Rays-Red Sox Game 7 showdown sets viewers record for MLB on cable

NEW YORK -- Game 7 of the AL Championship Series drew the most viewers ever for a baseball game on cable television.

Nearly 13.4 million people watched the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Boston Red Sox 3-1 on Sunday night on TBS, the network said Monday. That broke the mark set by the 1998 Chicago Cubs-St. Louis Cardinals game on ESPN in which Mark McGwire hit his 61st home run to tie the single-season record.

Game 7 earned a 7.9 rating, with the series averaging a 4.6. That's up 64 percent from last year's NLCS on TBS, the Colorado Rockies' sweep of the Arizona Diamondbacks in a series that lacked the large market and national appeal that the Red Sox bring.