Monday, December 29, 2008

Punt, Pass & Kick

Those three words apply to Mike Francesa's Mike'd Up show last night. Let me explain:

PUNT: Mike obviously spent the most time on the Jets. However, you never heard the words "collapse," "disgraceful," or "choke." Instead Mike told you all about the two key plays in the game - a Pennington TD and a Favre pick. He talked a lot about the inadequate play of the Jets defensive backs. He told you that Favre was bad. He told you the team didn't look like it had any life with six minutes left in the game. But what Mike really did was he punted away responsibility for declaring this Jets season an utter collapse. He wasn't going there. He has had no problem doing that to the baseball team that calls Flushing home. But Mike instead wanted to focus on the Jets DBs.

PASS: Eric Mangini? Did he do a poor job the final five games of the season? Did he reside over a team that was once 8-3 and in Mike's words "a lock for the number two seed"? Did that same team collapse against a weak schedule and stunningly miss the playoffs? Was Mangini in charge of all of that? The answer is yes, but from watching Mike'd Up last night, you would have never known. To say that Mike gave Mangini a pass might be the understatement of the year. Mike thought there was a 50/50 chance that the Jets bring him back. But what Mike didn't do was offer HIS opinion of what the Jets SHOULD do with the head coach. Now, anyone who has followed Francesa for years knows that Mike NEVER has an issue giving his OPINION. So why didn't he offer one up last night? Simple. He knows that he would look foolish. He wants Mangini back. He wants him back for selfish reasons. He wants to be the guy three years from now that says "everyone wanted Mangini out, but I supported him, just like Coughlin and now look where he is..." He wants to give that speech. In order to give that speech, he needs Mangini around for another year or two or twenty. But even FRANCESA couldn't come on the air last night and say that. I mean earlier this week, he told us for the head coach to stay the Jets had to come out and "crush" the Dolphins. Not win a tight game by a point or two. Dominate them. Throw everything including the kitchen sink at Chad. Show ownership that you want to fight for the head coach. Well, that didn't exactly happen, and while much of the blame certainly rests in the hands of number four, isn't the coach accountable? So last night after the Jets did the opposite of what Mike said they needed to do to save Mangini, Mike decided to go easy on Eric. He gave him a bigger pass than Favre has given any of his receivers the past month and a half.

KICK: If you also tuned in to Mike'd Up last night, you were treated to something else that only Francesa can do. In analyzing the game last night, Mike talked about the poor play of Brett Favre, he talked about the awful play of the Jets defense, but he also extended his leg and took a kick at Chad Pennington. In talking about Chad's deep passes yesterday, Mike told you that they were terrible passes, and that he got lucky because the Jet corners misplayed those balls so badly. Now, here's the thing - Francesa might actually be right about that BUT last night was neither the TIME nor the FORUM to be taking swipes at Chad Pennington. Even if those balls weren't the prettiest of passes, he led the Dolphins to the playoffs. Period. He came up to New York in a must-win game and threw zero interceptions. A negative thought should not even be muttered about Pennington. Not once last night did you hear Mike question Mangini's coaching the final five weeks of the season. Not once did you hear Mike call this an utter collapse. Not once did you hear Mike call the Jets a joke (though he did use that word to describe the Cowboys). Not once did you hear Mike condemn the embarrassment that was the end to this Jets season. But you did learn that Pennington tossed some really bad passes yesterday. Kudos Mike. Job well done.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Mr. Contrarian

I'm a few hours behind today and was just able to watch Mike's open. Today Mike woke up in his Long Island home, kissed Roe as he left the bed, got in the shower and threw on his best contrarian outfit. On a day when the national media, the local media, and Jet fans everywhere are screaming for Mangini to be fired, Mike is not ready to go that route. Francesa is drawing a line in the sand. You are either with him or against him. He is harkening back to the days when he and Doggie did not want Tom Coughlin fired when everyone else wanted his head. And since that worked out Mikey's way, he is going to try and do that once again here. Just because the Jets are about to stage as epic a collapse as the New York Mets did with a Hall of Fame quaterback no less, Mike is not ready to hand the man his walking papers. Kind of funny though because he demanded the Mets had to change the manager or the core before heading into the new Stadium. Neither happened. But I digress. Despite Mangini's insane decision-making, Mike has decided that if the Jets play a solid game against Miami, then the head coach stays. Even if they don't make the playoffs. He's ready to hand out pink slips to the coordinators but not Mangini: "I think this week (against Miami) will tell you exactly where he is." Umm, shouldn't yesterday's game have told you exactly where he is? What more do you need Mikey? This is obviously just another one of those "Mike vs the world" moments, where he just can't align himself with everyone else. He's got his best contrarian dress on now and he's not going to be disappointed. So Gang Green fans. Prepare yourself for Mike's Save Mangini Campaign.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Legends of the Fall

Yesterday marked the completion of the Mike'd Up Legends Shows...or better yet, what I like to call the "I have run out of ideas for how to fill 5 1/2 hours a day, I have no co-hosts, am not close to having any revolving guests, still have no new jingle and I just need to distract the masses from all of this" experiment. But the question to you is - what did you think of the Legends shows? Were they Legendary? I caught most of the Strawberry and LT shows, but was unable to catch much of Phil Simms and Mark Bavaro. I found the Strawberry show irritating because Mike constantly interrupted Darryl and would never let him finish a thought. On the other hand, I actually very much enjoyed the LT show. Even though Mike did cut LT off several times, it usually came at moments when LT was slightly incoherent - so I was fine with that. The day LT was on, I was in my car and I decided to switch back and forth between ESPN Radio and Mike'd Up. ESPN Radio was talking local baseball. I am a big baseball guy and would much rather hear baseball talk than reminisce about the old Giants Super Bowls yet again..but ESPN Radio just wasn't cutting it for me. Michael Kay is not Mike Francesa. Say what you want about the arrogance of the big man and we do that here quite a bit, but he still blows away the competition in my mind. Now, if Chris Russo was on ESPN Radio, that's a whole other scenario. But anyway, the point is the Legends Show of LT was a success to me. Strawberry...not so much. I'll leave it to you to inform me about the others. But the bigger issue here is that once again, Mike promised something that he did not follow through on. He promised 2 weeks of Legends Shows. Instead, he had 3 1/2 days of them. This new era of Mike Francesa is becoming the era of broken promises. The Legends are just the latest to Fall.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

This Idea...

Mike had AJ Burnett on a short while ago. AJ admitted to Mike that part of his decision to sign here was the money. Mike was overjoyed that AJ admitted that and praised him for doing so. After the interview, Mike went on and on about how guys always say "it was a dream to play for this team" when it's really about the money. This idea that these guys dreamed of playing for the team bothers Mike. But the problem here is THIS IDEA is MIKE'S IDEA. What players exactly is Mike talking about? Which players have come here and professed their lifelong dream of playing in New York, when in fact they were just hear to collect the dough? Did Johan talk about his lifelong passion to wear the orange and blue? Nope. Did Carlos Beltran sign here and talk about how growing up all he could think of was playing in Flushing? No again. Did Johnny Damon reveal that while he was up in Beantown, all he could think of was wearing pinstripes? Not so much. So Mike, this idea that players come here and lie about how much it was their lifelong dream to play in New York is YOUR idea. This idea doesn't actually exist. You seemed caught off guard when AJ told you that the money was a factor. Why was that even remotely surprising? The man got an $80 million contract and is only 10 games over .500 for his career. So not only was the money a factor...the money was THE factor. I mean this idea that you are commending AJ for letting us in on the fact that the money played a part is a bit much...

Get Lost

Just a week after yelling at CC Sabathia to "get lost" and informing everyone that the hefty lefty was not in Johan Santana's zip code in terms of talent, today Mike Francesa will be interviewing CC. So...how will Mike handle this? Will he try to form a bond over their similarity in terms of weight? Will he call Sabathia out for his embarrassing the Yankees? Will he just brush it all off and joke around with CC like they are old buddies? Will he marvel at CC's performance down the stretch last season? Will he admit to CC that he was "hoping" that the Yanks didn't sign him? What will Mikey do? Tune in and find out...

P.S. Mike also announced that Mark Bavaro's appearance on the show will sort of mark the end of this Legends experiment. So much for two weeks of Legends shows. Nice gimmick Mikey.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Mike Makes My Night

So I was sitting around thinking about tonight's football game between the Saints and the Bears. And actually I was bothered by the fact that I don't have any fantasy players on either team. I was annoyed at this fact because without fantasy players and not being a gambler, I didn't give a shit about tuning in tonight. At first, I was happy when I remembered there was a game being played in a few hours, but then realizing there was nothing at stake, I became somber recognizing there was no reason for me to even watch. But then, Mike Francesa uttered these words:

"This will be a VERY, VERY tough night for Mr. Brees and a very big night for the Tulane rookie (Matt Forte)."

Thank you Mike. Thank you very much. Now I have a reason to watch. Now I have a reason to care. I will be ready to go tonight on the NFL Network hoping for a big night for one Drew Brees and an awful one for Matt Forte...Thanks again Mike for providing my rooting interests for the evening.

ENTHUSIASM

A man becomes preeminent, he's expected to have enthusiasms. Enthusiasms... What are mine? What draws my admiration? What is that which gives me joy? Baseball! A man stands alone at the plate. This is the time for what? For individual achievement. There he stands alone. But in the field, what? Part of a team. Teamwork.

'We're going to start our kinda legends thing we're gonna do here.'
This is how Mike introduced his Legends segment with Darryl Strawberry today. Man does he know how to sell this thing. 'Kinda'? Could ya please bring a little more enthusiasm about this new element to your show? It sounds like he is more interested in individual achievement and not so much on the teamwork thing. Let's just keep a baseball bat out of his hands.

(BTW - Why is Mike still talking about Pettitte? No one cares where he is going. I loved how he said, "Pettitte will pitch hurt." Sure he will, Mike. Then after he's hurt he has to go get the HGH to get better.)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

RANDOM THOUGHTS

* After the short-anticipated open, we are left wanting more. But we should have known that Mike is a slippery fuck(credit Corrado Soprano) and can wiggle out of jams. He doesn't want to talk that much about CC so he doesn't. After one of the most important Yankee signings in recent history, Mike barely talked about CC. We heard words and names like Pettitte, collusion, Rick Peterson, Joba, Frank(Lawrence?), Marte, etc.

