Yankees supervisor Aaron Boone takes speedy medical go away to obtain pacemaker

TAMPA, Florida – Even when he was due for surgery later that day, Aaron Boone thought of his players and the Yankees organization.

And so, late Wednesday afternoon, General Manager Brian Cashman said Boone had chosen to speak to Yankees staff and then to talk to players from his bed at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tampa, where the manager had surgery later that day for the fourth year to get a pacemaker.

“I just think it speaks [how] In his view, it’s about others first, “said Cashman.” I think the way he does business is that it’s almost about service to others. He thinks of himself last and not necessarily first. I think that’s why he’s such a good leader. “

News came earlier in the day that was shocking when the club announced that Boone would be taking “an immediate leave of absence” for the trial.

The Yankees announced at 6:00 p.m. Wednesday that Boone “had not operated on and was in the recovery room at St. Joseph’s Hospital. The procedure went as expected.”

Later that evening, the Yankees said in a statement, “As previously planned, manager Aaron Boone I will spend the night at St. Joseph’s Hospital to rest and recover. He’s in a good mood right now. “

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The leave of absence is unlikely to be long, and Boone said in a statement he expects to be back to work “in the next few days”.

“As many of you know, I had an open heart surgery in 2009, and I wanted everyone to understand where I was with regard to today’s procedure,” said Boone, 47, opening the statement released by the team early Wednesday afternoon. “For the past six to eight weeks, I’ve had mild symptoms of lightheadedness, low energy, and shortness of breath. As a result, I had a number of tests and exams, including multiple visits with a team of cardiac specialists. During the cardiac exam, prior to the New York spring training returned to normal, there was evidence of a low heart rate which, after further consultation with doctors in Tampa, requires a pacemaker. “

Cashman said Boone drew his attention to how he was feeling “a few days ago” and that this may need to be addressed with a pacemaker.

“The Yankees ‘point of view was,’ Hey whatever, take your time, go now whenever it’s best for you,” Cashman said. “Nothing is more important than your health and your family.”

Managing Partner Hal Steinbrenner said in a statement: “The thoughts of the entire organization are with Aaron and his family as he undergoes this procedure and takes the time it takes to properly heal. Aaron leads our players, coaches and associates with a rare combination. Our only priority at this time is Aaron’s health and wellbeing, and we will support him in every way possible throughout his recovery. “

Cashman said Boone’s video addresses were designed – and managed – to “pacify” everyone. Boone’s private conversation with Cashman earlier in the day did the same for the longtime GM.

“Just the way he communicated with me calmed me down,” said Cashman. “My takeaway was, if it’s in a really good place, then I’m in a good place.”

Bank coach Carlos Mendoza will stand in for Boone while he is out, which is unlikely to be long.

“This is what we would consider a routine procedure,” said Joseph Germano, DO, director of cardiac electrophysiology at NYU’s Langone Hospital-Long Island, on the phone on Wednesday. “It’s a minor surgery [and] We can of course never say that there is no risk, but it is a routine procedure and I would expect the complication rate to be very low. “

Dr. Germano, who does the surgery on a regular basis – and describes himself as a “big Yankees fan” – said Boone shouldn’t be limited to how he does his job – including arguing with umpires and the like – upon his return.

“After a pacemaker there are some mild physical limitations, like lifting heavy objects or raising your arm above your head, but essentially normal activities that you can resume almost immediately,” he said.

That was essentially Boone’s message to the team.

“It definitely did,” said Brett Gardner of Boone’s video, which offers reassurance. “Every time you hear from the heart it’s very, very worrying. Obviously he’s had some problems there, so our first thoughts (as a player) are about him and his well-being, but obviously his first thoughts are about his players and our wellbeing and making us feel comfortable with what he’s up to. It was good to see that he is comfortable and he’s confident of what he’s up to today. “

Mendoza said it was comforting to see Boone at Zoom’s daily staff meetings, even if Boone attended from the hospital.

“Everyone could see their face and it made me feel a lot better and we all felt a lot better here,” said Mendoza. “We pray for him for a speedy recovery. We pray for his family and obviously we have his back. And since he knows Boonie, he wants to make sure we all stay positive here and get on with our jobs.”

Erik Boland started in Newsday’s sports division in 2002. He covered high school and college sports and then switched to Jets Beat. He’s covered the Yankees since 2009.

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