Mike Pesca

Mike Pesca first reached the airwaves as a 10-year-old caller to a New York Jets-themed radio show and has since been able to parlay his interests in sports coverage as a National Desk correspondent  for NPR based in New York City.

Pesca enjoys training his microphone on anything that occurs at a track, arena, stadium, park, fronton, velodrome or air strip (i.e. the plane drag during the World's Strongest Man competition). He has reported from Los Angeles, Cleveland and Gary. He has also interviewed former Los Angeles Ram Cleveland Gary. Pesca is a panelist on the weekly Slate podcast “Hang up and Listen”.

In 1997, Pesca began his work in radio as a producer at WNYC. He worked on the NPR and WNYC program On The Media. Later he became the New York correspondent for NPR's midday newsmagazine Day to Day, a job that has brought him to the campaign trail, political conventions, hurricane zones and the Manolo Blahnik shoe sale. Pesca was the first NPR reporter to have his own podcast, a weekly look at gambling cleverly titled “On Gambling with Mike Pesca.”

Pesca, whose writing has appeared in Slate and The Washington Post, is the winner of two Edward R. Murrow awards for radio reporting and, in1993, was named Emory University Softball Official of the Year.

He lives in Manhattan with his wife Robin, sons Milo and Emmett and their dog Rumsfeld. A believer in full disclosure, Pesca rates his favorite teams as the Jets, Mets, St. Johns Red Storm and Knicks, teams he has covered fairly and without favor despite the fact that they have given him a combined one championship during his lifetime as a fully cognizant human.



Wed January 9, 2013

Remembering Virtuoso Sports Writer Richard Ben Cramer

Originally published on Wed January 9, 2013 6:26 am

Author Richard Ben Cramer was an award-winning writer who explored politics and sports. Herculean reporting, compelling writing and bursts of insight born of that research and wordsmanship were the hallmarks of Cramer. He died Monday at the age of 62.


Mon January 7, 2013

NHL To Host Abbreviated Season After Lockout Ends

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 6:19 pm



There will be an NHL season after all. The National Hockey League has reached a deal with its players, and play could begin within 10 days. The season will be severely shortened thanks to the lockout. Teams will probably play 48 games rather than the usual 82. As NPR's Mike Pesca reports, first, owners and players must vote to ratify the agreement, then training camps can open and cold steel can once again hit the ice.

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Fri January 4, 2013

Weak Schedule Helped Some Wild Card Teams Into NFL Playoffs

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 7:02 pm



Finally this hour, as we get ready to settle in for the NFL playoffs - that's four football games per weekend over the next two weekends - NPR's Mike Pesca is here to offer insight, analysis, and I understand a little cold water. Mike, what's your deal here?

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Tue December 4, 2012

Rookie NFL QBs Reignite Their Lagging Teams

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:50 pm

Audie Cornish talks with Mike Pesca about the success of rookie quarterbacks Robert Griffin III of the Washington Redskins and Andrew Luck of the Indianapolis Colts. On Monday night, Griffin led the Redskins in a victory over the New York Giants. Andrew Luck threw for a last second touchdown to beat the Detroit Lions on Sunday. The two were the top picks in last year's draft and both are leading their teams to substantial improvement over last season.


Wed November 28, 2012

Doping Era Could Change MLB Hall Of Fame Entrants

Originally published on Wed November 28, 2012 5:47 pm

Baseball Hall of Fame voters will come face-to-face with the doping era this year. Major figures in steroid scandals including Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, and Sammy Sosa will be on the ballot for the first time. Melissa Block talks with Mike Pesca about the slate of candidates announced on Wednesday.


Tue November 27, 2012

Marvin Miller Changed Baseball With Free Agency

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 5:55 pm

Former baseball union leader Marvin Miller has died. He revolutionized sports with free agency, which gave athletes more power and vastly increased their compensation.


Mon October 29, 2012

Giants Sweep Tigers For World Series Title

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 6:51 am



Please take a chance if you can and send condolences to NPR's Don Gonyea, one of the nation's more prominent Tigers fans. The San Francisco Giants are the World Series champions, completing a four-game sweep last night and beating the Detroit Tigers 4-3 in 10 innings. Few people expected a sweep, but then again the Giants were a surprise team this baseball season. NPR's Mike Pesca reports that the San Francisco's pitching and defense dominated this series.

MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: Baseball, it's a strange game. It's a quirky game.

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Wed October 10, 2012

Football Player-Turned-Actor Alex Karras Dies

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 6:57 pm

Alex Karras played defense for the Detroit Lions in the 1960s. He turned to acting when he retired his cleats, landing a number of character roles in television and film. He was 77.


Wed September 5, 2012

NFL Starts Regular Season Without Its Regular Refs

Originally published on Wed September 5, 2012 5:56 pm

The NFL starts its regular season tonight with replacement referees. A labor dispute has sidelined the regular refs. Some players and fans say the game is suffering.


Fri August 24, 2012

Lance Armstrong Banned For Life, Stripped Of Medals

Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 7:47 pm



To athletes young and old, Lance Armstrong has been an icon and an inspiration, even more so to cancer survivors, their families and anyone who wore a yellow LIVESTRONG bracelet. So what becomes of Armstrong's legacy now that his titles are gone and he's been labeled a doper?

Here's NPR's Mike Pesca with some reaction.

MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: The year is 2000, and the Tour de France has just reached a critical stage in Provence. Breaking away from the pack, in effect breaking the pack, is Lance Armstrong.

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