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Thursday, June 28, 2018

Tim Tebow suddenly looking like a pro baseball player

“Just ask opposing Double-A managers who raved about the strides the former Heisman Trophy winner has made this year with the Mets’ affiliate in Binghamton. They have cited his improved plate discipline, pitch recognition and opposite-field power.”

He has a slash line of .256/.335/.402 in Double-A, and he is only 31!

Hank Gillette Posted: June 28, 2018 at 02:19 AM | 60 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: fantasy baseball, tim tebow

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   1. The Honorable Ardo Posted: June 28, 2018 at 09:46 AM (#5701362)
Give the man credit! It's a lot better than MJ's slash line of .202/.289/.266 in Double-A, also in his age-31 season.
   2. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 28, 2018 at 09:52 AM (#5701368)
And at least Tebow never minded passing the ball!
   3. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: June 28, 2018 at 10:09 AM (#5701386)
Is Tebow actually blocking any decent prospects from playing time in Double-A?

I've seen a lot of Double-A baseball: most teams have plenty of no-hopers on the roster. Tebow is filling a roster spot that would typically belong to a 31-year-old lifer who has been in and out of Double-A for ten years. I'd rather see that lifer get to hang on a while longer than Tebow get to be a circus sideshow act. But Tebow can, surprisingly enough, play competently at the Double-A level, and there's no denying a lot of local fans like having him on the team, and I have no doubt he is a very positive influence on the younger guys on the team. It's annoying that the Mets are inevitably going to punt somebody off the 40-man so Tebow can spend September in the majors, but he's been far from useless on the Double-A team.
   4. Rally Posted: June 28, 2018 at 10:42 AM (#5701426)
Is Tebow actually blocking any decent prospects from playing time in Double-A?


I don't think any AA team in history has had 25 legit prospects on it. If he didn't have the back story, his stat line would be unremarkable. He's limited to corner outfield and with the age he's not a prospect. His hitting is nothing outstanding. But his OPS is better than the Eastern League average, so he clearly is good enough to be playing where he is playing.

That in itself is surprising and exceeds expectations.
   5. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: June 28, 2018 at 10:45 AM (#5701429)
Tebow has always looked like a pro, the problem has been his performance.
   6. filihok Posted: June 28, 2018 at 10:45 AM (#5701430)
with the age he's not a prospect.

I think his development age might be slightly different than his chronological age.
   7. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 28, 2018 at 12:10 PM (#5701503)
And over his previous 18 games he batted .321 (17-for-53) with an impressive .848 OPS. He hit safely in 11 of his previous 15 games, and had a stellar 315/.362/.481 slash line this month.

That's something, impressive in its own way, although a long way from suggesting Tebow is headed to MLB. The article quotes various baseball types saying they can see notable improvement, but they also seem to stop short of predicting a MLB future. Improving enough to possibly start next season at AAA would be a significant accomplishment, but at that level you'd have to take a closer look at whether he'd be taking playing time from better prospects.
   8. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: June 28, 2018 at 12:12 PM (#5701506)
This may be a cheap publicity stunt by the Mets, but I've still gotta admire the way Tebow's stuck with it.
   9. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: June 28, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5701513)
This may be a cheap publicity stunt by the Mets, but I've still gotta admire the way Tebow's stuck with it.


I make fun of him a lot but I love everything about the guy other than the rah rah God stuff. If you're a fan of human excellence expressed through dedication and performance in athletics he's hard to beat. Dude could have packed it in so many ways from the end of his NFL career to now but he just loves to compete, be around his team mates, and strive to make himself better. Kudos to him.
   10. dlf Posted: June 28, 2018 at 12:34 PM (#5701535)
I make fun of him a lot but I love everything about the guy other than the rah rah God stuff.


The thing about Tebow I disliked isn't the "rah rah God stuff" but instead his decision to split time between the ESPN booth and the Arizona Fall League. The "way Tebow's stuck with it" includes significant distractions that keep him from maximizing what ever baseball talent he has.

I'm more interested in the story of Grant Desme, the former top prospect who walked away to join the seminary and is now quietly playing independent ball after deciding that a lifetime of celibacy wasn't for him. Link.
   11. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: June 28, 2018 at 12:41 PM (#5701540)
The thing about Tebow I disliked isn't the "rah rah God stuff" but instead his decision to split time between the ESPN booth and the Arizona Fall League. The "way Tebow's stuck with it" includes significant distractions that keep him from maximizing what ever baseball talent he has.


