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It’s not always a good idea to start a relationship around Valentine’s Day, but the White Sox may have ended up with the one they should’ve been with all along.
I’m referring to their radio rights, of course. After being spurned by WLS-AM 890 in Cumulus Media’s bankruptcy proceedings a fortnight ago, the White Sox officially announced a new flagship deal with WGN-AM 720 this morning. The station announced a “multiyear” deal, and Ed Farmer and Darrin Jackson will remain on the call.
The reaction to Bruce Levine’s original report last week was enthusiastic, both among those in the industry and the audience for such games. Those who worked with WGN Sports said the station was a strong partner for the Sox, not just in terms of signal, but also in the way they promoted the Blackhawks. Those on the receiving end looked forward to a stronger signal and less toxic programming surrounding the games.
WGN was supposedly an interested party the last time around, but WLS landed both the White Sox and Bulls in a deal the struggling station hoped would stabilize its programming. The relationship ended up being more codependent than healthy, and WLS wriggled out of it when Cumulus Media lobbied to reject its contracts with both teams. The Bulls immediately moved to WSCR-AM 670, the White Sox’ previous home before the shift to WLS.