ESPN officials were rightfully concerned earlier this week when color analyst and former Major Leaguer Aaron Boone failed to report to the broadcast booth where he was scheduled to call a game between the Texas Rangers and Toronto Blue Jays. After repeated unsuccessful attempts to contact Boone by phone, authorities went to his hotel, where he was found curled in a fetal position in the bathtub inside his suite.

Boone was said to be catatonic, except for uttering occasional murmurs that sounded like “trade me to McCarver” and “I’ll even work with Chris Berman.” After being taken to a local hospital and placed under heavy sedation, doctors called in psychiatrists, who proceeded to run a battery of psychological tests when Boone showed no signs of physical trauma.

A spokesperson for the hospital later reported “It would seem that Mr. Boone is exhibiting textbook symptoms of extreme stress associated with prolonged exposure to Rick Sutcliffe. It’s amazing that he has survived as long as he has; he certainly has a stronger constitution than most.”

When asked for comment, Sutcliffe, Boone’s broadcast partner for the past 2 seasons, slurred, “Wa-al, ah shore hope Aaron’s awright….. ah didna mean ta hurt the kid.”

The red-nosed former Cy Young-winner then inexplicably went off on one of his favorite tangents, adding, “These youngsters these days, they have everything so easy … when ah started broadcasting, these here microphones weighed 75 pounds, and we had to work on the grounds crew in our suits before we got to come up to the booth and call the games. Ah think Aaron needs to jes’ suck it up and get back on the horse that done throwed him (HICCUP).”

Sean McDonough, the notoriously smug play-by-play announcer teamed with the two retired players, was even less sympathetic.

“Obviously, Aaron brought this upon himself by hitting the walk-off home run that propelled the Yankees to the American League championship over the Red Sox in 2003. As everyone knows, I am from Boston, and all sports are better in New England.” The diminutive, bald narcissist then went back to warming up his mellifluous voice for the next game by intoning, “there is only Boston … there is only Boston … ”

Doctors continue to monitor Boone, who has slipped in and out of consciousness for the past 24 hours. “Hopefully with lots of mental therapy, Aaron will one day learn to be a productive member of society again”, said the hospital spokesperson, who wished to remain anonymous. “But make no mistake, he has a very long road ahead, and it won’t be an easy recovery.”

Edgar Allan Photoshoppe