That's a pretty petty grievance considering all that has transpired since then.
   12. dlf Posted: June 28, 2018 at 12:46 PM (#5701548)
Just to make sure I understand, it's "pretty petty" to "dislike" (not hate, despise, loathe, detest ...) someone taking up an AFL spot from another prospect and yet only appearing for a fraction of each week, but at the same time it's ok to call out his publicly professed faith? OK.
   13. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: June 28, 2018 at 12:56 PM (#5701567)
Just to make sure I understand, it's "pretty petty" to "dislike" (not hate, despise, loathe, detest ...) someone taking up an AFL spot from another prospect and yet only appearing for a fraction of each week, but at the same time it's ok to call out his publicly professed faith? OK.


I think I can laugh at people that think God decided they should throw a TD pass and win the game. Yes. I can call out the massive stupidity and arrogance needed to think that God (should he/she exist) is personally directing your exploits on the playing field. And yea, I smirk when Yoan Moncada points to the sky after a HR as well. Yoan, can you ask God to raise your batting average a bit, or maybe for the umps to give you more benefits of the doubt with two strikes?

But besides all that it was pretty well covered at the time (iirc the thread here) that no, Tebow was not "blocking" any real prospect either in the AFL or in the Mets' system.
   14. bunyon Posted: June 28, 2018 at 01:03 PM (#5701579)
Tebow is amazing. I mean that sincerely. Seems to be a really good guy, all around, and to be as good as he is at baseball with his history is awesome.

If I'm the Mets and he keeps it up until September, I call him up and give him some playing time. Assuming that goes as you'd expect, I wouldn't bring him back but he'd be a big leaguer and they'd sell some tickets. Does he deserve it? Not more than many other guys who've played at a similar level. But, then, deserves got nothing to do with it.
   15. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: June 28, 2018 at 03:51 PM (#5701734)
He does look like a fungible AA player, which is impressive.
   16. PreservedFish Posted: June 28, 2018 at 03:54 PM (#5701743)
Just to make sure I understand, it's "pretty petty" to "dislike" (not hate, despise, loathe, detest ...) someone taking up an AFL spot from another prospect and yet only appearing for a fraction of each week


It's the Mets. Nobody was going to make better use of it.
   17. Adam Starblind Posted: June 28, 2018 at 04:59 PM (#5701807)
I'd rather see that lifer get to hang on a while longer than Tebow get to be a circus sideshow act.


Why? Tebow washed out of football. He's also "hanging on." It's not like Michael Jordan's vanity project with the White Sox.
   18. Adam Starblind Posted: June 28, 2018 at 05:00 PM (#5701811)
The article quotes various baseball types saying they can see notable improvement, but they also seem to stop short of predicting a MLB future.


The way things are going with the Mets, he may well get the Mike Glavine cup of coffee.
   19. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: June 28, 2018 at 10:51 PM (#5702009)

Why? Tebow washed out of football. He's also "hanging on." It's not like Michael Jordan's vanity project with the White Sox.


It's not analogous because Tim Tebow will be able to earn a high class living for the rest of his life just doing motivational speaking and TV stuff, whether he chooses to start that today or in ten years. Whereas J. Random 31-year-old Double-A Player is staring down a lower-middle class life in the workforce with a late start (he may well stay in baseball as a scout or minor league coach, but those jobs pay #### wages).
   20. Endless Trash Posted: June 28, 2018 at 11:10 PM (#5702017)
After four years I still do not comprehend the fascination with this individual.
   21. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: June 28, 2018 at 11:57 PM (#5702031)
I do think that his performance at AA is good evidence that he could have been a MLB regular if he had pursued baseball rather than football. That's impressive.
   22. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: June 29, 2018 at 07:33 AM (#5702053)
After four years I still do not comprehend the fascination with this individual.


