YES Becomes KAY As Michael Kay’s Simulcast Will Replace Mike Francesa’s
Once Francesa’s gone, how many critics of the Yankees will there be on the YES Network? How many actual reporters and not employees of the club will there be? You can go back years and see YES, its website or any of their supposed “news” people failing to report newsworthy stories that would embarrass the organization. They’ve whited out A-Rod’s scandals as much as they could. General Manager Brian Cashman’s off-field peccadillos and subsequent public humiliation were never mentioned. Even injuries such as the one to minor league pitcher Jose Campos in 2012 were ignored as if the mere discussion of the fact that the Yankees had traded a chip – Jesus Montero – for two injured pitchers in Campos and Michael Pineda was out-of-bounds for the delicate sensibilities of the fans.
Will Kay draw the ire of the Steinbrenners, Randy Levine, Lonn Trost and any of the other members of the Yankees hierarchy by criticizing the organization when it’s justified? This is the same Kay who, after Joe Torre’s departure, hammered the former manager relentlessly for his selfishness. None of the criticisms – some of which were accurate – were uttered while Torre managed the Yankees as Kay later claimed to have been "protecting" Torre as if that was his job; as if he could maintain the veneer of reporter and Yankees apologist and not have it noticed. This has gone on repeatedly. Just wait until Robinson Cano shows up as a member of the Mariners and jogs to first base as he did on a daily basis with the Yankees. Kay used to mention it almost apologetically, but now he’ll light into Cano with both barrels because Cano no longer has the “interlocking N and the Y” on his cap.
So which is it with Kay? Will he be a talk radio host discussing sports in a no holds barred manner on the ESPN simulcast, then revert back to the front man who throws lollipop questions at guests on CenterStage, is the master of ceremonies when the team is retiring someone’s number, and broadcasts the games in a tone where he might as well be wearing a Yankee uniform and waving a team pennant? Or will it be all Yankees support all the time, no matter what they do?
The front office can claim this was a financial decision, but think about it logically. Do you really believe the supremely wealthy Yankees are going to save that much money replacing Francesa with Kay? Count up the likely lost ad revenue and ratings and I’d venture to guess the savings will be negligible if there are any savings at all.