Tim Tebow may be making his return to the New York sports scene… if he can make it out of the minors, that is.
The former Florida Heisman winner and NFL quarterback officially signed with a Major League Baseball franchise this morning: the New York Mets.
On Wednesday, it was reported that eight teams had interest in Tebow. The team announced the signing officially this morning.
— New York Mets (@Mets) September 8, 2016
Tebow’s professional baseball career will begin in Port St. Lucie, Florida with the Mets’ Instructional League team this fall, which probably means that you’ll see less of the Florida Gators legend on SEC Network this season.
The Mets' fall instructional league runs from Sept. 18 through Oct. 8 in Port St. Lucie. The Mets say Tim Tebow… https://t.co/9genXDga0L
— Adam Rubin (@AdamRubinESPN) September 8, 2016
From there, it is anyone’s guess how quickly he makes his way through the club ranks. He could also make an appearance in the Arizona League following the Instructional League season, though the Mets have not shared their plans for Tebow’s progression yet.
One of the main criticisms of Tebow’s baseball ambitions is that it takes away from the lifelong baseball prospects in whichever system would sign him. According to CBS Sports’ Matt Snyder, that is not a legitimate concern with Tebow heading to the Instructional League:
As for the notion that Tebow might somehow be “taking someone else’s spot,” he’s not. Spots in instructionals aren’t limited and most of the game action isn’t even limited to regular game-type situations. The at-bats aren’t really limited, nor is the time spent on any given individual.
Basically, there’s no real risk from a baseball standpoint for the Mets here. They are simply seeing what they can get out of a 29-year-old athlete who has flashed some upside despite being very raw.
With Tim Tebow heading to play in Florida, however, it seems inevitable that he’ll draw a ton of media attention. Expect plenty of Gators fans to make the trip to see the Florida icon try and make the impossible happen. Again.