Aaron Boone’s Season Over

October 16, 2003.

It’s a day that introduced Aaron Boone to most of the baseball world.  Boone, a third baseman who could also play around the infield, was an invaluable part of the Cincinnati Reds organization in the late 1990s.  However, after his first and only All-Star Game selection in 2003, the Reds traded him to the Yankees for Charlie Manning, Brandon Claussen, and cash.

Over three seasons in Cincinnati, Claussen would go 15-27 with a 5.11 ERA, a 1.52 WHIP, and 223 K to just 120 BB.  Manning would never suit up for the Reds.  After half a season at Class-AA Chattanooga, he was dealt back to the Yankees for Gabe White.

Boone, on the other hand, went .254/.302/.418 in the second half for the Yankees, then topped it off by hitting the game-winning home run in Game Seven of the ALCS against the Red Sox.

Aaron Boone walkoff.jpgHe would spend the rest of his career in Cleveland, Florida, Washington, and Houston battling various injuries and ailments, and this morning came the worst news of all: Aaron Boone’s season will end while he undergoes open heart surgery.

Growing up in Southwestern Ohio, the Boones – Aaron, Bob, and Bret – were like royalty to me.  I knew Ray only by reputation, but these three were all part of the Reds organization during and shortly after my high school years.  They were forces in the community – it often seemed like you couldn’t go to a charity event in southwestern Ohio and not run into a Boone.

Aaron’s wife, former playmate Laura Cover, was born in the same hospital as me, just a few weeks after I was.

My heart goes out to the Boones.  This is terrible news for the Houston Astros’ family, including all of the Boones.  He never played a game for us, but we will embrace him the way we do all of our players.  It’s unclear whether or not he’ll ever play competitive baseball again.

Between him and Max Sapp, our former first-round pick who was hospitalized with viral meningitis in December 2008 and has battled ever since, this has largely been an offseason to forget for the Astros.  But if anyone knows anything about late-game heroics, it’s Boone.  The kid doesn’t know the definition of the word “quit.”

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11 comments

  1. roundrock15

    Last night, owner Drayton McLane announced a press conference. He confirmed that it was not about Pudge, and that it had nothing to do with selling the team, hiring anyone, firing anyone, signing or releasing any players. There was a lot of hand-wringing, wondering what it could be. When the news hit, it hit hard. Very sad day, and all I can do is hope he makes it through okay and that his family can stay strong.http://houston.mlblogs.com

  2. astrosfaninexile

    Takes scary real life stuff like this, and poor Max Sapp’s health problems, to put it all in perspective. Hopefully they’ll both have complete recoveries.

    I’m here in Kissimmee now and can finally see some baseball first hand. Posted a few photos and game notes on my blog and website. Sat behind home plate – great view of the Astros losing to the Yankees – but the black safety netting makes it annoying to take pix. I will be sitting in my “usual” place in or around Section 103 for the rest of my weeklong stay and expect to have a gazillion photos.

    You’ve gotta come to Spring Training next year, Round Rock. I know you don’t need to leave Sunny CA to get sunny weather, but baseball… BASEBALL!!

  3. astrosfaninexile

    Is it evil of me to not really mind if Team USA loses, so Roy O will come back to Kissimmee? I guess it is…

  4. roundrock15

    Santa Monica Mountains, actually. Will Rogers State Park, place called Rustic Canyon.And I don’t think USA winning or losing really changes Roy’s ETA in Kissimmee, except maybe by a day. The semi-finals are Saturday and Sunday, the finals are Monday. Meh, might as well root on the US. 🙂

    http://houston.mlblogs.com

  5. royschick

    Even though this would have been his first year as an Astro, it was great to see the team show him support during the press conference. I wish him and his family the best.

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