It’s because he’s the real deal—he actually is exactly what he looks like on TV. Everywhere he’s gone most of his teammates and coaches have greatly respected him, he has unparalelled work ethic and is one of those rare people who just genuinely cares about everyone he meets. And there are purported Super Christians everywhere in sports who are really deplorable people away from the cameras (see Josh Hamilton, or for a really extreme example the basketball coach/TV analyst Mark Jackson) or who alienate everyone with insufferable evangelizing. Tim Tebow is different; Deadspin’s been trying to catch him out for over a decade with no success yet.

So the less cynical half of us pay attention to him because we admire him, and the more cynical half because we’re waiting for the inevitable proof that he’s just as fake as everyone else after all.
   23. PreservedFish Posted: June 29, 2018 at 08:01 AM (#5702054)
It's not analogous because Tim Tebow will be able to earn a high class living for the rest of his life just doing motivational speaking and TV stuff, whether he chooses to start that today or in ten years. Whereas J. Random 31-year-old Double-A Player is staring down a lower-middle class life in the workforce with a late start (he may well stay in baseball as a scout or minor league coach, but those jobs pay #### wages).


J. Random probably should think about going back to school, or pursuing a trade, and god knows what havoc the itinerant lifestyle has wreaked on his family life. Good for Tebow to help put an end to Random's quixotic and frankly self-damaging pursuit of major league baseball.
   24. bunyon Posted: June 29, 2018 at 08:17 AM (#5702058)
I do think that his performance at AA is good evidence that he could have been a MLB regular if he had pursued baseball rather than football. That's impressive.

Exactly. I don't think there is any doubt about this.

They send his career summary to every 13-18 year old in the world who plays both baseball and football.
   25. Rally Posted: June 29, 2018 at 09:04 AM (#5702068)
I do think that his performance at AA is good evidence that he could have been a MLB regular if he had pursued baseball rather than football. That's impressive.


Maybe, but I doubt that outcome is even likely. If he were good enough to be a MLB regular then at some point he would have been a dominant player in the upper minors. Maybe he could have been had he focused on baseball from the start, but maybe he would be a big, athletic, AAA slugger who gets a few cups of coffee in the big leagues. Someone like Jabari Blash.
   26. BDC Posted: June 29, 2018 at 09:29 AM (#5702082)
I tend to agree with Rally. Tebow is batting .261 with modest power and kind of weak plate discipline, in AA, at the age of 30. For comparison, Jake Smolinski, a former Ranger for a while, is batting .278 with pretty good power and plate discipline this year, in AAA, at the age of 29. Smolinski's line as a major-leaguer, in about a season's worth (673 PAs) of play, is .235/.299/.363, 16 HR, 67 RBI. He's never been much more than a spare outfielder in the majors, and at that for bad clubs.

Now, I realize that everything about the claim "could have been a MLB regular" is premised on an earlier start leading to a quantum improvement in Tebow's baseball abilities, but it would have to be a quantum improvement. So I wouldn't be all that certain about his original baseball potential.

That said, batting .261 in AA at any age and with any background is a really high level to reach in professional baseball. Well done.

   27. bunyon Posted: June 29, 2018 at 09:37 AM (#5702086)
"Age 30" doesn't matter if one of them has played pro ball for 10 years and the other for two.
   28. Greg K Posted: June 29, 2018 at 09:46 AM (#5702092)
I'm more interested in the story of Grant Desme, the former top prospect who walked away to join the seminary and is now quietly playing independent ball after deciding that a lifetime of celibacy wasn't for him. Link.

Sounds like a guy who could use some lessons in sticking with it!
   29. villageidiom Posted: June 29, 2018 at 09:54 AM (#5702097)
And at least Tebow never minded passing the ball!
So did Jordan! Whenever he had the opportunity to pass the ball, he said "never mind".

(None of this is true about Jordan. I was just trying to make a Kobe joke fit the setup.)
   30. Rally Posted: June 29, 2018 at 09:58 AM (#5702099)
That said, batting .261 in AA at any age and with any background is a really high level to reach in professional baseball. Well done.


Fully agree. Tebow belongs, and that is impressive in itself.
   31. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: June 29, 2018 at 11:05 AM (#5702146)

He has a slash line of .256/.335/.402 in Double-A, and he is only 31!

Hey, he's only 30!


"Age 30" doesn't matter if one of them has played pro ball for 10 years and the other for two.

And this.


