A month after it was first reported in the Sun-Times, the Cubs officially announced Wednesday an agreement to switch their Midwest League affiliate from Peoria to the Kane County Cougars - putting a key Class A affiliate just a suburban commute from Wrigley Field.
``It is exciting to know we have a Cubs affiliate right in our backyard,'' Jason McLeod, the Cubs' top scouting and player development executive, said in a news release.
In breaking from Peoria, the Cubs end a longstanding relationship that included the development of such players as Greg Maddux and Mark Grace and the managerial debut of Ryne Sandberg.
The Cubs on Wednesday also announced they've renewed their player development contracts with Class A Boise and advanced-A Daytona.
All three new agreements are two-year deals that run through 2014.