this will alienate the boomers that make up the classic rock audience. That even if they have a good product on MAL, it will not keep any of the current Edge audience, and won't grow what they already had on AM.
Talk and Sports are moving to FM all over the place because radio needs to get its unique content into the ears of the younger demos that tune out interference-plagued AM. Anyone can plug 300 songs into a file player and recreate 90% of The "Edge". It sounds like Citadel was trying to nuture a morning show and some personalities along with the stale format, but that alone doesn't always cut it, and Edge's ratings were slim indeed. As mentioned, WBIG or WWDC can easily pick up the slack by throwing in a few harder Classic Rock tunes, if they want to.
Even though WMAL in its current form isn't in great shape, it's as good as it's going to get until programmers figure out a way to lower the demos, perhaps through younger hosts and/or less political content. Attempts to date (Free FM, generic lifestyle talk, and the current "News FM" messes in NYC and Chicago - albeit early in their lifespans) aren't promising. Generic music - especially rock - is on the way out, because just about anyone but the lowest of the lowest common denominator prefers their own music mix to 300 generic consultant-selected burnouts. Add to that Washington's tradition of tuning to FM due to generally lousy AM signals (witness WTOP's ascendancy to the top after the move to 103.5), and moving MAL makes sense.
WMAL's programming on 105.9 is a good start. The morning show can be tweaked and other programming can be gradually improved as it becomes apparent what works. But 105.9 can be branded as unique content starting right now.