It’s probably too late for anyone to save the Mets’ 2017 season, but prospect Tim Tebow is one step closer to the major leagues. Mets General Manager Sandy Alderson announced before New York’s series finale in San Francisco on Sunday that Tebow, 29, is being promoted from low-Class A Columbia to advanced-Class A St. Lucie.
Tebow entered his 64th and final game with Columbia batting .222/.311/.340 with three home runs, 23 RBI and a team-high 69 strikeouts in 212 at-bats.
“I think we’re pleased with his first half of the season,” Alderson said. “It’s not like he’s tearing up the league, but at the same time, all of the indications are positive in terms of various things that we look at — chase rates and exit velocity. The bottom line is the average isn’t there, but he’s improving.”
Tebow, a former Heisman Trophy winner and NFL quarterback who retired from football to pursue a baseball career last summer, signed with the Mets in September. He played for New York’s instructional league team and in the Arizona Fall League before being assigned to Columbia out of spring training.
“I’m not sure how much of an additional challenge it will be,” Alderson said of Tebow’s promotion. “But it’s a step up. We certainly think he can handle it. . . . We recognize that this is an unusual circumstance. But we just felt given everything involved, that this was about the right time for him to move to high-A.”
If nothing else, Tebow’s promotion should lead to more ticket sales in St. Lucie. Columbia ranks second in the South Atlantic League in home attendance this season while averaging 1,500 more fans per game than last season.