Who's on First?

Down in Whoville

Who's on First Larry?

(BDD Photo Illustration)

From Abbott and Costello to Larry and Francona

Lucchino Introduces the 2006 Red Sox to Tito

Francona: What's the guy's name on first base?
Larry: No. What is in center.
Francona: I'm not asking you who's in center.
Larry: Who's on first.
Francona: I don't know.
Larry: He's at short, we're not talking about him.
Francona: Now how did I get to shortstop?
Larry: Why you mentioned his name.
Francona: If I mentioned the shortstop’s name, who did I say is playing short?
Larry: No. Who's playing first.
Francona: What's on first?
Larry: What's in center.
Francona: I don't know.
Larry: He's at short.
Francona: There I go, back to shortstop again!

Larry: Well Francona, you going to New York with Damon? You know George Steinbrenner, the Yankee's owner, offered me a job, but I’m too busy “retooling” the 2006 Boston Red Sox.
Francona: Look Larry, if you're the president, you must know all the 2006 team players.
Larry: I certainly do.
Francona: Well you know I've never met the guys. So you'll have to tell me their names, and then I'll know who's playing on the team.
Larryt: Oh, I'll tell you their names, but you know it seems to me they give these ball players now-a-days very peculiar names.
Francona: You mean funny names?
Larry: Strange names, pet names...like Manny Being Manny...
Francona: His brother the Diva.
Larry: Dominican Diva...
Francona: And their French cousin.
Larry: French?
Francona: Lowe.
Larry: The Down Lowe. Well, let's see, we have right now Who's on first, What's in center, I Don't Know is at short...
Francona: That's what I want to find out.
Larry: I say Who's on first, What's in center, I Don't Know's at short.
Francona: Are you the president and CEO?
Larry: Yes.
Francona: You gonna be the GM too?
Larry: Yes.
Francona: And you don't know the fellows' names?
Larry: Well I should.
Francona: Well then who's on first?
Larry: Yes.
Francona: I mean the fellow's name.
Larry: Who.
Francona: The guy on first.
Larry: Who.
Francona: The first baseman.
Larry: Who.
Francona: The guy playing...
Larry: Who is on first!
Francona: I'm asking YOU who's on first.
Larry: That's the man's name.
Francona: That's who's name?
Larry: Yes.
Francona: Well go ahead and tell me.
Larry: That's it.
Francona: That's who?
Larry: Yes.

PAUSE

Francona: Look, you gotta first baseman?
Larry: Certainly.
Francona: Who's playing first?
Larry: That's right.
Francona: When you pay off the first baseman every month, who gets the money?
Larry: Every dollar of it.
Francona: All I'm trying to find out is the fellow's name on first base.
Larry: Who.
Francona: The guy that gets...
Larry: That's it.
Francona: Who gets the money...
Larry: He does, every dollar. Sometimes his wife comes down and collects it.
Francona: Whose wife?
Larry: Yes.

PAUSE

Larry: What's wrong with that?
Francona: Look, all I wanna know is when you sign up the first baseman, how does he sign his name?
Larry: Who.
Francona: The guy.
Larry: Who.
Francona: How does he sign...
Larry: That's how he signs it.
Francona: Who?
Larry: Yes.

PAUSE

Francona: All I'm trying to find out is what's the guy's name on first base.
Larry: No. What is in center field.
Francona: I'm not asking you who's in center.
Larry: Who's on first.
Francona: One guy at a time!
Larry: Well, don't change the players around.
Francona: I'm not changing nobody!
Larry: Take it easy, buddy.
Francona: I'm only asking you, who's the guy on first base?
Larry: That's right.
Francona: OK.
Larry: All right.

PAUSE

Francona: What's the guy's name on first base?
Larry: No. What is in center.
Francona: I'm not asking you who's in center.
Larry: Who's on first.
Francona: I don't know.
Larry: He's at short, we're not talking about him.
Francona: Now how did I get to shortstop?
Larry: Why you mentioned his name.
Francona: If I mentioned the shortstop’s name, who did I say is playing short?
Larry: No. Who's playing first.
Francona: What's on first?
Larry: What's in center.
Francona: I don't know.
Larry: He's at short.
Francona: There I go, back to shortstop again!

