Mike Pesca

Mike Pesca is a reporter who has covered economics, politics and the arts during his tenure at National Public Radio. He is currently NPR's Sports Correspondent.

As such he's covered the Super Bowl, the World Series, the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the NCAA basketball tournament, the World's Strongest Man competition and the World Series of Poker. He's covered both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, Presidential and Vice Presidential Debates, and the resignation of the governors of New York (prostitute), Connecticut (corruption), and New Jersey ("I am a gay American"). Mike went undercover to test New York's gourmet cupcakes, interviewed the puppet "Lamb chop" in a report on sock tariffs, and penned a song about New Jersey political corruption. 

Pesca, whose writing has appeared in Slate and the Washington Post, is the winner of the Edward R. Murrow award for best radio feature and the 1993 Emory University Softball official of the year. He lives in Manhattan with his wife Robin, sons Milo and Emmett, and their dog, Rumsfeld. Prior to working on the National Desk at NPR, Mike was a reporter on the NPR show Day to Day, a reporter-at-large for the program On the Media, and filled in as host of The Bryant Park Project, Talk of the Nation, On the Media, The Brian Lehrer Show, and The Leonard Lopate Show. His first job in radio was as an intern on New York & Co, which came to be known as The Leonard Lopate Show.

Mike Pesca appears in the following:

Commentary: Good Or Bad? Baseball's Statistics-Driven Assessments

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Theo Epstein who took the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago Cubs to the World Series, acknowledges that his statistics-driven approach to building teams might make baseball boring to watch.


Major League Baseball's Shorter Season May Have Big Effects

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Major League Baseball is back. Only this year, each team is scheduled to play 60 regular season games. The abbreviated schedule may affect the game more than any other sport.


How Sports Talk Radio Navigates The Coronavirus Pandemic

Thursday, April 30, 2020

What are sports talk radio hosts talking about now that there are no sports being played? The same thing as everyone else: Coronavirus. Turns out, it's a pretty good fit for the format.


What To Look For During The 54th Super Bowl

Sunday, February 02, 2020

Hey, did you know the Super Bowl is happening today? Of course you did. Grab some snacks — we're going to tell you what to look for in today's big game.


Opinion: Speeding Up Baseball To Save It

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Sports commentator Mike Pesca wonders whether Major League Baseball will modernize to attract a young audience, and how it will keep them for life.


Opinion: How Holzhauer Hacked 'Jeopardy!'

Wednesday, May 01, 2019

Sports commentator Mike Pesca has his say on the unstoppability of Jeopardy! champion James Holzhauer.


Take Me Out to the Ballgame

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Mike Pesca on Baseball Opening Day. 


Opinion: Now Is The Winter Of The NBA Players' Discontent

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

Sports commentator Mike Pesca opines on the high levels of discontent among the NBA's top players.


Super Bowl LIII's Culture Wars

Friday, February 01, 2019

A look at the culture wars plaguing Super Bowl 53.


Commentary: NFL Coaches Should Be Taking More Risks

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Commentator Mike Pesca, host of Slate magazine's podcast The Gist, wishes NFL coaches would stop playing it safe. He says avoiding risk is still the default for coaches.


The Future Of Jon Gruden Following Praise As Youngest Coach To Win Super Bowl

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Commentator Mike Pesca, host of Slate's daily podcast The Gist, who offers his take on the Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden.


SCOTUS To Hear Lawsuit Against Sudan On USS Cole Attack

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Supreme Court justices hear a lawsuit against the country of Sudan brought by victims of an attack against the USS Cole in 2000. The case hinges on whether the notice was sent to the correct address.


Opinion: Mike Pesca On The Quarterback As A Hero

Wednesday, August 01, 2018

Commentator Mike Pesca talks about San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garappolo and news about a date he went on.


Which City Deserves The Stanley Cup?

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Commentator Mike Pesca ponders which fan base deserves to win hockey's championship more: the Vegas Golden Knights in their first season, or the Washington Capitals, who've never won in 43 years.


Imagining the Ultimate Sports 'What-Ifs'

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Mike Pesca, host of Slate's The Gist, imagines how the world might have been different if a given player, game, or moment just went the other way.

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The Greatest What-Ifs in Sports History

Friday, May 25, 2018

A new book by Slate's Mike Pesca looks at the great hypotheticals in sports history.

The 'Off-Field Issues' Of Josh Rosen

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Sports commentator Mike Pesca opines on millennials and personality conflicts in the NFL.


Talk About Madness: How The NCAA Deals With Scandals

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

As March Madness approaches, sports commentator Mike Pesca opines on the absurdity of the way the NCAA deals with fraud and scandal.


How Instant Replay Sucks The Fun From Football

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Commentator Mike Pesca says watching football is no longer just glorious enjoyment of fantastic plays. With the NFL's frequent use of instant replay, it's become an exercise in scrutiny and doubt.


The Fallout From Benching Eli Manning

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Mike Pesca opines on the benching of Eli Manning and the subsequent firing of Giants Coach Ben McAdoo.