Mike Francesa ma

On any given night, there are dozens of sporting events to keep track of, and it’s nearly impossible to watch all of them. As a radio host, when you have the opportunity to talk about a game you watched, that fact has a tendency to leak out in your analysis. It’s human nature to tacitly prove to your audience you aren’t just going off the box score and selected highlights. You actually watched the game.

When you get the chance to see a game live and experience the atmosphere of the building, it would be irresponsible as a radio host to pass up the chance to share that with your audience. If you are famed New York radio icon Mike Francesa, you know this, so you make sure to bring it up a lot.

The folks behind RN’s Fun House, put together a supercut of Francesa’s show on WFAN in New York on Monday, after the Mets lost Game 5 to the Royals. If you didn’t know yet, Mike was at the game.


If you can’t listen, here’s a lengthy transcription of the times Francesa mentioned he was at the game. Insert your own outlandish New York accent.

Much of the conversation on Monday in New York stemmed from the decision to leave Matt Harvey in for the ninth inning. What did Francesa have to say about that?

“And you all got to manage last night, if you were in the building. And at home most of you, if you had a soul, were saying the same thing. You didn’t want to see Harvey go out there and throw the ninth inning of that game?

I know I did. Sitting there. I did.”

The only way you could disagree with the decision is if you weren’t there AND you didn’t have a soul. Francesa had both a ticket to the game and a soul, thankyouverymuch.



The game was on Sunday night and went into extra innings. It must have been a late one for Mike. Let’s see what he had to say about that.

“I was up at six yesterday doing the NFL and then in the building last night at, like, 12:30 saying, ‘you know what…one of these days I’ve gotta slow down a little bit. You know, it’s a long day.”

It was a long day for Matt Harvey too, going almost a full nine innings with all that pressure. Sure, the fans wanted him to go back out—at least those fans with a soul—but how did they feel?

“I mean, did I feel good about Harvey going back for the ninth? I have to tell you, honestly, being in the building, watching him go through the innings, I felt he would get through the ninth. I have to tell you I felt that. I was not worried about him in the ninth inning.

Maybe if you were in the building you’d have a little stronger feeling that he might have been able to do the job.”

Was Mike talking to someone specifically there, or just the poor New York saps who were not part of the 45,000-plus elite souls who had the fortune of being there? Oh, there was a caller on the line.

Caller: “The crowd obviously wanted it one way. There was no question about that.”

Mike: “Yeah, that was overwhelming. Being in the stadium, it was overwhelming how loud it was. Harvey, when he ran to the mound…when he came out of the inning…I mean, I can’t tell you what it was like in the stadium, folks. People were going nuts. When he ran back to the mound, the place was insane. And the he jumped on the mound!”

Mike was there, but he can’t tell you what it was like. Well, he could, but he had to make sure that caller had a soul first.

Mike: “If you were in the ballpark, like I was last night, there is not a chance in the world you would not have wanted him to take the ball in the ninth inning. He was that good.”

Caller: “Comes out to the mound, he didn’t walk out to the mound. You ever see Matt Harvey jump out to the mound?”

Mike: “Ran. Ran and jumped on the mound. I was there. Ran. Bolted. Bolted out of the dugout, jumped across the foul line, ran to the mound and jumped on the mound.”

Being at the game, who did Mike thing ultimately had a say in the decision to keep Harvey in for the ninth? Was it the pitcher? The manager and his staff? The fans who were there, at the game, in the seats, of the stadium, in New York?

“Do I think the fans had a say last night? I do. I was there. You had 45,000 people chanting for Harvey to come back out for the ninth inning.”

Wait, if Mike was there, at the game, in the seats, of the stadium, was he able to see the interaction in the dugout that led to Harvey staying in the game in the ninth?

“And I was talking to my wife who was home and she was relaying to me what was going on in the dugout, which I really couldn’t see because I was right behind home plate and I couldn’t really see in the dugout. I figured there might be a conversation going on there, but who knew, exactly? And I knew what was unfolding, because she was telling me.”

It’s good to have someone at home who can tell you what’s happening at the game when you are there at the game but can’t see what’s happening at the game. In the press box they have televisions, but they usually don’t have televisions in the stands behind home plate, where Mike was sitting, at the game.

No TV, but Mike did have a good view of the bases.

“I was shocked. I kept saying that in the stands, I’m saying, ‘wait a second, why don’t they put the speedster in.’ Especially the way they’ve been stealing bases.”