PAUSE

Francona: Would you just stay at second and don't go to short.
Larry: All right, what do you want to know?
Francona: Now who's playing shortstop?
Larry: Why do you insist on putting Who at short stop?
Francona: What am I putting at short.
Larry: No. What is in center.
Francona: You don't want who in center?
Larry: Who is on first.
Francona: I don't know.
Larry & Francona Together: Shortstop!

PAUSE

Francona: Look, you gotta outfield?
Larry: Sure.
Francona: The left fielder's name?
Larry: Why.
Francona: I just thought I'd ask you.
Larry: Well, I just thought I'd tell ya.
Francona: Then tell me who's playing left field.
Larry: Who's playing first.
Francona: I'm not... stay out of the infield! I want to know what's the guy's name in left field?
Larry: No, What is in center.
Francona: I'm not asking you who's in center.
Larry: Who's on first!
Francona: I don't know.
Larry & Francona Together: Shortstop!

PAUSE

Francona: The left fielder's name?
Larry: Why.
Francona: Because!
Larry: Oh, he's the lefthanded relief specialist.

PAUSE

Francona: Look, You gotta No. 1 pitcher on this team?
Larry: Sure.
Francona: The pitcher's name?
Larry: Tomorrow.
Francona: You don't want to tell me today?
Larry: I'm telling you now.
Francona: Then go ahead.
Larry: Tomorrow!
Francona: What time?
Larry: What time what?
Francona: What time tomorrow are you gonna tell me who's pitching?
Larry: Now listen. Who is not pitching.
Francona: I'll break your arm, you say who's on first! I want to know what's the pitcher's name?
Larry: What's in center.
Francona: I don't know.
Larry & Francona Together: Shortstop!

PAUSE

Francona: Gotta a catcher?
Larry: Certainly.
Francona: The catcher's name?
Larry: Varitek.
Francona: Varitek, and tomorrow's pitcher.
Larry: Now you've got it.
Francona: All we got is a couple of days on the team.

PAUSE

Francona: You know I'm a catcher too.
Larry: So they tell me.
Francona: I get behind the plate to do some fancy catching, Tomorrow's pitching on my team and a heavy hitter gets up. Now the heavy hitter bunts the ball. When he bunts the ball, me, being a good catcher, I'm gonna throw the guy out at first base. So I pick up the ball and throw it to who?
Larry: Now that's the first thing you've said right.
Francona: I don't even know what I'm talking about!

PAUSE

Larry: That's all you have to do.
Francona: Is to throw the ball to first base.
Larry: Yes!
Francona: Now who's got it?
Larry: Naturally.

PAUSE

Francona: Look, if I throw the ball to first base, somebody's gotta get it. Now who has it?
Larry: Naturally.
Francona: Who?
Larry: Naturally.
Francona: Naturally?
Larry: Naturally.
Francona: So I pick up the ball and I throw it to Naturally.
Larry: No you don't, you throw the ball to Who.
Francona: Naturally.
Larry: That's different.
Francona: That's what I said.
Larry: You're not saying it...
Francona: I throw the ball to Naturally.
Larry: You throw it to Who.
Francona: Naturally.
Larry: That's it.
Francona: That's what I said!
Larry: You ask me.
Francona: I throw the ball to who?
Larry: Naturally.
Francona: Now you ask me.
Larry: You throw the ball to Who?
Francona: Naturally.
Larry: That's it.
Francona: Same as you! Same as YOU! I throw the ball to who. Whoever it is drops the ball and the guy runs to second. Who picks up the ball and throws it to What. What throws it in to I Don't Know. I Don't Know throws it back to Tomorrow, Triple play. Another guy gets up and hits a long fly ball to Because. Why? I don't know! He's at short and I don't give a darn!
Larry: What?
Francona: I said I don't give a darn!
Larry: Oh, that's our closer.

(Written from the original "Who's on first" transcript at Baseball Almanac)

BDD is a feature of Boston.com. The site is not produced by the Boston Globe sports dept.

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