* Mike doesn't want to hear how it was Sabathia's 'lifelong dream' to be a Yankee.
He had steered the conversation to these people(I don't know who they are minus a handful of sportswriters) who thought there was collusion. So he went from demonizing a reluctant lefty to a these imaginary collusion conspiracy theorists.
Then he moved onto Andy Pettitte. Now Pettitte isn't front page, second page or even back page news today.

* Mike is apparently trying out for the Carnival by claiming to know the real weight of CC. "Take it from me, he's not 250. If he's a dollar, he's 300." This line was the price of admission today. One big man sizing up another big man. It was like Sy Sperling from Hair Club for Men saying, 'I'm not just the Hair Club president -- I'm also a customer!'

*biggiesmalls gets the door prize today with the reminder that this was supposed to be Legends week. Does Rick Peterson qualify as a legend?

gman26

GOOD TIMES

Yesterday on this blog, most of us - including awesomesean, bigjf and the ever-present anonymous - opined what would happen if CC Sabathia signed with the Yankees after offending Yankee Nation with his apparent disinterest in a $140 million contract. With reports of CC Sabathia signing with the Yanks for $160 million, the worm has turned. I don't think anyone of us thought that Mike would get his comeuppance so quickly.

I turned off yesterday's show after awhile, but during my time listening there were a lot of people, Lisa from Whitestone especially, who called in and echoed Francesa's consternation at Sabathia's procrastination. Maybe later callers questioned Mike's intransigence on Sabathia, but the general feeling from callers was 'we don't want the best free agent lefty pitcher on the market because he hasn't respected our team.'

Well, that stance will be put to the test today. And of course, Yankee fans who listen to the FAN will probably take their cue from Mike. I guess. Francesa hopes there is traffic on his drive into the FAN, so he can mull this one over for awhile. He has to figure out how to spin it. I'm not good at predicting what he'll say, but I think he'll express muted anger at C.C. and then he will start to build A Bridge to Sabathia. After all, if it wasn't for the delayed negotiations, Francesa would have spent the next 4 months building up the legend of the big lefty. 'He misses bats. He eats up innings. etc, etc.'

Regardless of predictions, I think we all are anticipating the show today. Mike doesn't do contrite. Mike doesn't do 'I was wrong.' Mike doesn't forgive(he just conveniently forgets his grudges). So how long will this transition to Sabathia's posterior take place? He's got a lot of time until Spring Training. So I expect him to go slowly today. I think CC will be on probation with Mike for awhile. Mike will make Sabathia sweat for awhile. Not only will Sabathia have to win over New York, he'll have to earn Mike's respect. Good luck, CC.

gman26

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Another's Man gain

quick update from the world of satellite...Russo started off his show gleefully. Why? Because his beloved Giants have entered the Sabathia fray. Dog was absolutely giddy. That would have been great to hear him say that sitting across from Mike, as Mike clenched his Diet Coke, stewing about the disrespect of the Yankees. But that ain't gonna happen. Instead, you read this short snippet and wipe the corners of your eyes as you remember the halcyon days.

"He doesn't know who the Yankees are!"

Apparently, Francesa's feelings have been hurt by C.C. Sabathia. The free agent pitcher has not bowed down at the feet of the great Yankees after they offered him a bunch of money. Francesa was appalled that they flew Reggie Jackson out there to court him. He's appalled at Cashman's feeble description of the negotiations.

"Get out of there. Don't act like this."

This is really not about the Yankees. This is about Mike. Mike doesn't like any challenges to things that he holds sacred. And he also doesn't like when people contradict his predictions and opinion. No doubt, Francesa thought that Sabathia would get all wet once the Yankees called. And when they didn't...

"Have a little pride, if you're Cashman. You're the Yankees! Act like it!"

What he's saying is that Sabathia has hurt his pride. And the Yankees should protect his pride by breaking negotiations off with him.

"I hope a lot that the Yankees don't get him. I don't want him. Get lost."

Now Mike might eat these words. Maybe CC will have a change of heart and sign with the Bronx Bombers. And then what will Mike do? Probably do the ole Favre turnaround. You remember when Mike and Chris complained about all the attention that Favre was getting when he was leaving the Packers? They called ESPN the Favre network. And as soon as Brett came to Broadway, Mike sidled up to him at training camp and sang his praises.

"He's made the Yankees look like fools."

Translation - He made me look like a fool.

Monday, December 8, 2008

RUSSO IS BEANO COOK

So whenever I check into Russo recently, it's like College Gameday. Who knew he was such a fan? Or maybe he isn't. But either way, he's taken to it like a drunk to free whiskey.

It does make sense though. He is talking to a national audience now. The only people in New York who care about college football are more concerned with the spread than any real passion for a school(although apparently hating Rutgers is some sort of NY/NJ metro area pastime. By the way, for all the haters from previous posts, how's that going? Seems Schiano has salvaged this season. And for the record, the only reason I care is because Ray Rice went to my neighboring high school. We don't have many athletes of note come out of 'the 914', so I must represent.)

But he has become very knowledgeable on the subject and he gets in a wide variety of guests in. So good job outta Doggie.

Mike on A-Game today(well...B+)

I'm not telling you anything new, but early December is really when Mike(even sans Russo) shines. That's because the NFL playoff scenarios are hotter than a nun's crotch on Easter Sunday. And this year, Mike has two playoff teams in town. And today, both are coming off a loss. There really is no better day than a Monday when callers phone in to gripe about play-calling, coordinators, officiating, etc. And Mike is the great ringleader. He'll look ahead to upcoming schedules, discuss permutations, calm anxiety, stoke fear, anything to keep listener's attention and at that, he excels. So for all the bashing you take on this site, big man(and we know you're reading), nice job.

To explain the B+...Well after setting the stage in the first segment about the two NY football teams, unprepared Mike finds out the results of the MLB Veteran's HOF commmittee. Joe Gordon, in. Everyone else, out. He doesn't have a lot to say on it except that he's surprised at the large margin from Gordon to the next guy. But as much as a baseball guy he is and this town is, did it really warrant a mention in the second segment? Couldn't this have waited til 3 or 4? It didn't matter. The lines were already full of people wanting to discuss pigskin.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

BS Open

So after opening the show saying how Antonio Pierce is going to cooperate with police and confirming that Plaxico is gone for the year, Mike mentioned the Rutgers game tonight and then dived head into previewing tomorrow night's MAC Championship. Mike is giddy about this game calling it "A fascinating game, a Friday night game, the MAC Championship game. Undefeated Ball State...they play Buffalo tomorrow night.."

Uhh, Mike, we are in New York City. Sorry for all you upstaters, but no one here gives a F_ _ _ about the Mac Championship. I don't give a shit about Nate Davis. I don't care that someone told you he is the next Tom Brady. I don't care about Ball State. It is New York F'ing City. Talk about baseball free agents for the Yanks or Mets. Talk about the Knicks. Talk about the Nets. Go a little crazy and talk Blueshirts hockey. Talk about Roe. Talk about anything but Ball F'ing State.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

MIKE'D UP REPORT CARD

It has now been about three months since the end of the Mike and the Mad Dog radio program...a few months since Francesa and Russo split and went their own ways. Since the holiday season is upon us - a season for giving - I have decided to give my Mike'd Up Report Card. Here goes:

SHOW NAME - GRADE: D

After Dog bolted from FAN studios, Mike made it clear that the Mike and the Mad Dog name would be retired. Just like the surviving members of the Grateful Dead can never tour again using that name, Francesa realized he too would have to rebrand himself. So what did he do? He reached into his NBC handbag and grabbed the name from his Sunday night show "Mike'd Up." This did not happen instantly. If you recall, there were "teams" of lawyers involved. Eventually, the big man got his way. But the problem is that Mike has consistently called the show "Mike'd Up, Francesa on the Fan." Mike, which is it? Mike'd Up or Francesa on the Fan? It can't be both. That's too long and clunky. Much like your questions to guests. But anyway, thank God the lawyers were able to come to an agreement on the use of the title "Mike'd Up." Because it has made all the difference in the world. Or not. You decide.

JINGLE - GRADE: F

After Mike embarked on his new show, much like President-Elect Obama, Francesa promised change. And that change started with a new jingle. No longer would listeners hear "They're talking sports going at it as hard as they can..." A new jingle would be gracing Mike'd Up. This was big news. This was exciting. Could this new jingle possibly rival the old one? Would I find myself humming it to my wife on Sunday afternoons? At first, Mike reported on the progress of the jingle on a daily basis. But then days turned to weeks and weeks turned to months. There were lots of excuses. The jingle company is out West, so it takes longer to get stuff from them. The company is on vacation. Okay, maybe the company is not so good. Okay, maybe we are willing to take jingles that callers create at home. But not some crap that you record on your I-phone. These need to be professionally recorded. Then there were days where Mike would play a few contenders on the air. They were awful, but he seemed to like one or two. Then the jingle talk died, just as quickly as the Jets hopes of a Francesa-guaranteed 2 seed in the AFC. So here we are. No new jingle.

CO-HOSTS - Grade: F

With the new show Mike'd Up, Francesa promised that there would be some new blood in the studio with him. While he initially said he would never again have a co-host, he did say he would put together a few sort of revolving regular guests. He even opened the process up to the Fans, holding auditions at the debacle of a show that was known as the Bar A Disaster. Mike tried out several different people that summer day. They were mostly terrible. Mike's experiment failed miserably. So what did Mike do next? He just pretended that the Bar A auditions never happened. He never spoke of them again. Instead, he moved on to bigger targets. At least, that's what he hinted at for weeks and then months. There were BIG discussions going on. These were COMPLICATED folks. Just give us some time. It takes time to work these things out. We gave you time Mike. And instead of rewarding us, you tortured us with shows featuring Kim Jones, Chris Carlin, Evan Roberts, Joe Benigno and any other Daily News or Post writer you could assemble. This was not what you promised. This was not revolutionary. Now, almost three months later, you told us yesterday that were will be 2 weeks of Legends shows coming up, where legendary New York sports figures will be co-hosting with you. Mike, that's a nice gimmick, but it doesn't solve the issue that you cannot exist doing this show solo. You need another voice in that studio with you on a daily basis. Not for 2 weeks. And not another WFAN staffer. You promised fresh blood. You promised something new. You have not come through in a big spot.

HANDWAVE - Grade: A

Despite every aspect of his show falling to pieces, the one staple that has remained and appears stronger than ever is Mike's dismissive handwave to dump a caller from the line. It's almost as if, in a post Dog world, that this handwave has become more ferocious than it ever was. It's even got to the point where Mike has discussed the handwave on air with a caller. The handwave, in many ways has become the last line of defense for Francesa.

