He did it.
Tim Tebow got a hit. Timothy Tebow got his first hit in the Arizona Fall League.
And don’t look now, Kevin Cron — but he’s coming for you. Because of the 73 hitters in the AFL’s batting chase, Timothy is No. 73.
Dead freaking last. Amazing to think, but he is literally the worst hitter in that league statistically.
But that could all change. Because after delivering his first base knock — a line-drive single to left field — Tebow’s hitting .063. And if he happens to get hit number 2 next at-bat, that average could jump all the way to .117… Putting him just a single percentage point behind Paul DeJong, the third worst hitter at .118. Another hit after that…? Everybody knows that if Timothy breaks into the Top 70 — Well — he’ll still be terrible.
Because the Mets 29-year-old rookie is doing exactly what we thought he’d do. The AFL’s only part time player — and its only a publicity stunt — is doing what every person who understands baseball thought he’d do: FAIL MISERABLY.
Because it’s one thing to take some instructional league rookie deep. It’s quite another to try and get by in an actual prospect-heavy fall league. And Tebow’s not doing it. Not by a long shot.
And while it pains me to actually talk about this circus, ESPN’s Keith Law, a former big-league scout who made a living analyzing prospects before flipping to the other side, might have delivered the best straight fire when he logged his report from the AFL late last week:
“Tebow the baseball player is not a baseball player; he’s a washed-up quarterback who has size and nothing else. His swing is long, and he wields the bat like someone who hasn’t played the sport in more than a decade, which he hasn’t. He can’t catch up to 90 mph, which is well below the major league average for a fastball, and was cutting through fastballs in the zone on Wednesday night… (SNIP) In short, there’s absolutely no baseball justification for Tebow to be here.
Yes there is. And can you believe it…it’s actually money. Here’s more from Law:
“The Mets’ decision to sign Tebow for $100,000 as, essentially, an undrafted 29-year-old free agent, where any other player would be lucky to get $1,000 and a plane ticket, was a craven, mercenary move befitting an independent-league team desperate for the added revenue from ticket sales, not something a major league team with postseason aspirations should be doing. The Mets had to use one of their AFL roster slots to send Tebow here, and he’s playing 3-4 days a week — because this is a part-time job for him — in place of, well, players who can actually play.”
What a match made in heaven. The Mets — a team who is still paying Bobby Bonilla over a million bucks a year every year until 2035 because they are cheap — are trying to make a few bucks off of Tebow, who is only too happy to chase another dream, this one with official merchandise, a new Adidas deal, and all the autographed bats and balls you could ever ask for.
The Mets — a team so addicted to Bernie Madoff’s funny money that they nearly went belly up when his Ponzi scheme crumbled, turned to Tebow to try and juice their bottom line.
Because this is how they’re spending their offseason after two-straight playoff appearances — chasing dreams with Timothy, not worried about resigning Yoenis Cespedes or Neil Walker or picking up the option on Jay Bruce or Jose Reyes. Not getting another prospect a shot at the Fall League, but getting some official Tebow Scottsdale Scorpions swag sold.
Match made in heaven. And not surprising at all. If the guy couldn’t make it in his chosen sport, how the hell was he going to make it in someone else’s.
Even he had to know that, right? Tebow obviously knew he had no shot at making a major league roster after not picking up a bat in ten years. And no shot even if instead of playing football in college went all in from the jump and played baseball exclusively. This isn’t about playing in the Majors. And following a dream. Unless his dream is to get everyone to look at him and somehow remain relevant, famous and getting paid.
In that sense, he’s no better than anyone else trying to get you to look at him and get paid. Because that’s what this is about. Not some dream about making it professionally in another sport. And If the guy really can’t give up the dream of being a pro athlete, he should put on the pads, start blocking, and learn a route or two, because he still has an outside shot at being an H back for someone.
Otherwise, he just needs to do what every other athlete in the history of the world has done: accept that it’s over, turn the page, and move onto the next thing.