I've given this considerable thought ...
I can see where you're coming from with Survivor etc. (in relation to setting the machines to only 3 balls)
I watch a lot of sports, and one of the things people love is a comeback. A comeback would be nigh on impossible with having to start a new game when you're playing a great player.
Scenario: lock three balls on Aerosmith.
Imagine if player one is a great player and player two is average ... let's say Bowden vs me lol. Bowden goes through the motions and locks two balls on his first two balls. Meanwhile I'm flailing around and have one ball locked in three balls. I'm done, I have to start again, contest over, that'll be some boring viewing.
Scenario 2: Imagine if (like Pinmasters) the machines are set to 8 balls (or whatever) and Bowden has 2 balls locked, he's starting ball 3, I'm starting ball 4 with one ball locked and have a blinder, bang bang bang into the lock lane and multiball starts. Come back from the dead! Boom! Isn't that better viewing?
I'm comparing Pinball TV with say Darts ... that's a sport which is massive around the world, has big viewership and big $$$ prize pools, and that's all come from nothing. The best player in the world can get 2x 180s in a row, then miss the board completely (lol) and Bob Smith the nobody from the pub down the road comes back with some sweet shots and takes him out. Great viewing!
My 1c worth anyway.