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Obsessive Wrigley Renovation Watch: A Mayor’s Aide Says a Deal Was Close Before the Cubs Blew It

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respect wrigleyJust as my … suspicious detector went off when Dave Kaplan reported that Rosemont was suddenly offering the Ricketts Family a tract of land to move the Cubs out of Chicago, my … suspicious detector is going off today, now that the Mayor’s Office is spouting off about the Cubs very nearly blowing a deal.

According to the Sun-Times, the Mayor’s Office hasn’t been too pleased by what they perceive to be the Cubs playing hardball suddenly this week with Alderman Tom Tunney, and an anonymous source even goes so far as to suggest that the Cubs have imperiled the very deal that was going to get them what they want.

“They just accused the alderman of desecrating Wrigley Field [by suggesting removal of the Old Scoreboard], and [David] Axelrod is out there saying Tunney is in the rooftops’ pocket,” an anonymous “mayoral confidante” told the Sun-Times. “Every time we make progress, the Cubs do something stupid to set us back.


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“There has been progress. There have been concessions made. But the constant one-upsmanship in the media only undermines the trust that’s been built over the period of months. Now, we have to try to rebuild that trust. We have to reclaim territory we’ve already covered.”

Constant one-upsmanship in the media? You mean like having an anonymous “confidante” talking tough to the Sun-Times? To me, this looks to be the very thing that the Mayor’s court is accusing the Cubs of: using the media for leverage. (Note that, whenever you read about anonymous Mayoral confidantes, it’s in the Sun-Times. Whenever you read about anonymous Cubs sources, it’s in the Tribune.)

The confidante told the Sun-Times that the Mayor’s Office is willing to sign off on a deal that would permit “some signage” in Wrigley Field which would yield “some blockage” of rooftop views, and that would increase night games from 30 to around 45. Or, at least, he was willing to sign off until the Cubs totally ruined it with their evil and nefarious smear campaign against Tunney. (Please read the previous sentence as dripping with sarcasm.)

Forgive me if that is hard to believe – after months of wrangling and fighting privately, the Cubs are suddenly going to ruin all of that by going on a public campaign against Tunney, even as a deal is close? I can’t accept that. It defies logic. It’s missing the nuance and context required to really understand what’s going on behind closed doors.


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Which, unfortunately, is where we, the public, remain – standing outside those doors, subject only to the “constant one-upsmanship in the media.”

Just get the freaking thing done.


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Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor of Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation.

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