HOST/OVERALL SHOW GRADE: D -

Since Dog went packing to Satellite radio, Mike Francesa has promised a lot. A new jingle. A new format. A new set of co-hosts. A completely new show - one that would make loyal listeners forget one Christopher "Mad Dog" Russo. He has delivered on none of these promises. Instead, he has bemoaned the lack of positive media coverage he received after the break-up, continued to come to work unprepared, launched a war with one of his old-time callers Mike from Montclair, and bored the rest of the audience to death on a daily basis. Perhaps the most alarming aspect of this post Mike and the Mad Dog world is that Francesa seems somewhat oblivious to all of this. He continues to exist in his cocoon of arrogance. He talks and boasts of number 1 ranked shows. He continues to fancy himself as the one and only authoritative voice on sports. He still considers himself the General Manager/Coach of all New York sports teams. To quote my good friend, Colonel Nathan Jessep "You can't handle the truth!" There is no getting around this - Mike'd Up, Francesa on the Fan has failed miserably in its first term. Hell, if it wasn't for the handwave, I would have given the show an "F."

Monday, December 1, 2008

I'M BACK...

...And I'm gone again.

I haven't listened to Mike's show in awhile. Probably 3-4 weeks. But I was intrigued to tune into this afternoon's show. All sorts of good sports headlines...Plax flexing a glock, High Noon for Starbury, the Jets sh*t their Super Bowl bed, BCShenanigans, etc.

So I was encouraged when Mike showed up today as our moral conscience. He told us that what Plax did is wrong(no duh) and his career might be over(uh, Mike. He didn't string up any dogs by their hindquarters.) I love how he brings in Sean Taylor into the discussion even though there is no logical reason to. Taylor was killed in a home invasion. He didn’t have a gun. If he did have a gun, he might still be alive. Plax was showing his heat to a couple of hardbodies at the Limelight and clipped his leg accidentally. Not sure how they’re related but it was nice to see Mike not care about any tangents. He just saw these words 'Black athletes and guns' and it's time for him to spout his cliche stereotypes. (by the way, do we have the club that Burress, Bradshaw and Pierce like to walk heavy into yet? Was it Pastis in the Meatpacking district?)

But then, he starts to show the cracks again. At the end of the first segment, he doesn't even mention the Marbury situation with the Knicks. I mean this is a 'he said, she said' situation with one of the major sports franchises in the city. It's pretty easy talk show fodder. Not even a mention. Then in the next segment, he talks about his sick kid show, which is fine. But then he 'teases' us again with some 'legend' shows. These will be shows where legendary athletes('These are big names people') will sit in with him for a show. He lets us know that most of them will be from yesteryear.

I couldn't believe it. Doesn't this guy get it? Is this like the movie The Producers where he is trying to ruin the show. This new legends theme is his Springtime for Hitler. Mike! Why are you trying to skew older? Those people aren't going to get you more ratings. Wait a while before you do Ed Randall's show. Jiminy Christmas. Try to stay relevant.

Anyway, the point of this post is that I took a leave of absence from the show because it stunk. I came back for a day because there were some good things to talk about. And already, I find out that this is my older brother's show. It goes on the Stinks List.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

WHAT MIKE SAYS GOES

A short while ago, a caller complained to Mike about the end to the Redskins/Seattle game this past week and about the play calling by Skins coach Jim Zorn. The caller pointed out that Seattle had no timeouts left, thus Washington should have just kneeled down, which would have avoided them fumbling, which happened. Mike and the caller disagreed about how many timeouts Seattle had left:

Mike: I was doing the math...

Caller: No, that’s not right.

Mike: They had the timeout (Seattle had one left).

Caller: No, they didn’t!

Mike: Yeah, they had one.

Caller: Seattle had NO timeouts left!

Mike: They had one. I’m telling you Stash, they had one.

Caller: I’ll bet you anything they had ZERO timeouts.

Mike: I’m telling you they had one (left).

Caller: NO they did NOT. Mike, I’m telling you I watched the game closer than anyone.

Mike: I’m telling you they had one. I went and looked.

Caller: They didn’t have one Mike.

Mike: They had one.

Caller: 100% they did NOT have one. With a minute and 40 seconds, he could have ran...(mike interrupts)

Mike: Stash, he could have taken a knee then if he didn’t have any. He wouldn’t have had to run the play.

Caller: He ran a play like an idiot.

Mike: No. No. No. I disagree with you. I think he ran the play because he had one (seattle timeout left). And I did the math because I was watching the game.

After this exchange, there was a commercial break. Now I knew if Mike was right, that he would start off the following segment scolding the caller for being wrong. However, Mike made no mention of the timeout fiasco. So I decided to check myself and it appears that...wait for it...Mike was wrong and the caller was right. Here's a link to the play-by-play (http://scores.espn.go.com/nfl/playbyplay?gameId=281123026&period=4), which shows that Seattle called their final timeout with 1:39 left. The following play, Washington fumbled on a running play...the play Mike said they had to run because Seattle still had a timeout left. What time should we expect the apology from Mikey?

Monday, November 24, 2008

MIKE'S F, MARRY, KILL LIST

Mike opened the show pretty much previewing the Giants/Jets Super Bowl that we are all in store for. But then he talked a little about his favorite NFL player...Peyton Manning:

"The Colts now seem to be headed in the right direction because of the brilliance of Peyton Manning, who was brilliant last night. Brilliant. That 4th down play he made on the goal line - Hall of Fame. The 4th and inches play he made - Hall of Fame. I mean, utter brilliance."

Peyton is one of those athletes that Mike Francesa loves. If he could divorce Roe and marry Peyton, that would suit him just fine. That brings me to the "Mike Francesa F, Marry, Kill" Game. Those who were longtime listeners of Howard Stern know this game. Essentially, pick one person that you think Francesa would love to "F_ _ _" (trying to keep things clean here)...one person he would love to "Marry" and one person he would love to "Kill." Here's my list:

Despite his utter praise for Peyton today, I would say that Mike would "F" Manny Ramirez. It's probably a tough call between Manny, Peyton and Tim Duncan. But I think the allure of the dreadlocks would sway Mike to Manny.

I have no doubt that Mikey would Marry Bill Parcells. That's a no-brainer.

And lastly, Mike would Kill Bill Belichick. On Death Row would be Greg Schiano.

So who makes your "Francesa F-Marry-Kill" List?

Friday, November 21, 2008

THE KNICKS MADE A TRADE, MIKE IS ON AN NFL TIRADE

ESPN.com just reported, which means they took credit for something someone else had reported before them that the Knicks have traded Jamal Crawford for Al Harrington and there is the possiblity that Zach Randolph is also getting moved which if it happened would be a HUGE deal for the New York Knicks. It would get them remarkably close to being under the salary cap for 2010 when there are top flight free agents like a guy named Lebron James.

For me, a guy who is a New York fan, a New York Knicks fan, this is a big deal. This is the kind of move that will help wash away the Isiah Thomas years, and when i say wash away, i mean like how you would wash down being fired and out of a job and sent to Europe to scout no one with a bottle of sleeping pills and then try to put it off on your daughter kind of wash it away. This deal, especially if Randolph is included, would get the Knicks over a big contract hurdle.

I was excited. I was pumped. The Knicks are making solid moves. Donnie Walsh doesn't appear to be a liar, he is following up on what he has said. The team isn't trying to be good now. That's terrific! I tuned in to Channel 53, wanting to get an update on the rumors, wanting to hear what else Mike had to say, maybe he has an NBA writer in the know on the line, maybe that guy that co-hosted for one day but didn't speak at all but who writes NBA stuff.. maybe him. Anyone.. I tune in, i'm psyched, i'm putting the fact that watching Mike hurts my insides and that he stills doesn't have a jingle, a partner or a good show. I am putting all that aside... the Knicks are doing good things.. TALK TO ME MIKEY.. TALK TO ME...

Channel 53 blazes up on my tv screen and i hear.. N.. and then it's followed by F and then followed by L and all hope is lost...

Mike is talking about the NFL game last night that was played I believe between the Steelers and the Bengals. They are not New York teams. They are not the teams in the deal with the Knicks. THEY PLAY IN THE NFL! COME ON, give me a break. So the games are fixed, who cares. The refs are all being paid. Ok. Super. There is a NEW YORK STORY going on. One that affects one of the prominent NEW YORK teams. TALK ABOUT IT!

At 1:48, Mike is opening his mail, reads a brief piece of mail and then makes a passing statement about the trade and that's it. COME ON!

Mike here ya go, here's a jingle for today...
"We are New York and we love basketball, we're gonna take it all, we are the NEW YORK Knicks."

How about this one
"Go New York Go" (that's used for the Knicks too)

TALK ABOUT NEW YORK. TALK ABOUT THE KNICKS. I get it, the NFL is king, but it's the only thing you discuss all week. Here's an actual New York story. You can go all CSI and solve the NFL gambling scandal like you did with Sean Taylor later on...

TALK ABOUT THE KNICKS!

(by the way, if Chris Russo still had a radio show he would certainly be talking about the Knicks)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

WHOSE PORN WAS IT?: WEDNESDAY SHOW OPEN

I sat down wondering how Mike would begin the show today. There really isn't much happening. The "opening salvo" hasn't been tossed out in the free agent world, football is a few days away. What would Mike begin with? Of course, a screensaver.

Mike began the show with yelling at Eddie Erickson to come into the studio because someone had left a screensaver with a naked woman on it. Mike's show is broadcast throughout the country, throughout the world, perhaps to the astronauts in space right now, they cannot see this filth. THEY CANNOT. Mike claimed not to know who put this screensaver on the computer but I say we take a guess.

Here are the options
Joe B: he is the favorite to me
Evan: doesn't feel right
Minko: could it be a passive aggressive "salvo" against Mike?
Carton and Boomer: a very strong option
Christopher Russo: could he perhaps sneak into the studios of WFAN at 4am and put this on Mike's computer? It is not likely since Russo does not know how to use a computer and his idea of a hot girl would be a Tim Lincecum life size poster.

Who could it be?

