hub as finished atop a quarterly ratings period.

In the winter ratings book, WEEI was fourth, while the Sports Hub tied for fifth.

I'll have more on the sports radio ratings in Friday's media column.

About Touching All The Bases

Irreverence and insight from Chad Finn, a Globe/Boston.com sports writer and media columnist. A winner of several national and regional writing awards, he is the founder and sole contributor to the TATB blog, which launched in December 2004. Yes, he realizes how lucky he is.

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