Former Philadelphia eagles starting quarterback Tim Tebow’s baseball career is taking off in the New York Mets’ minor league system, but there are some who are hellbent against the idea of Tebow succeeding in America’s pastime.
MiLB reports that Tebow has been on fire for a while now. In fact, Tim reached base four times this past Friday, one of those times being the result of a double. There has even been talk of Tebow being promoted from the Columbia Fireflies, the Mets’ single-A minor league baseball affiliate, to the AA Binghamton Rumble Ponies.
Has Tim Tebow really gotten over a hump and begun his ascent to a truly talented baseball player? Maybe. And obviously, that is bound to make a lot of people, especially those who witnessed his all-too-soon fall from grace in the NFL five years ago, very happy.
Oddly, though, notes mrc News Busters in a decidedly pro-Tebow article, a large contingent is very publicly rooting against Tim’s success as a baseball player.
The article says some sports commentators argue Tim Tebow is “profiting from failure” and doesn’t even deserve the chance to play in the MLB. In other words, they think Tebow is being looked upon favorably and being given more chances than the average aspiring pro baseball player because of the huge amount of exposure he received as an NFL first-round draft pick and eventual starting quarterback.
Another argument is that Tebow, who was known in the NFL as someone who preferred laziness to practice, did not put in enough work to deserve success.
“Why would we root for Tebow to be able to just step into baseball, which he didn’t play for 10 years, and excel?” asks Fox Sports 1 reporter Colin Cowherd. “Tim Tebow didn’t work hard enough. Tebow is not willing to take the steps to be great.”
Cowherd is alluding to the idea that has been expressed online that Tebow is, in effect, taking the place of a prospect who “actually deserves to be there.” Some have gone so far as to call his foray into baseball a publicity stunt he orchestrated to keep his name in the news.
Of course, many others dispute this idea.
“If this was a publicity stunt, he’d be in the big leagues and playing DH two or three times a week. He’s at the lowest full-season class of professional baseball, which is where guys are supposed to start,” Fireflies President John Katz tells The Post and Courier in rebuttal to the anti-Tebow claims. It certainly sounds from that as if Tebow is indeed putting in his due diligence with the Fireflies.
Katz adds that Tebow is embracing the minor league experience just as any model MLB hopeful would, joking with the rest of the team on bus trips and participating in community events.
That being said, both Katz and Tebow himself acknowledge that Tim is a major draw for fans. And, although those two have not said so, that is probably the reason Tebow is getting more chances to prove himself than most players of his age (29 years) and with his statistics would. As of about a week ago, Tebow was hitting for an average of about 0.170 and had stepped up to bat 29 times. It is early in the season, and usually, even players drafted in the first 10 rounds have not gotten to step to the plate 29 times at this point.
Now that Tebow’s performance is picking up, however, that point might be moot. His average has gone up to 0.237, and he is having multi-hit games much more regularly now.
Of course, Tim Tebow’s recent baseball success could be a fluke that will fizzle once opposing pitchers “figure him out,” but only time will tell.
Are you hoping Tebow continues to improve his performance or do you feel he is receiving unfair treatment and doesn’t really have a place in professional baseball? Let us know your reasoning in the comments section below.
[Featured Image by Sean Rayford/Getty Images]