(a side note, Mike needs to be aware that we can find out all sorts of stuff on the internet. He talks about how none of us really know what other teams are thinking, but that's not really true. Go to www.mlbtraderumors.com and you can see plenty of what is being talked about. The information is everywhere, it's not hard to find. It's actually amazing how little Mike and also Chris have embraced the internet as a source for information. Wouldn't that be helpful?)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

BATTLE OF THE MIKES: Round 3

For those that missed this early in the program, Mike from Montclair went toe-to-toe with Mike Francesa yet again. Here was the call:

MIKE ADMITS HE MADE WRONG PICK

Or not. Yesterday Mike picked Buffalo to beat the Browns at home. As we know, the opposite happened. So instead of coming on the air today and admitting he got the pick wrong, that in fact his word is not gold, Francesa instead lumped all the blame on the awful quaterback play of one Trent Edwards. Francesa moaned about the fact that "Edwards performance set quaterbacking back 10 years."

Ever notice that when a Francesa prediction goes awry, instead of admitting his error in judgement, he instead blames others? I have pointed this out before that when Mike gets a pick wrong, he usually laments that "everyone thought that would happen" but when he gets something right it's "I picked that." But today, Trent Edwards "stinks" and is to blame for Mike's incorrect pick. And Breaking News: Mike does not think this Jets game this week will be an "easy game." Wow. They are playing the only undefeated team in the NFL and Mike does not think this will be an easy game for Gang Green. Great call Mike. Great call.

Monday, November 17, 2008

FRANCESA'D UP

Mike spent the entire beginning of the show on the controversial non-touchdown by the Steelers defense at the end of yesterday's game versus the Chargers. Essentially Mike believes two things:

MIKE BELIEF #1: "This game looks bad..." Mike went on to say that something was fishy about the way that game ended and that there was no way that touchdown should have been taken off the board. Something was not right here.

MIKE BELIEF #2: "I do not think for one second there is any corruption here (with the NFL)."

So Mike, which is it? If something is "fishy" as you stated, then aren't you in fact claiming the NFL was up to something corrupt here? Mike then went on to say this about the NFL: "When they get to these coverups like this, they talk out of both sides of their mouth."

Someone else appears to be talking out of both sides of their mouth...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Chris and Mike Talk

A kind commenter here has provided this link of a Chris Russo interview with WEEI in Boston. Russo mentions that he saw and spoke with Mike Francesa for a while on Friday night. Here is a link to the Russo interview:

http://audio.weei.com/m/audio/21415153/chris_mad_dog_russo.htm

And here is my best bet on how the conversation went down:

Chris: Anndddd Goooddd Eveningggg Mike, on this Friday November 7th. And how are you tonight??

Mike: Fine.

Chris: Lots to talk about in the world. You got this Pats/Jets game on Thursday. The Phillies proved to be a pretty feisty team. You got the politics...And one more thing, you have those 2 months that you and I haven't spoken to each other since I bolted from FAN. Where do you wanna start?

Mike: Wherever.

Chris: Okay, lets go with Jets/Pats...This idea that the Jets could be a Super Bowl team is...

Mike: (interrupting) Dog, we gotta start with us.

Chris: Excellent point Mike. Excellent point.

Mike: Dog, the fact of the matter is that I still have the number 1 ranked sports talk radio show in the country.

Chris: Now hold on a minute there Mike. Let's be fair here. You've had more people in there for auditions trying to fill my spot than that Osama guy had at his presidential rallies. (LAUGHING) Say something funny Mike.

Mike: Dog, my show still gets better ratings than yours. And you've got Raismann and all your friends defending you left and right, and taking shots at me everyday, but I still outrate you every week.

Chris: Ahhh Mike...CMON!! Could ya please!! That show of yours isn't a patch on Lincecum's fanny! You have done a TERRIBLE job without me.

Mike: I'm still Number One Dog.

Chris: OHH CMON!! would ya please!!! You've got Mike from Montclair and I've got Butch from Biloxi. Who's got the bigger audience now? Now you wanna say hold on a minute there Dog, some truck driver in Mississippi doesn't count? Okay, you could say that...

Mike: (interrupting)..Dog, Have you asked Mel what your stock's at right now? You might wanna see where that number is at..I know where ours is - it's #1.

Chris: PIPE DOWN!!! And another thing, I never had to wait on line to use the bathroom at Yankee Stadium. They DO NOT need a new Stadium. They need a new Stadium like Jeanne needs another diamond ring...

Mike: Dog, I don't know where you've gone to the bathrooms, but those lines were TERRIBLE. They need the new Stadium. That Stadium was not the old Yankee Stadium...It wasn't. I once missed an entire at-bat when Andy was on the mound waiting for the bathroom...

Chris: OH COME ON!!!! The bathrooms were fine!!!! That is an ATROCIOUS argument by you!

Mike: Dog, the fact of the matter is I still have the number 1 ranked sports talk show...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Coach Francesa Calls for the ATQ

Coach Francesa offered up his gameplan for the Jets this week against the Pats:

"I wanna see them put pressure on the quarterback. I'll even give up a big play to Moss. I want them early on to attack the quaterback. In recent games, they've been doing a lot of blitzing...they've been throwing some Cowboy blitzes in there, they're shooting guys off the corners, they've been timing their blitzes well. ATTACK THE QUATERBACK. A-T-Q. That's the way to play this game. Put this kid on his rear end. Knock him down early. Make him play tough. I'd rather see Moss get a 90 yarder then for him not to take hits early in the game. Take your chances. Go get him. I'll tell ya - I'll even single Moss and run my risk at times early in the game until he beats me once. Make the kid throw the deep ball...ATTACK THE QUARTERBACK."

Nothing like some X's and O's with the Coach...

The Hall of Fame Game

Mike opened the show today praising Kurt Warner:

"when you look at his statistics, realize he won a Super Bowl and lost a Super Bowl, you know that's all Brett Favre's ever done. Win a Super Bowl and lose a Super Bowl. Peyton Manning's only won a Super Bowl. Kurt Warner, who's won an MVP, Kurt Warner is probably a Hall of Fame quaterback. I mean, that's hard to...when you think about it, if I was gonna name guys, you probably wouldn't think of (him) but he is probably close to being a Hall of Fame quaterback...his career numbers are getting to be staggering."

Now, in the past when one Chris Mad Dog Russo was part of this show, a statement like that by Francesa would open up the show to what I call the "Hall of Fame" game...Dog would throw out a player and Mike would hold court like he was a judge listening to the evidence...then callers would flood the phone lines all day asking Judge Francesa if Player A or Player B was a Hall of Famer. But here's my question. Will the Hall of Fame game work without Russo? In the past, this would have easily occupied 2-3 hours of the show, but I am very interested to see what happens today. In yesteryear, Dog would have reached for that Football Encyclopedia and started to fire off names left and right. But as we know, the Dog was left unleashed and now the blind man must navigate a once sure-fire gimmick all by himself...

Monday, November 10, 2008

Francesa Vs Florida

First it was the Tampa Rays. Now it's the Miami Dolphins. What is it that Francesa has against the Sunshine State? Is Mike angry that they went blue this election year? Mike is not ready to talk Miami Dolphins football:

"I don't take them seriously yet. I watched them yesterday. They were very lucky to win that game against Seattle. Very fortunate...I didn't think the Dolphins were very good yesterday..They have a very easy schedule at 5-4, but maybe it's me, I just don't take them seriously yet. I just don't. I just don't think they're that good yet."

This sounds strangely familiar to what Francesa said for months about a certain baseball team based in Florida. Now, the Dolphins are not the Rays. But you would think Mike would learn that anything can happen in sports. I mean, he did say last week that there was "NO CHANCE" Penn State loses to Iowa this past weekend and well, we all know how that turned out...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

ROUND MOUNDS

As I glance at the Fan website, it states that Charles Barkley will be Mike Francesa's guest at 2:30. Although I have listened to MMD over the years, I can't recall Mike and Chris' opinion of the Round Mound of Rebound. Considering Barks is known for running his mouth, I can't imagine they had much nice to say. Mike and Chris usually don't like people who talk as much as them...

"Could ya please Charles, just pipe down and stick to basketball. The whole idea that the people of Alabama are going to vote for him as Governor..."
"Dog, I'm not a big believer in athletes running for political office. I'll give you Gerald Ford, Reagan and Largent but Sir Charles..."

...I'm wondering what exactly has prompted this visit by Barkley. Is this about politics? Is Charles selling a grill? Either way, it should make for appointment listening. Speaking of which, I have an appointment at 2:30, so I will miss this. Enjoy.

YES OR MSG: THURSDAY IS D DAY

You thought the biggest decision you had to make was on election day, but the reality is that there is a way bigger decision out there for Mr Mike Francesa, YES or MSG? The decision really isn't even his, it's up to YES to match the offer.
You can see why MSG would choose to make an offer, it fills five hours of air time where currently repeats of MSG NY and Knicks and Rangers repeats sit. For the same reason you can see why YES would want to keep it, it fills five and a half hours of time that otherwise would be filled with the Alvaro Espinoza Yankeeography.
The rumor is that YES would like to expand it's original programming and that's what would fill the void left by Francesa taking his keg of Diet Cola to MSG.
Given the World's Most Famous Arena's sensitivity to criticism, the big question is if Francesa takes his multi titled no jingle or partner having show to MSG will he be able to let loose on the Knicks and Rangers without seeing the name James Dolan on his caller id?

With Neil Best on vacation we are simply going to have to wait for the big man himself to make the announcement. I am sure that he will be taking the air pump to his ego and blowing it up beyond capacity as he discusses the bidding war for his top rated show.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

CHANGE WE DON'T NEED

As Francesa lovers/haters, we always get a little gleeful when a horse Mike backs, loses. So I'm sure some of you were sort of anticipating Mike's take on the Presidential election this afternoon. Would he eat a little crow? Would he do a reversal and back Obama? Would he try to minimalize Obama's victory with a little, 'This thing's been over for awhile. I mean, George Bush basically handed the election to Obama. It's not like he did anything special...' He didn't do any of the above. Instead, he basically ignored the most significant election in our lifetime. His brevity given to the subject spoke volumes. He opened the show with 'Does is feel like a different America today?' And then, in one of the most absurd transitions, he opined that people weren't worried about politics anymore. They were worried about baseball.

Bravo, Mike. Bravo.

Now I really didn't think Francesa was going to give any credit to Obama. But here is a history buff whose hero is JFK. How many times has Obama and his campaign been compared to Kennedy. Uh, a lot. But Mike wasn't having any of it. He does what he wants and gosh darnit if anyone tells him otherwise. So Mike crawled back into his dinosaur skin and After spending approximately :25 on Obama he proclaimed, "Today, it's about November. And it's about building baseball teams."

Maybe we've all had a little too much change in the last 24 hours. It's good to see some things stay the same.

Mike and Chris Analyze the Election

Chris: Andddd Gooood Afternooon Everybodyyy on this Wednesday November 5th...the GOP in D.C. is piggybacking. And how are you today Mike?

