BOISE -- There are a lot of nervous Boise Hawks baseball fans right now after the Chicago Cubs dropped Boise as an affiliate Thursday night.
But, what does it all mean?
And, why was the agreement between the Cubs and Hawks ended?
The answer is an issue we've been hearing about for years.
The Boise Hawks are going to have find a new major league club to affiliate with after the Chicago Cubs ended their partnership with the Hawks Thursday night. But, while it might be sad to see the 14-year relationship end, Hawks President and General Manager Todd Rahr stressed that it doesn't mean the Hawks are folding or moving.
"The fans tend to think the Chicago Cubs own us, which they don't," said Rahr. "It's a group of investors that own this stadium, the property, the assets that are the Boise Hawks. And, it's just a vendor contract with a Major League team."
Rahr says the Hawks have until September 30th to hammer out an affiliation with another major league club. If they can't do that, MLB will assign them another team.
"The Boise Hawks are moving nowhere. We are here in Boise," said Rahr. "Any affiliation that changes has nothing to do with our status of being residents of this community."
But, why did this happen? And, might it happen again soon? Possibly, because while Rahr couldn't talk about why the Cubs ended things, he did talk to us back in 2012 about the Hawks' facilities.
And apparently, the Cubs were not happy with Boise's 27-year-old Memorial Stadium.
Chicago wanted better training facilities for their up-and-coming talent, and there were no real developments in Boise building a new stadium or renovating this one. So, while the Hawks will be attached to another Major League Club in a few weeks, this problem of an outdated stadium is not going away.
"We feel it's not just the Cubs that want a better facility, it's going to be any Major League team that comes in here that is going to want a better facility," said Rahr in a 2012 interview with KTVB.
And in order to do that, the Hawks need help from local government and millions in private funding. But for the past decade, there's only been talk about that, with no action.
A group of folks from the City of Boise, Greater Boise Auditorium District and CCDC are spurring projects that are going to help Boise's economy, like City Center Plaza.
Now that ground has been broken on that, they're looking at other future projects, like a multi-use stadium that could be the home of the Boise Hawks.
We might see some developments by early next year. But we might not.