Word broke about an hour ago, while I was waiting on the free Kindle sample of Ed Wade's book to be delivered, that popular Astros color commentator Jim Deshaies - who had been with the Astros since 1997 - has accepted the same position with the Chicago Cubs.
And what do you know, Deshaies fans? We (as in, "Astros Fans,") may be at fault. Carrie Muskat's article on Cubs.com says:
The news of Deshaies' possible defection to Chicago created a small firestorm among dismayed fans on the Internet. A combination of Deshaies' strong interview with network and club executives, the outcry from the Houston fanbase and support from Kasper may have swung the pendulum in Deshaies' favor earlier than expected.
George Postolos wrote in an email:
We value Jim highly and did everything in our power to retain him. While we are sorry to see him go, we respect his decision. We appreciate his many years as an Astros player and broadcaster and wish him well.
JD's partner, Bill Brown, still isn't sure what he's going to do...seeing as how he and the Astros haven't talked in two months:
"I need to talk to some people about this. I need to know a whole lot more about the situation than I know now. I was afraid something like this might happen because of the way in which Astros broadcasters are handled on one-year contracts. I'm surprised this didn't happen earlier....We have not talked in two months now. I need to know what the timing is, what the direction is, the philosophies. There are a lot of blank spaces to be filled in for me."
Look, if Deshaies wanted to leave, he was going to leave. There was no incentive for him to stay. The Astros allegedly countered with "fair market value," but it was Deshaies' job to leave. We've talked about this before (both sides of the issue), but if the Astros haven't talked to Bill Brown in two months, then how hard were they were pushing to keep him. Whatever - Astros gonna Astro. I'm just personally upset that we've lost one of the few reasons to watch the Astros for the past couple of seasons.
We'll see who the Astros get to replace him before reserving final judgment, but for now, I'm not happy.