Mike: Fine.

Chris: Lots to talk about today. We got this whole Marbury thing. The President..where do you wanna start Mike?

Mike: Wherever.

Chris: Well I just don't know know what the Knicks are doing. This idea that Marbury is just gonna sit on the bench the whole...

Mike (interrupting): We can't start with the Knicks..We got to start with the election.

Chris: Excellent point Mike. Excellent point.

Mike: Dog, it was ovuh before it even started. There was no drama. No excitement. Roe and I were actually a bit bored watching it.

Chris: Mike, that was a terrible job by the McCain campaign with this election. A TERRIBLE job.

Mike: Dog, what did you want them to do? The man is a war hero. But he couldn't come through in a big spot.

Chis: Ahhh listen Mike. You just can't lose the election that quickly last night. You gotta be a little more feisty than that.

Mike: Dog, I talked to someone close to the McCain campaign yesterday and they said they knew this was going to be the outcome all day.

Chris: Oh really??!!

Mike: Yeah my source said they were expecting this and this election was pretty much gonna be a no-brainer.

Chris: But Mike, now America is in a tricky spot..You got Ojama as the new President.

Mike: Obama.

Chris. Right, Obama. But you got the country in a tricky spot. I can't go too crazy about this Obama guy. He's got about as much political experience as Timmy.

Mike: Dog, it's a historic day. But you gotta give a lot of credit to McCain and his speech last night.

Chris: Excellent point Mike. Let's be fair here. That was a TERRIFIC speech by McCain.

Mike: And that Palin, she's a gamer.

Chris: She sure is. And one more thing Mike, do I need to see Jesse Jackson crying every other second? Did I need to see that last night? Did I? I mean pipe down.

Mike: It's a historic day Dog...but that Sarah Palin sure is charming...

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

PETTYSBURG ADDRESS

In honor of Election Day, I'll intone a great president to shed light on all things sports radio and blog:

Four days and seven weeks ago our fathers brought forth, upon this market, a new radio landscape, conceived in ego and pettiness, and dedicated to the proposition that "all talk show hosts are not created equal"

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that landscape, or any landscape so conceived, and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of it, as a final resting place for those who died here, that the radio shows might live. This we may, in all propriety do. But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow, this blog -- The brave men who struggled here, have hallowed it, far above our poor power to add or detract by various commenters. The world will little note, nor long remember what we write here; while it can never forget what they did here.

MIKE'D UP, FRANCESA ON THE FAN, MEET THE PRESS: ALL IN ONE ELECTION EXTRAVAGANZA

There are many choices to be made today. Who to vote for President, Senate, Congressman? Whether you are for or against proposition 48 (i have no idea what that is, i just picked a number and put the word proposition in front of it).

Then there are more important decisions to be made like where you will be getting your election day information from. There are many more choices than the ones you have for the highest office in the land. You can go everywhere from CNN to MSNBC, to Fox News, to Headline News, to the Daily Show to WFAN. What, WFAN is an all sports station isn't it? It's the home of the 20/20 flash and Evan Roberts and Mike Francesa and they don't know anything about politics, do they?

Well, Mike Francesa has read a lot of books about John F Kennedy. There you have it, he is a political expert.

It is actually the perfect situation for Mike'd Up/Francesa on the Fan to become Meet the Press with your host Mike Francesa. There is nothing going on in the world of sports, the Jets are in first, the Giants are in first, the Knicks are terrible, no one cares about hockey, it's a perfect opening for him to spend the entire day talking about the election. With all that said...

We here at Mike and the Mad Blog are officially announcing our support for Mike Francesa as the host to take us through this monumental day in the history of our country. He will make predictions on electoral votes, he will use sports analogies, he will have Jim Nantz take you through the battleground states and Jon Heyman give insight on Obama's cabinet picks.

660 WFAN, Mike'd Up, Francesa on the Fan, the one stop shopping for Jets analysis and election coverage!

Be Careful

We here at the Mike and the Mad Blog have something to say...BE CAREFUL about writing us off just yet. Are we down? Sure. Are we out? Absolutely not. We know we have dropped the ball in recent days. It's been a combination of work issues and Francesa issues (his completely uninteresting show). But be careful about ringing the bell on this blog...Imagine if Rocky had been counted out against Apollo Creed in their rematch. We're just like the Italian Stallion. We've been hit hard. We're a bit dazed. We're slightly woozy..but we're reaching for that rope. We think we'll make it before the 10 count.

Monday, November 3, 2008

TODAY'S POST

what happened on either show today?

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

We apologize for the lack of blogging today, but sometimes work gets in the way...In honor of Halloween, please submit costume ideas that you would love to see Francesa dressed up in...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Price is Wright

We thought this was an excellent title for a post, but we have yet to figure out what the post should be about. So we are turning to you to fill in the content for this post. The Price is Wright. What does this mean? Fill in the blanks here..

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

GET YOUR FACTS HERE

Can someone please buy Francesa a fact? Again, he continued his campaign against David Wright:

"There is no comparison between Wright and Longoria. The comparison is that Longoria has hit 6 postseason homeruns and Wright's never hit one."

Mike. Please do me a favor. Go get your big baseball encyclopedia out and look up David Wright's 2006 postseason. You might be surprised that he has actually hit a postseason homer. Eddie Erickson, what the hell do you do? This should be your job to provide Mike facts when he makes false statements. Is anybody ALIVE OUT THERE!!!?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

THE WAVE

One of the more bizarre phone calls EVER with Francesa and Mike from Montclair just went down:

Mike from Montclair: Before you give the little wave, which is your way of getting rid of us...

Francesa: No it's not. That's not...

Mike from Montclair: I see the little wave...

Francesa: Wait a second now...now how many people do you think see, of my audience, how many people do you think see the TV?

Mike from Montclair: I would say less than 10%.

Francesa: ok. And they're the only ones that see the wave. And the wave is better than this - it's better than me saying "thanks for the call" or something like that on every different....

Mike from Montclair: But why do people call you up and thank YOU for taking their call? That's what YOU do. Why do people feel like they have to thank you?

Francesa: Did you wake up on the wrong side of the bed...I mean I know it's raining out but boy.

Mike from Montlcair: I'm surprised I'm allowed back on your station after the tongue lashing you gave me a few weeks ago about having the audacity to comment on the other talk show hosts...

Francesa: Here's why. You know why. Dont you feel...

Mike from Montclair: Kim said Johan Santana had 19 wins!!!!!

Francesa: now wait a second. wait a second. You brought it up. I didn't. You are....let me just speak...you are A, a very good calller...B, a frustrated talk show host, but don't you feel as a very opinionated caller that you are, that you were hurtful to those people when you call up and say such nasty things about them?

Mike from Montclair: First of all, I wasn't saying anything personal against those guys. But I simply said and I stand by it, if I wanted to listen to Joe Benigno, I would turn the radio on at 10AM in the morning...if I wanted to listen to Kim Jones, I would put the radio on at 5 in the morning...

Francesa: And I'm sure you do.

Mike from Montclair: No I don't.

Francesa: And listen, you have to admit if you're gonna be truthful, you have to admit that you're a frustrated talk show host.

Mike from Montclair: No I'm not! I'm really not...

Francesa: Wait a second....I actually called you doing that ham and egg radio show and you were up at night doing that ham and egg radio show because you're a frustrated talk show host.

Mike from Montclair: It's fun! Who wouldn't want it...

Francesa: There you go...Now I got it...

Mike from Montclair: Okay,can I make my point. This isnt about me...

Francesa: Wait a second. You've made about 8 points but you can make one more...

Mike from Montclair: I just wanna make 2 more...first of all, it's nice to see the next Brooks Robinson get a hit last night...

Francesa: He'll be a better hitter than Brooks Robinson.

Mike from Montclair: ....and lastly...that home plate umpire should have been ashamed of himself...

Francesa: I already did that and you should have listened to the first 10 minutes. Shame on you. (Smiling) And I just handwaved you. That's it. So you can go back on YES and see that.

The Buck Stops Here

So I found myself getting into the Tampa/Philly game last night. I mean, hey, the World Series was very well about to end and while I am big Mets fan rooting against the Phillies, I am still a baseball fan. So even if it meant watching Rollins and Utley jump up and down, I was going to subject myself to that agony. But something else happened. I found myself getting increasingly annoyed at Joe Buck of Fox. In tbe words of one Chris Russo, that was a TERRIBLE JOB by Buck last night. There were four different points that Joe Buck made last night that I thought were all ridiculous and over the top. Here they are:

BUCK UP #1: This was the least of the crimes. But Buck and Tim McCarver went on for a couple minutes about how Joe Maddon was the nicest, most forthcoming, honest, open, manager they have ever dealt with. That's great. Terrific. Makes me feel all mushy inside. But here's a question: Who cares? Who gives a shit? What does that have to do with whether or not Tampa is going to stage a miraculous comeback against the Phillies? It doesn't matter. That sort of analysis should be left to others, not national broadcasters who are supposed to be impartial.

BUCK UP #2: This was when I started to realize that Buck was in the tank for the Rays. Early and often, Joe Buck made mention of several questionable pitches that were called balls for Scott Kazmir. The point was clear. Buck didn't think those pitches were balls and when Hamels got close strike calls, he kept going back to Kazmir not getting close calls. Listen, as I stated above, I was rooting for Tampa, but this was starting to annoy me. Your national broadcasters should not be taking sides. Buck did that all night long.

BUCK UP #3: This was the biggest head scratcher for me. After the 5th inning, Joe Buck repeated about a hundred times that this was "now an official game." Now, you might be thinking "what's so bad about that?" The point is that by making that statement over and over again, Buck was implying that the World Series may very well be decided by a rain-shortened and stopped game. That is completely and utterly insane. Do you really think that Bud Selig and Major League Baseball were going to allow a World Series (not just a game, but the ACTUAL SERIES) to be decided by a rain-shortened game? No way. No how. No chance. MLB would have come up with some revised plan to finish the game the next day or something. But Buck kept going on and on about how this was "now an official game." As Gman pointed out to me today, did they even get a statement from Major League Baseball? If so, they never mentioned it. They also made a HUGE deal after the game was stopped about the run that Tampa scored to tie it. Honestly, did they really believe if that run didn't score that that was it - that's Tampa's season was going to be cut short right then and there? There was no way the World Series was going to be decided by rain, but Buck kept implying that was very well at stake.

