If Aaron Boone's 2004 season is over before it's begun, this is bad news for fantasy baseball owners who already are scraping the barrel of third basemen. It's also really bad news for those who made Boone one of their keepers in an ESPN league, since the deadline was earlier the same day word of Boone's knee injury got out. Those owners are stuck with him. It's a shame, since Boone was ranked as the No. 2 third baseman in the 2003 Player Rater and was also eligible and highly ranked at second base and shortstop. In drafts we've already held and observed, Boone was being selected no worse than fourth in most -- behind Scott Rolen, Eric Chavez and Mike Lowell -- but remember, Boone's the only one among them who steals bases and can play three positions. Now where to look? We don't know what the Yankees will do, but don't panic to fill third base when better players are on the board at first and outfield. Remember that guys like Joe Crede, Eric Hinske and Sean Burroughs will likely match some of Boone's numbers.
-- Eric Karabell