Facing heart surgery, Boone out for 2009

Since cementing his place in Yankee lore with a dramatic home run in the 11th inning of Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS, Aaron Boone hasn’t had much of a baseball career. After tearing his knee in a pick-up basketball game that would alter the course of Yankee history, Boone has played just 420 games over five years and has been a non-entity in baseball.

In that time, he has played for the Indians, Marlins and Nationals. He’s hit just .250/.317/.383 with 34 home runs and 162 RBIs in 1286 ABs. It’s almost as though he made a deal with the baseball devil. For hitting that home run off of Tim Wakefield, Boone would never again be the solid, if unspectacular, Major Leaguer he was before arriving in the Bronx. Only recently, in fact, did he learn to embrace that career-defining moment.

Today, Boone announced that he will miss the entire 2009 season as he faces surgery for a faulty heart valve. Whether Boone will attempt a comeback in 2010 as he nears age 37 is unknown. Right now, he, as he should be, is focused on his current health scare.

Hopefully, he’ll be okay. His home run was an era-defining and era-ending moment for millions of young Yankee fans, and we’re all rooting for Boone to pull through.