Aaron Boone: 'We Told Our Trucks to Pull Over, Get a Slurpee, Then Head to Baltimore'

Joe & Evan
July 30, 2020 - 10:01 pm
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When Aaron Boone did his weekly segment on Joe & Evan last Friday, the Yankees were in Washington D.C., thinking they were heading to Philly and then on home to New York by the next time Boone would join WFAN’s afternoon team the following Thursday.

Life, and the coronavirus had other plans, so Boone found himself making that call-in yesterday from the visiting clubhouse at Camden Yards, where the Yankees were preparing to play the second of two hastily-arranged games against the Orioles after two days off and two different potential destinations.

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“Yeah, it has been a crazy week, but we’ve tried to kind of prepare ourselves for the great unknown we know we’re in for this season, and keep our guys in the best frame of mind as possible as we navigate 2020,” Boone told Joe & Evan on Thursday. “We feel like we’re in a good spot mentally, and we’ll keep on just rolling with the punches.”

Because of the Marlins’ COVID-19 outbreak in Philly last weekend, the Yankees’ games Monday and Tuesday at Citizens Bank Park were canceled. Boone knew late Monday morning that the Yankees weren’t playing that day, but hoped the next day was still possible; when that wasn’t, it set in motion a chain of events that saw the Yankees go from thinking New York to boarding for Baltimore – and a funny story from the skipper about some of his support staff.

“Really, when it all got a little haywire and we had to make a fast adjustment, was when our equipment truck was headed back to Yankee Stadium to get a workout in for starting the home series against the Phillies,” Boone said. “When that got canceled, and the Orioles thing started to come in the picture, we told our equipment truck to pull over and get a Slurpee; we made the Orioles call, and then told them to turn around on the highway and head to Baltimore. Our guys pretty quickly came to a decision to okay the Baltimore switch, and we were on our way to Camden Yards.”

The Yankees are scheduled to play the Orioles again next week, but with the Phillies now having had their weekend series with the Blue Jays canceled due to internal COVID-19 issues (and the Marlins being shut down through at least Monday as well), everything is in flux.

Boonie sez? The Yankees are ready.

“I’m sure things will keep developing over the next couple of days, but our focus is here in Baltimore, and then getting on the train home to start a series with Boston this weekend.”

The Yankees will head home with two wins in their pocket, a 9-3 victory Wednesday and a comeback 8-5 win on Thursday, which might be remarkable given the early part of their week was basically 48 hours of quarantine-like conditions.

“We had a great setup in a nice hotel, and I think it was almost only us there, so we had all the comforts we needed as far as working out, treatments, training, food, meeting spaces, all that,” Boone said, “and for being in flux, and the anxiety that comes with the unknown, I felt like we were in a pretty comfy situation as a group, and were able to get those days pretty easily. A couple of pitchers were able to play catch in a patch of grass across the street, but from an overall baseball standpoint, it was essentially a couple days off.”

This is the first COVID-related speed bump for the Yankees this season (their own positive cases notwithstanding), but Boone knows it’s likely not going to be the last, so even though the hardest part of his job right now might be things out of his control, he’s doing his best to keep his team prepared for things they can’t prepare for, so to speak.

“I don’t want to sound like this is complaining at all, but there’s a lot going on every day – things can change just because of the nature of this virus, so you’re constantly in flux,” Boone said. “I’ve used the phrase ‘we need to stay in the athletic position,’ because you have to be able to handle a little tweak to the daily routine almost every day. But I feel like we’re really supported here, and our staff puts us in a great position to handle this.”

You can listen to Boone’s entire weekly segment below, and as always, you can check out more on-demand audio from WFAN!

Follow the WFAN afternoon team on Twitter: @EvanRobertsWFAN, @ErnieAcostaWFAN, and @JoeandEvan

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