Mike was asked if he genuinely thought Harvey would come back out for the ninth, even while the crowd was totally behind him.

“When he left after eight, I gave up and got up and gave him an ovation because I thought he was done. And then I heard about the argument, and the whole thing started to feed itself, and I started to say, ‘wow, you know, jeez. I guess he’s coming out for the ninth inning.’

“I had people texting me, saying ‘what do you think’ and I said to them, ‘I would have thought Familia’ but then my wife’s texted me and said, ‘he’s coming out. They’re having an argument in the dugout. He’s coming out.’ And I said to the guys I was sitting with last night, I said, ‘hey, he’s, you know, Rose says he’s coming out. They, uh, had a whole thing in the dugout and he’s coming out.

That’s when we started saying, ‘wow.‘ And then the building is just chanting for him.”

Okay, them saying “wow” is not exactly him mentioning he was in the building, but I do love the timing of it, that his wife, Rose—note, not Fox analyst Pete Rose—texted him, then he told his pals in the stands, then they started saying ‘wow’ AND THEN the building was chanting for him. Was that all because of his wife’s text? Good thing she wasn’t at the game. With Mike, who was there at the game.

World Series G5 tying run

Being at the game, Mike had a chance to see the tying run in the ninth. What a great play by Hosmer, huh?

“Because Hosmer did not get a good break off third, I saw it. He did not get—I said to myself, ‘oh he’s going to be out, and then there goes the throw flying back to the screen.’

“You did not need to have a good arm, all you needed to have was a accurate arm and he’s out by ten feet. Because that play was right in front of me and he didn’t get a great jump, that play was right in front of me.”

Too bad Mike didn’t have seats on the third base line.

World Series G5 tying run 3b line

As you can see by another angle, by the time the ball reached the catcher—albeit wide—Hosmer was already at the home plate cutout, putting him just about 13 feet from the plate. Given his momentum, and the fact the tag would have needed to be properly applied without blocking the plate, it’s safe to say Hosmer would have been out by way less than ten feet. Maybe even a foot or two, depending on the angle of his slide.

But none of that matters now. The Royals scored, then scored five more in the 12th to win the World Series. So let’s talk more about what it felt like being there.

“And it was a dramatic—I mean, the whole place chanting for him—and people going nuts when he went back out there, and the way he went back to the mound, I mean it was something. It was like a movie script.”

We all know how bad the ending was to that movie. It was less Dark Knight and more Man of Steel, which was such a horrible movie it makes me not even want to see this new Batman v Superma—wait, where were we? Right, we were at Citi Field Monday night with Francesa. Sorry.

The game was on Sunday, so what about all that NFL action? The Cowboys and Seahawks were still on right before the World Series game started, also on Fox. How about those referees, Mike?

“I was trying to watch it on the Fox TV when I was sitting in my seat at Citi Field at the end of the game. I did not see him run out of bounds. I saw a lot of the plays on the last drive, you might be right.”

You see a lot of things sitting behind home plate at a World Series game. Like football. And guys getting hurt at the plate.

“And he went down like he was shot. And when I thought he was badly hurt was when the catcher was screaming, ‘get out here’ because he thought he had broken something.”

I hope Mike realizes we’re just having some post World Series fun with him, and we are absolutely jealous of the fact he got to be in the building behind home plate for the World Series clincher. He’s a lucky guy.

“Listen, I’ve been to a lot of games. I’ve been lucky. I’ve been to hundreds of postseason games. This game, this game was big. This game was incredibly dramatic. The drama built enormously.”

Hundreds? I wanted to do the math to see just how many postseason games Francesa could have possibly been to, and it’s amazing, but he might be right. If we factor in every New York team since he started at WFAN, there have actually been hundreds of postseason games in New York.

The Yankees alone have played in 177 postseason games since Francesa started at the FAN. The Mets, including this year, have played in 55. Even taking half of those away for road games, that’s 116 New York baseball games, give or take home field advantage. Add in the Giants and Jets, Knicks—back when they were good—and the Rangers and there’s the potential for hundreds.

Wow, that is lucky.

About Dan Levy

Dan Levy has written a lot of words in a lot of places, most recently as the National Lead Writer for Bleacher Report. He was host of The Morning B/Reakaway on Sirius XM's Bleacher Report Radio for the past year, and previously worked at Sporting News and Rutgers University, with a concentration on sports, media and public relations.

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