Anyway, I don't know what the park factors have to say about this, but raising your OPS 80 points while moving up from A to AA is an impressive improvement, and is justification enough to continue to give him a shot. Maybe he tops out here, maybe he continues to improve and plays a few productive years in the majors in his early-mid-30s. What's the downside?
   32. homerwannabee Posted: June 29, 2018 at 03:38 PM (#5702315)
One thing I've noticed is his numbers are steadily improving and the competition is getting tougher.
I don't think he's reached his potential. Especially when it comes to home run power.
I feel he deserves a call up in September, and a chance at AAA to see what he's got at the next level.
   33. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 29, 2018 at 04:36 PM (#5702340)
I feel he deserves a call up in September, and a chance at AAA to see what he's got at the next level.

I would think Tebow would have to do a lot more, and the Mets have a flurry of outfield injuries, to warrant a MLB call-up this season. That would cost the Mets a spot on the 40-man roster. I understand that the Mets system is apparently not loaded with talent, but I can't see them risk losing a player just to make the back page cover of the tabloids. Getting a taste of AAA seems more likely, assuming there aren't healthy outfielders already there who the Mets prefer to advance.
   34. dlf Posted: June 29, 2018 at 04:43 PM (#5702346)
#33 - Get to September, shoot Jose Reyes into the sun, and call up Luis Guillorme who is already on the 40 man to cover the position need created by Reyes's well earned departure.
   35. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: June 29, 2018 at 04:46 PM (#5702353)

I don't see the point of a September MLB call-up either. He's not MLB ready, but he's shown enough potential for improvement IMO that they should treat him as more than a mere publicity stunt. So give him adequate time to develop in the minors.
   36. manchestermets Posted: June 29, 2018 at 04:55 PM (#5702355)
What's the downside?


They put him on the 40 man roster at some point, and subsequently lose the next Mike Trout in the Rule 5 Draft. This is the Mets, remember.
   37. dlf Posted: June 29, 2018 at 05:22 PM (#5702365)
Nah, he tries a jump pass but the ball bounces off deGrom, fracturing his eye socket, Nimmo trips, rupturing his ACL trying to comfort deGrom, Thor tears a abdominal muscle laughing at them, Coleman spays bleach at Callaway, and Seaver admits to using steroids in his vinyards.
   38. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: June 29, 2018 at 05:49 PM (#5702374)
Yeah, the problem with calling him up in September is having to punt someone off the 40-man to make room for him--and then he has to stay on the 40-man after that or, likely, one of the other 29 teams will be sufficiently enticed by the publicity to claim him on waivers.

Which you and I would view as more feature than bug, but the Mets' owners probably not so much. If I were a Mets fan I wouldn't be inclined to give a damn about Tebow playing in the majors in September--except for the fear that they will actually keep him on the 40-man through the winter.
   39. puck Posted: June 29, 2018 at 09:52 PM (#5702493)
It appears that of the 5 "Rumble Pony" OF's who have played in 30+ games, Tebow has the highest OPS.

(Rumble Ponies? Really?)
   40. dlf Posted: June 29, 2018 at 10:15 PM (#5702497)
And he'll now be on the Eastern League all star team in lovely Trenton NJ: link.
   41. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 29, 2018 at 10:23 PM (#5702501)
Rumble Ponies? Really?

Yeah, Tebow gets some extra credit for enduring that.
   42. homerwannabee Posted: June 29, 2018 at 11:07 PM (#5702510)
Isn't it technically harder to make a AA all star team, than to make the Major leagues?
   43. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: June 30, 2018 at 08:49 AM (#5702549)
#42, why do you say that? I would think that the very best players have been promoted to AAA or the majors already, so it opens the door for the solid performer to be an all-star.


.256/.335/.402

The team's slash is .251/.330/.401, so he's above average in all aspects!
   44. McCoy Posted: June 30, 2018 at 09:24 AM (#5702551)
Well, if the very best are promoted you are left with a lot of around average players to choose from.

You also only have 1 or 2 shots to make it to the AA all Star. After that you're either promoted, demoted, or cut.
   45. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: June 30, 2018 at 11:12 AM (#5702589)
The f*** is a Rumble Pony??
   46. Leroy Kincaid Posted: June 30, 2018 at 11:51 AM (#5702619)
I think it's one of the Outsiders.
   47. Accent Shallow is probably a hologram Posted: June 30, 2018 at 12:14 PM (#5702632)
And he'll now be on the Eastern League all star team in lovely Trenton NJ: link.


