Skip to content

What the MLB lockout means for Chicago

By Sidney Madden | @sidney_madden_


White Sox and Cubs fans will be waiting longer to go to the ball game: MLB officially canceled games after it couldn’t reach an agreement with players by the league’s self-imposed deadline.

ICYMI: Players and owners have been in a monthslong lockout. Players want minor league prospect protections, new free agency guidelines, and increased share of revenue. But MLB officials want things to mostly stay the same — except for a bigger playoff season, according to Sports Illustrated

After days of negotiations with no deal reached, the first two series of the regular season are canceled. 

What does that mean for Chicago teams? The Sox won’t play its three-game home opener against the Minnesota Twins or its first away series in Kansas City. The Cubs won’t play its opening series in Cincinnati or home opener games against rival St. Louis Cardinals according to NBC Chicago

And that could just be the start: MLB officials have reportedly said they’d be willing to cancel a month of games

But the spillover from the lockout goes past the baseball field: Business owners near Sox stadium and Wrigley Field don’t know whether to wait or move forward with baseball season prep.

Turtles Bar in Bridgeport has held off on ordering extra inventory, but Old Crow Smokehouse in Wrigleyville has already hired 100 extra employees for the summer, according to ABC7

🎧 Revisit the Chi baseball of yesteryear: Listen to our convo with broadcaster Len Kasper, who has been the voice of both teams.

🎤 IS YE STILL A ‘jeen-yuhs?’

Controversy, scrutiny, and art have gone hand in hand for most of Kanye West’s polarizing music career. But there was a time before Kanye, now legally known as Ye, was a household name. 

Back in the early 2000s, he was a Chicago music producer trying to break into the rap game. This is where the Netflix documentary “jeen-yuhs: A Kanye Trilogy” begins. Directors Clarence “Coodie” Simmons and Chike Ozah intimately chronicle Ye’s slow-and-uncertain climb to fame, his relationship with his late mother Donda West, and the arc of his 20-year career. 

City Cast’s Jacoby Cochran and Chicago Tribune music writer Britt Julious discuss the nostalgia and disappointment in “jeen-yuhs” — and its subject.


▪️ Former Illinois House speaker and state Democratic chair Michael Madigan has been indicted on racketeering and bribery charges. [WBEZ]

▪️ Chicago cops overwhelmingly and disproportionately targeted and used force on Black drivers, according to the city’s top watchdog. [The Daily Line]

▪️ Feds say that COVID-19 testing company LabElite didn’t report thousands of test results. Its Norwood Park office got raided by the FBI last week. [Block Club Chicago]

▪️ The city is hosting community safety town halls and a trauma-informed symposium this month. [City of Chicago]

▪️ The deadline to run for your Local School Council has been extended to Wednesday.

▪️ It is National Adoption Week at the Anti-Cruelty Society! 🐾


City Cast Chicago won Chicago Reader’s Best Podcast of 2021! Big thanks to each and every one of you who voted for us. We’re so grateful to be telling you stories and bringing you “good news to get you through.” Check out the other winners here.


Who doesn’t love a good cooking competition show — especially when you have a Chicagoan to root for?

Damarr Brown is chef de cuisine at Virtue in Hyde Park, and he’s also one of the contestants competing for $250,000 and a Food & Wine magazine feature on the new season of “Top Chef” that premieres today. 

After studying at the now-closed Le Cordon Bleu on the Near North Side, Brown sought to work under a chef that looked like him, which is how he ended up being mentored by James Beard Award semifinalist Erick Williams, he told Block Club Chicago

The two opened the South Side restaurant serving Southern-inspired cuisine in 2018, and it was Williams who encouraged Brown to compete on the show for the experience and exposure, according to Eater Chicago.

🎧 Our friends at City Cast Houston profiled contestant Evelyn Garcia and previewed what viewers can expect on the H-Town–themed season. 

📺 Watch “Top Chef” on Bravo at 7 p.m.

Subscribe to our newsletter! Fresh in your inbox every weekday at 6 a.m.