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Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

First hour of April 11 Mets game could be blacked out

The Mets and their fans have had some unfortunate experiences with the Florida Marlins in recent seasons. Now they are facing another early in the 2009 campaign.

Here's the problem: The Marlins have scheduled their meeting with the Mets next Saturday for 6:10 p.m. to accommodate a post-game concert.

But Fox has exclusive national rights to MLB from 4 to 7 p.m. on Saturdays, except for games scheduled early in the afternoon that happen to run past 4.

That means that as it now stands, the first 50 minutes or so of the game cannot be televised by SNY, or anyone else but Fox. (It is not scheduled to be shown in south Florida at all.)

Major League Baseball issued this statement when asked whether anything can be done about it:

"The game is scheduled for 6 p.m. The matter has been brought to our attention and the entire issue is under consideration."

It appears if there is to be a change, it will have to be made by the Marlins, as Fox has no incentive to give up the New York market from 6 to 7 p.m. by waiving its exclusivity.

Is there anything MLB can do to avoid such scheduling problems before they occur in the future? It's not as if it's a secret the Marlins' schedule states the game is at 6:10.

Said MLB: "This is a scenario that we will continue to explore."

Tags: sny , mets

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