Trenton makes, the world takes.
   48. dlf Posted: June 30, 2018 at 12:28 PM (#5702639)
Speaking of athletes picking a secondary sport, John Smoltz missed the cut at the US Senior Open this weekend. After an ugly 84 on Thursday, His 77 on Friday, though, matched 7 and bettered more than 30 of his fellow competitors.
   49. Howie Menckel Posted: June 30, 2018 at 02:58 PM (#5702688)
Smoltz last week said something like qualifying there was his favorite sports achievement - which he said nobody seems to get.
   50. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 30, 2018 at 03:21 PM (#5702708)
Smoltz last week said something like qualifying there was his favorite sports achievement - which he said nobody seems to get.

Easy to say after you make $135M+ in MLB salary.
   51. RMc Has Bizarre Ideas to Fix Baseball Posted: June 30, 2018 at 04:15 PM (#5702751)
a chance at AAA to see what he's got at the next level.

Imagine...Tebow in Vegas! Talk about going where the sinners are!
   52. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: June 30, 2018 at 04:26 PM (#5702757)
Aren't we all sinners, though? Tebow will hit dingers for us despite our faults.
   53. bunyon Posted: June 30, 2018 at 10:23 PM (#5702914)
I can see a second act being more rewarding. 1) You probably haven't been insanely good at the second bit and 2) After being insanely good at baseball from 5 to 40, it must be a let down to not have that anymore. One last fleeting moment is probably amazing.

(Stated from the perspective of someone who never had a first)
   54. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 30, 2018 at 11:03 PM (#5702925)
a chance at AAA to see what he's got at the next level.

Imagine...Tebow in Vegas! Talk about going where the sinners are!

The Mets take over the Syracuse Chiefs next year. Safer for all concerned.
   55. dlf Posted: July 01, 2018 at 09:21 AM (#5702983)
I'm now picturing Lassus' choral group signing hymns from the outfield bleachers.

Edit: I spent about two months living out of a hotel in Columbia, SC shortly after the Fireflies started play but before the Tebow experience. My wife was wearing a team tank yesterday (a mason jar with lightening bugs circling it) and someone asked if she was a Tebow fan.
   56. Joe Bivens is NOT a clueless numpty Posted: July 01, 2018 at 09:58 AM (#5702992)
His 77 on Friday, though, matched 7 and bettered more than 30 of his fellow competitors.


Sure, but 64 or so make the cut, so he was solidly in the middle of all the guys who didn't.

edit...60 make the cut. He beat Hale Irwin by one shot! (Hale Irwin is 73 years old)
   57. Swoboda is freedom Posted: July 01, 2018 at 10:31 AM (#5703007)
Smoltz last week said something like qualifying there was his favorite sports achievement - which he said nobody seems to get.

I remember John Brodie, the NFL quarterback, has a decent run on the senior tour after retiring from the NFL.
   58. Howie Menckel Posted: July 01, 2018 at 10:48 AM (#5703015)
so did ex-Yankees pitcher Ralph Terry
   59. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: July 01, 2018 at 03:49 PM (#5703202)
This seems to be the current Mets thread, so: I just saw a Yahoo Sports bit (that I won't link to due to annoying autoplaying video) pointing out that July 1 is Bobby Bonilla Day, the annual holiday on which the Mets send Bonilla a check for $1,193,248.20.

Happy Bobby Bonilla Day, everyone!
   60. Lindor Truffles Posted: July 01, 2018 at 09:33 PM (#5703462)
Gonna guess that the .408 BABIP is unsustainable. Walk rate is up (7.9% to 8.2%) but not nearly as much as K rate (23.6% to 36.6%). Entering today, one more plate appearance this year.

And while TT might have a higher mental ceiling due to his late start, is that not neutralized by physical punishment from Meyer’s QB-as-FB philosophy?

EL has 12 teams and I assume 25-man rosters for their ASG, so you’re talking 4 per team. More competitive than the SL or TL, but not enough to disprove Tebow being anything more than a gimmick.

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