ESPN may be the main subject in many an unenviable headline these days but, damn, they sure have perfected this analyst to coaching pipeline.
Just a day after it was announced that Herm Edwards was next up to be the head coach of Arizona State's football team, we have learned that Aaron Boone will be leaving The Worldwide Leader to go manage the most storied franchise in all of sports (probably), the New York Yankees.
The 44-year-old Boone has no prior managerial or coaching experience, and had been serving as a baseball analyst and color commentator on ESPN since 2010, the year after he retired. To replace Joe Girardi as the Yankees' head man in the dugout, Boone had to beat out five other serious candidates, including ex-MLB manager Eric Wedge, and recently retired (and probable future Hall of Famer) Carlos Beltran.
Boone gained the credibility to work at ESPN by virtue of having a 13-year Major League career that included stints with the Reds, Yankees, Indians, Marlins, Nationals and Astros. His time with the Yankees was brief, as he was acquired at the trade deadline in 2003, but it was memorable due to this one freakin' 11th inning walk-off home-run he hit in Game 7 of that year's ALCS to win the pennant over the Red Sox:
In the offseason following that iconic bomb, Boone tore a knee ligament while playing pickup basketball in violation of his contract, and he was subsequently replaced on the Yanks' roster by Alex Rodriguez.
Anyway, the hire ends a search for the job that lasted over a month. As for Boone, he should inherit a very, very talented roster (with more prospects on the way, by the way) that came within one win of advancing to the World Series before being bounced by the eventual champion Houston Astros.
He should enjoy the honeymoon period while he can.