BUCK UP #4: In the final inning that was played last night, BJ Upton was on first base with 2 outs. Joe Buck carried on that this game NEEDED to be stopped. Why did the game need to be stopped? Simple. It was taking the Tampa Bay Rays' biggest asset - their speed - away from them. Therefore, and NOT because the field was affecting BOTH teams, the game needed to be stopped. Buck went on to say how it was practically impossible for Upton to steal a base in these conditions. There was no chance. Forget the fact that Cole Hamels seemed a bit concerned, as he threw over to first repeatedly. But according to Buck, you couldn't possibly steal a base. The field was a disaster. It was stripping the Rays of their speed. And then what happens? Upton EASILY steals second and scores on a single. What did Buck say? Nothing. Now, don't get me wrong. The game DID need to be stopped and the field WAS awful, but the announcers should be pointing this out for BOTH sides, not implying that the field is ONLY hurting Tampa. Last time I checked, the Phillies had some speed as well.

The Buck stops here.

MISTAKE'D UP

In lieu of a long post bashing Mike Francesa, I'll let another blog do the work for us. Awful Announcing does a great job of covering bad broadcasting. And occasionally, Mike Francesa falls into that category.

http://awfulannouncing.blogspot.com/2008/10/danyelle-sargents-bill-walsh-gaffe-was.html

Monday, October 27, 2008

Wright or Wrong?

Mike just revisited his timeless "David Wright sucks and is the reason for everything that is wrong in America" argument. Here was Mike just a short while ago:

"But again, Longoria has had a terrible World Series, but he did hit 6 home runs in the first 2 playoff series. Six. That's an extraordinary number of homeruns. Now he has had an o-fer World Series, but can we wait until Wright hits A post season homerun.!?"

Uhh, Mike. Hate to break the news. But Wright hit a homer against the Cards in the NLCS two years ago. But let's not let facts get in the way of things. Carry on.

Friday, October 24, 2008

THE MIKE AND THE MAD BLOG INTERVENTION

A commenter on this very blog has called us out for essentially losing our fastball. He claims, in this post Mike and the Mad Dog world, that we have become unfunny. We have basically become a one trick pony. And we agree. It has suddenly occurred to myself, Lt. Weinberg and Gman, that we have quite possibly hit rock bottom. When we started out, we were devoted to writing a blog about the Mike and the Mad Dog Show (hence the name of the blog), but then they broke up and we were thrown for a loop. Kevin Costner from JFK sort of captures the effect of the MMD split, “We're through the looking glass, people. White is black. And black is white." And ever since the departure of Chris Russo, Mike’s performance and his show have suffered immeasurably. We have harped on this for way too long. And while Mike’d Up Francesa on the Fan is certainly down in the dumps, we too, have fallen quite a bit. We recognize that we are in the midst of some dark days. We are no longer the fun-loving, sharp, witty blog that we once were. We have deteriorated into something far worse and are facing demons we never anticipated. We have become a shadow of what we once were. We have become a heroin addict reaching for his needle. We have become addicted to a dependence on criticizing Mike Francesa on an hourly basis. We find ourselves facing a personal crisis. The bottom line is simple. We need an Intervention. And we are turning to you, our loyal readers, to help bring us out of this dark period. You are to us what Jeff VanVonderen and Candy Finnigan are to A&E's Intervention. We are asking you to write comments encouraging us to turn things around. Each comment should start with the following line “You’re addiction to being down in the dumps with Francesa has affected me in the following ways...” And then list the ways that it has affected you. Tell us what we were like before this awful change. Tell us what you liked about us. We are determined to see the light. We are seeking help and a route to redemption...

What We Have Learned Today

We have learned that Mike tuned in to the Today Show this morning and saw it was 28 degrees. We have learned that he turned the show off when he saw what was going to happen to the Stock Market today. We have learned that Ron Darling, his guest co-host today, had a big meal this morning. We have learned they are doing the show from Mohegan Sun. We have learned that only Derek Jeter and Bernie ever ran hard 100% of the time. We have learned that Mike Piazza ran hard on groundouts, but sometimes not so on fly balls. We have learned that it's not cool to run balls out anymore. We have learned all about the maturation of Cole Hamels. We have learned that it is a Football Friday so we will spend several segments on the Breeders Cup. We have learned that Mike got a call from Willie Randolph. We have learned that Willie told Mike he had a great interview with the Brewers about becoming their manager. We have learned that since Mike is publicly reporting this on the radio, the Brewers will likely get pissed and look elsewhere. We have learned that Mike has made Ron "Omar" for the day and asked what he would to do the Mets. We have learned that Ron would eat Castillo's contract. We have learned that Mike had no problem with that notion, yet nearly ripped a callers head off yesterday who suggested the same thing, to which Francesa replied the "mets will never eat $18 million!!!!" We have learned that Ron won't go after Manny. We have learned Ron considers Delgado part of the core. We have learned that Ron is not willing to give Murphy an everyday job, but would live with Tatis and Murphy as an everyday leftfield platoon. We have learned that Ron would not pay K-Rod, but wouldn't mind Fuentes. We have learned that Ron would go and sign Derrek Lowe. We have learned that Ron thinks Maine could become a closer. We have learned that Mike asked Ron to be the Met GM for the day, but keeps throwing trades and signings at Ron without letting Darling have an original thought of his own. And what we have not learned yet, is why Mike hasn't demanded to Ron that the Mets break up the core and trade Wright.

THE MIKE AND JOE SHOW? BENIGNO WINS THE CO HOST SWEEPSTAKES?

This from Neil Best...

October 24, 2008

Is Joe Benigno new sidekick for Mike Francesa?
Neil Best
October 24, 2008

If Joe Benigno lands the gig as Mike Francesa's WFAN sidekick, they ought to put up a historic marker to commemorate the occasion in the station's third-floor men's room.It is there, Benigno informed the world on Oct. 10, that he spends an hour or more before dawn most days, reading newspapers, seeking solitude and, um, getting his game face on."We've learned too much new," Francesa said, speaking for all of us as Benigno described his morning routine in their first segment together - and everyone in the studio vowed never again to borrow a tabloid from him.Gross, yes, but also good radio, and reminiscent of another quirky character who used to sit across from Francesa in Astoria.
Will that sort of thing be enough to land him in Chris Russo's old seat? Quite possibly, yes.Until I can get Francesa or Mark Chernoff to confirm it, it doesn't count, but the buzz around the station is that Benigno is the favorite in a sweepstakes that likely will conclude within a week or so.No further guest co-hosts are scheduled after Ron Darling today, and barring a late entrant from outside the station, the choice will come from those who already have been paired with Mike.There are shortcomings in each candidacy, but Kim Jones left Francesa and Chernoff with an interesting contrast to ponder after her session with Francesa on Wednesday worked better than the crowded sessions with Chris Carlin two weeks ago.Jones brings a non-male, non-fan, non-native New Yorker sensibility that tends to elevate the level of discussion - assuming that's allowed on sports talk radio.Most importantly, Francesa seems comfortable with her, as in an amusing exchange as the show ended Wednesday:"You can never be too rich, too thin or have too much pitching; that's all you have to know about life," Francesa said."Amen," Jones said. "I wish I knew the first two. I don't care about pitching."Let's just say that line wouldn't have worked as well from Benigno. (Much as the third-floor bathroom story would not have come out quite the same if Jones had told it.)And that hints at the only real negative of going with Joe.It would be a widely popular pick, preserve some of the "Mike and the Mad Dog" vibe and allow for a seamless transition in the afternoon from midday, where Carlin would be a logical pick to replace Benigno opposite Evan Roberts. But it also would represent a missed opportunity.Francesa originally hoped for a creative solution, such as finding someone younger to broaden the show and to develop a potential successor. He explored several possibilities, none of which worked out before he began his guest host parade three weeks ago.So, here we are. Benigno is older than Francesa and is at his best ranting about the Jets and Mets, which often is entertaining but can wear thin over 5 1/2 hours.And a new lineup with Benigno in the afternoon and Carlin in midday would have the following effect on the diversity of the hosts on the three most prominent shows post-Russo:It would evolve from six white guys (four who grew up on Long Island, one in New Jersey and one in Westchester) to six white guys (three from the Island, two from Jersey and one from Westchester).Not that there is necessarily anything wrong with that. Benigno would be a safe pick for our risky times, and there is something to be said for that.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Talk Show Host

Listening to Mike interview Jim Haslett, he asked Jim about “the quarterback.” It occurred to me that much in the same way that Mike uses Vegas odds as a measuring stick for what will happen in life, he also will only refer to athletes or management by the title of their position. It’s always:

“the running back”
“the shortstop”
“the centerfielder”
“the owner”
“the closer”
“the kid” (short for rookie)
“the coach”
“the point guard”

That got me wondering to why Mike does this. I feel there must be a deeper psychological reason behind this. That somehow when Francesa does this, he is making himself superior to the person. By not using their real names, they are in fact just pieces in Mike’s chess board of life. “If the kid doesn’t get the job done, then the coach has got to move the centerfielder to his spot..” It’s all a game with moving pieces. I really think there is a condescending nature to the way Mike addresses these people when he uses these simple titles. It’s almost as if by doing so, he separates himself from them on a personal level and can then carry out any verbal attack he so pleases. But by using their names more often, it creates a tougher bond to break. “The closer doesn’t know when to shut his mouth” comes off a lot less personal than “Billy Wagner doesn’t know when to shut his mouth.” What do you think? The blogger wants to know...

What have we learned today?

We've been away the first couple hours. So fill us in. What have we learned? Are the Phillies the new Yankees? Are cell phones still the death of our nation? Do we have a jingle yet? What have we missed?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Camera Phones Bringing Down America

You thought it was the economy that was killing our country? Or perhaps fears of another terrorist attack? Health care? Try again. Francesa just nailed down the real problem in our nation:

"He (Joba) can't go anywhere. He can't...that camera phone is the biggest pain the neck in America for anybody anywhere because..listen, I'm not putting myself on the level with any of these guys (uhh yeah you are), but I can tell you that I have sat out at dinner and seen someone at the next table taking a picture of me with the phone, with my wife. And seen them trying to act like they're on the phone and they're snapping pictures...people know me a little bit. I'm not Joba Chamberlain...my point is those guys see that in their face everywhere they go and those phones are the most annoying things in history."

