(CBS) In former Cubs broadcaster Bob Brenly’s words, his negotiations with the Cubs on a new deal this offseason just sort of fell apart.
As Brenly explains, he had a deal in place with the Tribune Company, who owns WGN, for five years. When it came time to sign the paperwork, the Tribune Company unexpectedly reduced the deal to two years.
“The negotiations were going along swimmingly under the circumstances,” Brenly said. “We felt like we were all on the same page. We agreed to agree on a new extension of five years. But when the memo came for me to sign that we agreed to agree, it was only two years guaranteed, which I can certainly understand. WGN only has the rights for two more years for the Chicago Cubs. … They could not guarantee any money after two years.”
As the story goes, Brenly decided to look elsewhere for employment and later signed a five-year contract with Diamondbacks. The Cubs then hired Jim DeShaies as their new TV color analyst.
So does Brenly hold any negative feelings toward the Cubs’ organization as a whole?
“I might have ill feelings if I felt someone was intentionally trying to deceive me,” Brenly said. “I think it was a matter of a little disorganization in the Tribune Company not knowing exactly who was supposed to do what. Things just kind of got away a little bit. The person I was dealing with directly with WGN quit to take another job there in Chicago, so things just kind of fell apart a little bit, but I don’t blame anybody specifically for it.”
Looking back on his eight years in Chicago, Brenly has only positive memories of his time spent with the Cubs.
“How can you not miss Chicago? I’ve said it repeatedly since making the career change to come back down here to the desert. I can’t imagine a better eight years than I have spent the last eight with my partner Len Kasper and all the great people from the Cubs organization,” Brenly said. “Getting to go to Wrigley Field 81 times a year and summer in Chicago – it’s all good. I have no bad memories about my time there in Chicago. Nothing but a great experience. As you get accustomed to in the game of baseball, nothing is permanent.”