CLEVELAND (AP) _ Clevelanders choosing which show is the greatest on Earth have picked the World Series.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus opened its annual run Wednesday night at Gund Arena, right in the middle of the World Series' three-night stand next door at Jacobs Field.

In the battle between attractions _ the Cleveland Indians and Florida Marlins against a world-famous circus _ baseball seemed to be winning out.

Jacquie Kranyak, spokeswoman for Ringling Bros., said advanced ticket sales for the circus were about the same as last year, including 8,000 for opening night.

But circus officials were not expecting the 2,000 walk-up sales they usually get, Kranyak said.

``We think that fewer people will come when the Series is on,'' she said. ``But we hope they'll all be ecstatic over a big victory and will be so happy that they'll all come to the show next week.''

The circus runs in Cleveland through Nov. 2.

To appease Indians fans who attend the circus instead of watching the World Series, lobby TVs at Gund Arena were to broadcast the games.

``We're huge Tribe supporters too,'' Gund Arena spokeswoman Phyllis Salem said. ``We're always interested in what's going on next door.''