1st and Favre

Well here we are. 55 minutes into the show and it's all Brett Favre. Funny. For a radio station and a host that often bashes the media for talking about Brett Favre too much, one Mike Francesa has jumped right on the bandwagon. Kim Jones rides shotgun today. The duo is dressed in their Wednesday Blacks. Kim going with the underhead Francesa-style headphones. Mike has gotten down to the bottom of this lastest controversy surrounding number 4 by asserting that someone has lied. Wow. That is shocking. Kim thinks Favre is just like us because "he wears Wranglers." Ummm, I don't wear Wranglers. Do you? And even if you did, would an NFL quarterback of Brett's stature really be "just like us." Uhh. No. But Mike and Kim are all over this story. Mike says Favre should have just come clean and admitted he lied. Mike, have you come clean about David Wright? Have you come clean about your utter disrespect for the Rays? Have you come clean about your incorrect statement that the Rays "stood no chance" in Game 7? But anyway, Kim is very worried about how this Favre situation might distract the Jets. That's cute. Mike has nicely segued into the "whole idea of" Brett struggling with the playbook. Mike thinks Brett just wants to "bing bing, run the routes, do this, let's play. He wants the French pastry taken out of this offense." I wonder if Doggie was here, if they would have spent this much time on the Favre thing today...Mike, it's about 3rd and 25 right now...I hope you have some sick play left in your book...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

FIXING FRANCESA

The words BORING, TERRIBLE, BORING, AWFUL, BORING, LAME, BORING, have all been used to to describe the post Mike and the Mad Dog radio show run by Mike Francesa. Those words are all accurate. They are deserved descriptions of what has been a collection of many bad radio shows over the past few months. These are the facts. We all know this. The question is WHAT NOW?

We all like to sit here and criticize the show, criticize Mike, probably Mike more than the show but maybe both equally, but it's time for us to get productive. We at Mike and the Mad Blog need to fix this thing.

Here's the deal, we are asking you to provide your suggestions on what would make a more compelling show, from a co-host, to a jingle, to segments, whatever it is, you have an idea share it. Then we will submit the collection of ideas to Mark Chernoff.

It's an election year, let's have our voices heard. Mike clearly cannot fix this on his own.

THE COHUUH

Mike opened up today with Chris Carlin at his side(btw, aren't sidekicks supposed to be complimentary? With these two, it's like Costello and Costello or Hardy and Hardy). Mike has continued on with his failure to address the Rays and their small market success. Even though he said that Rays owner Stuart Sternberg was coming on later, he tried to diminish their success by mentioning that he has been on before and basically, Mike'd Up has 'been a good luck charm for the Rays'.

So they're talking about the Jets and arguing points that don't really have a point. I know it's a slow sports day but this is boring. Couldn't they talk about the Elite XC folding and Kimbo Slice's future prospects?

The good news is that Mike announced that 'the Mets owner will be on later today'. He didn't even say his name. Regardless, this is must listen or watch TV or radio. Let's see how Mike approaches the non-existent David Wright controversy. Will he talk about the Met cohuuh? Will Wilpon even use the word core, and if he does, will it sound like regular English?

What else can we anticipate with the Wilpon conversation?
(update: Mike just said 'Jeff' as in Jeff Wilpon. I was under the impression that he was going to speak with Fred. This definitely changes the dynamic.)

Monday, October 20, 2008

TALK TO ME IN OCTOBER: 3:11PM

I am still watching the show on mute. It's been great so far. I have not heard a word out of Mike's mouth all day, but i looked up at the television at 3:11 and saw highlights of the Rays beating the Red Sox and therefore made the assumption that Mike is talking about the Rays beating the Red Sox.

What's great about watching the show on mute is that you can make assumptions at what Mike is saying just by the movement of his head. It's kind of fun. You know that he is still not giving the Rays credit, you know that he is possibly talking negatively about Varitek, etc

Mike'd Up on Mute. It's a great show.

TALK TO ME IN OCTOBER

It's Mike solo again. The Jets lost, Mike is fired up. Will he talk about the Rays? Or do we have to wait till next August? I am also curious about how Mike will view the Rays next year.

Does Joba's DUI prove that he should be a reliever? What did Mike think of Sarah Palin on SNL, you know he is going to talk about this today. He has to, we need to know what he thought. We need to know.

I am currently watching Mike on YES on mute. He is moving his hands a bit, not like the whirling dervish that is Christopher Russo, but he seems quite excitable.

Also, and we have not talked about this much, Mike's hair is pretty amazing. It is always perfectly styled. Do you think he goes with the foam moose or a more nourishing gel?

First Time Long Time is still in the AZ. GMAN AND I have our fantasy basketball draft tomorrow. Please feel free to offer us sleepers. We will not share the winnings with you.

Even with Mike on mute i can tell that he has yet to talk about the Rays.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Blogging from Arizona

Mike and the Mad Blog readers. So committed to you am I, First Time, Long Time, that out on a vacation with my wife, I have slipped away to listen to Captain Train Wreck for a few...And the first comments I heard from Mike were along the lines of "we used to remember watching a team like that...we used to remember seeing a Stadium go crazy like that." Mike added that the Red Sox have now become THE franchise. I actually agree with Mike...but here's the thing...two days ago, Evan Roberts made the same point to Mike and Francesa belittled the newbie and told him very sternly that the "Red Sox are not the Yankees." Now, two days later, Mike has essentially just said that the Sox have become who the Yankees were. That's a pretty nice about-face by Francesa. I have to add that when I read that Francesa said yesterday that the Rays winning the World Series would be bad for them, I nearly jumped off a Canyon. So here's the thing (and apologies to Bud for being harsh on Mikey), but Mike, let me quote what Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead once told the audience at Cornell back in '77, "take a step back. And take another step back." Mike, you need to step back from your throne for a minute and re-evaluate the person you have become since the divorce. You need get out of Astoria and do whatever it is you do when you're not belittling callers and guest hosts. Hug Roe. Reads the kids a bedtime story. Just clear your head. You have attacked the "prime real estate" all wrong since Chris packed up his headphones and left you. You have contradicted yourself on a daily basis. Don't get me wrong, you have always contradicted yourself, but it was never this frequent. Your whole tone has been awful. Just take a step back. You once talked about Pedro Martinez losing his fastball, but being able to figure out how to pitch with other stuff. You lost the hard stuff in Russo. So now you need to figure out what else is in the repertoire because right now you look like Josh Beckett the past two starts.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

THE HORROR

Earlier this year, I wrote a post comparing Willie Randolph's impending dismissal with Capt. Willard's mission to terminate Col. Kurtz's command. Now I know that our readers are more Pulp Fiction than Apocalypse Now. More Old School than Caddyshack. More Something's Gotta Give than When Harry Met Sally. But let's be honest. John Milius took Joseph Conrad's novel and made it into a never ending referendum on life. So with that in mind, I will take you through the downward spiral of Michael Patrick Francesa. The following is a back and forth with Francesa of the last 2 months and the various players of Apocalypse Now:


FRANCESA
"Something is wrong with this team. You have to break up the core."

KURTZ
"We must kill them. We must incinerate them. Pig after pig,
cow after cow, village after village, army after army.
And they call me an assassin. What do you call it when
the assassins accuse the assassin?"


FRANCESA
"I think it will hurt the Rays if they win the World Series."

CORMAN
"Sometimes the dark side overcomes what Lincoln called
the better angels of our nature. Every man has got a
breaking point. You and I have. Walter Kurtz has reached his.
And very obviously, he has gone insane."


FRANCESA
"My source told me that Ryan Church is very unhappy in New York."

WILLARD
" They told me that you had gone totally insane and that your
methods were unsound."
KURTZ
" Are my methods unsound?"
WILLARD
" I don't see any method at all, sir."

FRANCESA
"There's a David Wright on every team."

LUCAS
"Your mission is to proceed up to Nung river in a Navy
patrol boat. Pick up colonel Kurtz' path at Nu Mung Ba,
follow it, learn what you can along the way. When you find
colonel infiltrate his team by whatever means available and
terminate the colonel's command."
WILLARD
"Terminate ? The colonel ?"
CORMAN
"He's out there operating without any decent restraint.
Totally beyond the pale of any acceptable human conduct.
And he is still in the field commanding his troops."
CIVILIAN
"Terminate with extreme prejudice."

THEY ARE TALKING POLITICS AGAIN, I MAY NOT BE BLOGGING MUCH MORE BECAUSE THIS IS GOING TO KILL ME. NO POST. PLEASE SOMEONE HELP. IS THERE A RADIO ER?

THE F'UP OF THE BREAKUP

Today, Chris Russo stated that the Phillies were an example of a team that succeeded by keeping their core together through tough times. He went through several seasons and what happened to the team and then showed how the team kept the manager and just adjusted role players till they got it right.

This is the F' UP of the Breakup... what we could have right now is Chris stating these thoughts about the Phils, Mike saying his nonsense on the Mets and then they would get into a heated arguement that would include somehow the state of the bathrooms at both Yankee Stadium, Shea Stadium and the Carnegie Deli. They would go back and it would get heated and Russo would repeat the same information over and over again and Mike would say that Reyes is not even close to Rollins and that Wright isn't even close to either Rollins, Utley or Howard. And then Russo would be shouting "THEY STUCK WITH THEIR TEAM, MIKE." And they would yell and scream and afterwards have to go and talk to Chernoff for couples therapy.

Instead we have Russo solo trying to talk to the four listeners in Nebraska and Mike just filling the seat across him with any body that is still pumping blood. And why? Egos and money. Egos and money.

WHO THE F IS FRANK ISOLA?

I know this was the question on many of your minds. Perhaps the next question was, "was Kim Jones not available?" (by the way, why does Minko not get a shot on the Mike Merry Go Round? Does he simply have no aspirations of anything higher than reciting the same information every 20 minutes? What does Minko dream about? The advent of the 40/40 flash? Or maybe the 10/10 flash? Someone find out, please.)

The answer to "who the F is Frank Isola," can be answered with two pieces of information. One simply a bio and the second a link to an article about how he became persona non grata around the Dolan Mafia known as the New York Knicks. The stuff with the Knicks is fairly insane and make Isola seem pretty cool. But while some people have a face for radio, it seems like Isola has a personality for print.

Here's the bio info
Frank Isola has been the Knicks beat writer for the News since 1996. He is also a regular analyst on NBA TV and is the co-host of the NBA Radio show "Tip Off" which can be heard daily on Sirius.

Here is the link to the article from the New York Observer title Life In Knicks Hell (i wonder what Isola would title an article about today)

http://www.observer.com/2007/life-knicks-hell?page=0%2C0

Enjoy getting to know today's co-host. I believe tomorrow we've got Sue Simmons and Mr G.

