Those watching Saturday’s Texas Rangers at Detroit Tigers game on Fox Sports 1 may have noticed that the main camera high above home plate had some issues early in the game.

Tony Paul of the Detroit News wrote “the cameraman couldn’t find the baseball. At least once, on a Rajai Davis flyball in the bottom of the fifth inning, the camera was focusing on the seats near the left-field foul line. Too bad Rangers left fielder Shin-Soo Choo caught it well shy of the fence, and nearly out of the frame in left-center.”

When national crews come into a city, normally they’ll hire the local camera operators and pay them a higher rate. According to the News, Fox Sports 1 was unable to hire the regular Fox Sports Detroit cameraman for the high home plate position because it would not pay him the higher rate and he turned down the assignment “on principle.”

Paul added: “And here’s the kicker: The money difference, while not exactly known, isn’t believed to be an overly significant amount.”

Paul reported that Fox had to bring in two inexperienced operators for the game.

A Fox Sports spokesman would not acknowledge the pay dispute but did confirm that there were some issues following the ball in the first few innings, but they improved as the game progressed.

Word tends to travel among technical circles about pay disputes. Fox Sports 1 doesn’t want the reputation of nickel-and-diming especially as it’s doing 40 games this season. The last thing it wants is to be given a “cheap” tag by crews across the country.

[Detroit News]

About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.

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