MIKE FRANCESA FINDS THE PERFECT CO-HOST... HE'S A MUTE

I THINK WE MAY HAVE HIT BOTTOM.

I tuned it at 1:11 and my first thought was:
"Who is this guy in the split screen starring at Mike?"

I kept watching at 1:13 and my second thought was:
"Who is this guy in the split screen starring at Mike and is he going to speak?"

I kept watching at 1:15 and my third thought was (after looking it up):
"Why the F is Frank Isola the co-host today and is he actually a mute?"

I continued to watch at 1:16 and my fourth thought was:
"Who the F is the Yankee that died that Mike is rambling about?"
(answer Tom Tresh which means calls from old people today)

I was still watching, somehow at 1:18 and my fifth thought was:
"Thank God, FRANK ISOLA SPEAKS! But it seems he is only allowed to interview Mike."

I was still watching at 1:19 and my sixth thought was:
"Has Mike finally found the perfect co-host. Someone who just will sit there, say nothing, maybe ask Mike a question or two, offer no opinions and be happy to be there.?"

Honestly friends of Mike and the Mad Blog, I think we are hitting bottom with Miked Up Francesa on the Fan, Mike and Whichever WFAN Personality Is Forced to Co-Host or Mike and the Random Sports Journalist SHOW... The show has no rhythm, Mike has clearly lost his footing without Dog, he has no idea how to manage this show and he worst of all HAS NOTHING TO TALK ABOUT.

Frank Isola looks like a nice guy. He was spied on by Jim Dolan's crew while covering the Knicks, so that's a plus for him. But he has the look of another unfortunate recent participant of the co-host Merry Go Round, Agreeable Eddie C. This is not good.

WHAT WILL MIKE FRANCESA TALK ABOUT FIRST?

Here are your options:

1. Phillies clinching and Joe Torre and Manny are out
2. Joe the Plumber: (i am betting a lot of money on this and by a lot of money i mean pretend Monopoly money because I got lots of hotels on Park Place)
3. Trading David Wright
4. Why there is no new show?
5. The Sirius stock price
6. Rutgers football
7. Playing clips of Mike from Montclair's podcasts and criticizing all of them
8. His favorite posts from Mike and the Mad Blog.
9. Himself
10. The insane night of love making he had

What are you going with?

(by the way, I know at times readers dislike our strong opinions about Mike but everyone needs to know that if he did a good radio show, we promise to write that as well. We actually don't want the show to suck. We spend a lot of time listening and writing about the show. It would nice for it to be entertaining. But Mike has made promises. He has not kept them. He spoke of a new show, a new partner, a new jingle, a new soft drink (green tea). None of these things have happened. And as you can tell by the calls, we are not the only one noticing.)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

And the titles goes to...

Evan Roberts. Roberts took Francesa to school today. Exposed Mike left and right with legitimate arguments and facts. Mike countered throughout the day with emotional outbursts and his usual dismissive tone. For whatever reason (likely the Delgado curtain call issue with Wright), Mike has made it his mission to get number five shipped out of New York. He tried to say he has suggested either Wright or Reyes and blamed the fans for turning this into a Wright thing when for weeks Mike has made it all about Wright with statements like "almost every team has a David Wright." But to his credit, Evan fought back all day. Sometimes his points weren't great, but for the most part, he challenged Mike and the big man yelled like a baby. Lt. Weinberg pointed out today that the cracks are showing even more so than ever before with Mike now that he is Russo-less. All of a sudden, callers are now getting bold with him. Instead of a simple handwave ending a call, Mike rants on and on trying to diminish the caller once he has stripped them of their voice. That's like throwing punches in an empty ring. Be a man Mike and at least let your opponent stick around while you throws jabs left and right. But Mike has got to be on a ratings crusade. He was slightly insane today. I thought yesterday was bad when he tried to make the subtle point that George Bush might one day be considered a great President. But today takes the cake. The cracks are indeed showing...And it's hard to call them cracks anymore...seems to me that there's a giant hole in Mike'd Up and that jingle can't come fast enough to save this ship..

MFM VS MCCARTHY

Yesterday, I compared Mike Francesa to the late Senator Joe McCarthy. Well today, our Joseph Welch showed up. There have already been good comments on what mike from Montclair said to Mike, so I won't rehash them. But Mike From Montclair came on and basically said, 'Have you no decency, sir.' I'm not saying this is the turning point which will lead to Mike's downfall. That probably happened with his screed against the critics a few weeks ago. But this is a sign that support for Mike is eroding. Mike from Montclair, who is usually a yes man who calls in to hear his voice up against Mike and Chris, threw down against the big man. It was inspired stuff. And it totally affected Mike. After the call, Mike went into condescending attack mode and disparaged Mike from Montclair as being 'frustrated'. Here's a bit of the call:

Mike from Montclair: my brother and sister are buying me a one year subscription to SIRIUS satellite for my 50th...that’s not meant as a threat Mike...

Francesa: I’m not worried about your threat Mike. And if you don’t want to call or listen anymore, that’s your prerogative. And if you have a problem with the show, that’s also your prerogative. And if you want to listen to satellite, that’s your prerogative too...Okay, maybe you can get the stock over 40 cents a share too...

And then he kept up the bitter theme when in the middle of 100 compliments of Tom Seaver as a player, threw in the 'I don't like him personally, he's um...well you know.'

I must admit this is great theater. Or great cinema. He reminds me of Eric Bogosian in the movie Talk Radio. The second half of the movie, Bogosian playing real-life shock talk host Alan Berg, descends into madness. Eventually, he is put out of his misery when he is shot in the parking lot. Of course, I don't wish that on Mike, but the symbolism of it is relevant.
And to honor Mike from Montclair, I'll borrow from another movie, MMD favorite A Few Good Men:

RUSSO
Did I ever tell you that I heard you on an internet
podcast once?

MIKE FROM MONTCLAIR
Yeah?

RUSSO
It was one of the best podcasts ever on the 1993 Mets.

MIKE FROM MONTCLAIR
Yes it was.

RUSSO
And if I were any listener and I had
a choice between you or Francesa to
listen to, I'd take you any day of the
week and twice on Sunday.
You should have seen yourself thunder away
at Mike.

MIKE FROM MONTCLAIR
Should I call in again?

RUSSO
No.

MIKE FROM MONTCLAIR
You think Jerome would've?

RUSSO
With the ratings Mike is getting? Not in a
million years. But here's the thing-and
there's really no way of getting around
this--neither Jerome nor Ira
is the man who took down Francesa.
So there's only one question what
would you do?

The White Stuff

Evan asked Mike to give him 2 trades that would be realistic for David Wright. Roberts pointed out that the Cards ain't trading Pujols for Wright and he challenged the big man to give him two realistic deals, to which Mike could not provide even one. The following exchange then ensued:

Mike: Almost every team has a David Wright

Evan: That's ridiculous.

Mike: Who do you think David Wright is?

Evan: He's a special player.

Mike: Special in what way?

Evan: The guy hits 30 homeruns, drives in 100 runs. He's a constant..

Mike: The guy looked like a deer in the headlights in the last week...the idea that he's the leader of the team went out the window. I don't he think he's the leader of anything..why does everybody take David Wright and throw him to the forefront, because he's white?

Mike..just please admit that you have a personal vendetta against Wright. You are so transparent with this stuff...

Mike's Open

"Good afternoon folks. Beautiful Wednesday afternooon. This is Mike'd Up, Francesa on the Fan. Evan Roberts joining me again today. We'll let Evan get a word in later in the hour. But folks. I told you this day was coming. Everyone laughed at me. Called the guy a cancer. Boston won't even acknowledge him. But here it is today: The Red Sox now rue the day they traded Manny. I told ya this would happen folks. You can't replace a Manny Ramirez. You can't replace what a guy like that means in a big spot. I told you that they would rue the day they traded him and the past two games, Boston has missed Manny. Jason Bay's a nice player, but he's not Manny. And that's the point folks - no one is Manny. You just can't replace that production and what that bat means to a lineup. You think David Ortiz isn't missing Manny? Go ask him. Theo couldn't get rid of him fast enough and now that decision is going to haunt them. Manny's presence means everything to a team. And now you're seeing a Red Sox team coming up tight in a big spot. I tell ya what. This is going to define Theo's legacy. Just like Belichick never won a thing without Brady, now we are going to see if the great Theo can ever win without Manny. I'll say it again - listen real closely up in Boston: The Red Sox now rue the day that they traded Manny."

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

FRANCESISM

In 1950, Senator Joseph McCarthy produced a piece of paper that he claimed contained a list of known Communists working for the US State Department. The list was never shown, but instead used as a loaded weapon to wield political power and foment anti-communist hysteria, better known as McCarthyism.

The last 6 weeks has seen Francesa use the same tactic. In the first week of his solo show, he told us about 'numerous calls from industry people interested in this show.' His boast made it sound like Bryant Gumbel and Bob Costas were jockeying for Dog's spot. So after listening to auditions from existing hosts like Chris Carlin and Joe Benigno, I'm assuming those were all internal WFAN calls.

Francesa also made a big deal about a much anticipated jingle. We're still waiting for the jingle company to come back from vacation, because nothing has materialized. And as far as naming names, Mike's done an awful job. Some days, he's Francesa on the Fan. Others it's Mike'd Up Francesa on the Fan.

Today, Mike told us about the huge number of listeners who had in one way or other expressed their desire to be Mike's host. He said there were 'literally hundreds of people' who have expressed an interest in working with Mike and marveled at 'some of the things that they have done'. McCarthy also would throw out numbers of communists working in the government, but there was never any proof.

Now we don't know exactly what Senator McCarthy's motivations were but the end result was public fear of a red menace embedded in our society. The end result of Mike's mysterious proclamations has obviously been less dramatic. But his motives are all too apparent. Francesa needs a balm for his wounded ego after botching the Mad Dog exit strategy. The knives have been out for him and the bully has retreated to his corner. So now, he's tried to pump up his self-importance by exaggerating his likability and market value. Mike, why not spend your energy for actually working to improve the show, instead of making hollow statements?

Senator McCarthy was another bully. And like most bullies they get punched in the mouth and retreat. Joseph Welch supplied his fist to McCarthy's face when he famously asked, 'Have you no sense of decency, sir?' McCarthy was censured and drank himself to death.

What will Mike's fate be? He obviously has taken a fall from grace. Not the McCarthy kind, but in the New York radio world, he is no longer king shit of fuck mountain. Hopefully he can rally for a happy ending. But right now, he hasn't shown much sense and at best has been decent.