Tim Tebow’s baseball era comes to an end

beginning his transition to professional baseball in 2016, Tim Tebow has followed a unique path. The Heisman Trophy winner, veteran quarterback in the NFL and SEC football analyst for ESPN, started as a 29-year-old freshman in college who hadn’t played on a varsity team since his freshman year in high school. On Wednesday, he announced that he was done with his decision to resign.

To some he is a mockery, to others a player who should be taken seriously for a while. Tebow had a minor league career of five years, ending after signing with the Mets at 8. September 2016 certainly had its moments, though it immediately raised questions about how seriously to take it.

Later that month, Tebow hit his first homerun in his first Training League game :

. BOOM! @TimTebow hits a homer during a leather league game! pic.twitter.com/8h9JCzr7Br

– Katie Johnson (@Katie_Johnson_) September 28, 2016

Tebow then went to the Arizona Fall League, where he batted a suspect .194 with no home run and struck out 20 times in 71 appearances. But in his first full season in the minors after being invited to spring training, Tebow gave up a game at the 6. In April 2017, he made his debut with the Colombian Fireflies at low altitude, where he hit a home run in his very first at bat:

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Bob Holtzman tells how Tim Tebow came to the aid of a fan who suffered a seizure in the stands during Tuesday’s Fall League game in Arizona.

And after he was promoted to the big leagues, the St. Louis, the St. Louis, the St. Louis, the St. Louis. Lucie Mets made another great impression on her first day with the team. In his 2017 season, which was spent between the Fireflies and St. Lucia, Tebow had a combined score of .226/.309/.347.

The fact that it was a blockbuster for the fans was probably just as important to the profits of the entertainment industry:

Tim Tebow’s impact on the miners has been significant.

In 2017, he brought an average of 2,500 additional fans on the road for Sully League teams.

This equates to approximately $1.6 million in additional revenue….

Tebow Year 1: https://t.co/GVnXjpjaLq

Second year: https://t.co/3ClcqT7cPa pic.twitter.com/6yv1y6R0Rd

– Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) February 18, 2021

In his second season, however, he changed the conversation when people started taking him seriously as a Double-A player in the Eastern Double-A League, as he got some All-Star appearances. But as ESPN noted in evaluating his career thus far, comparisons to other stars in the two sports have not helped him in his baseball career:

Among the top players in two sports, Tebow has yet to overtake those five – again, only in terms of number of minor league careers:

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– Deion Sanders (1988-2001): 19 in 253 games, hitting .286/.351/.433.
– Brian Jordan (1988-2006): 22 in 226 games, hit .292/.355/.449.
– D.J. Dozier (1990-1993): 39 in 391 games, key .272/.365/.452.
– Drew Henson (1998-2003): 67 in 501 games, hit .248/.304/.424.
– Chris Weinke (1991-1996): 69 in 716 games, hit .248/.337/.381.

Four of those five players eventually made it to the premier league. Sanders and Brian Jordan had strong careers in both sports at the highest level, but each was better at one than the other – Sanders was inducted into the Professional Football Hall of Fame, while Jordan was an All-Star and a key player for the Cardinals and MLB Braves. Dozier and Henson barely showed up for baseball, but at least they went to Shaw.

In 2018, the .273/.336/.399 line from this brilliant Double-A season ended up being Tebow’s best score in baseball. His 2019 performance against pitchers on a major league pitching staff was mediocre (.163/.240/.255) in just 77 games in a season marked by injuries, and his 2020 minor league season was derailed by the KOVID-19 pandemic that also derailed Tebow’s bid to participate in the World Baseball Classic as a member of the Philippine national team in March 2020.

The controversy over his career leading up to Diamond, the enthusiasm for everything Tebow generated from some of his fans knew few bounds. He showed his willingness to comfort a fan who had suffered a seizure after an AFL game:

And fans reached out to him when he shared the death of his beloved dog Bronco on Instagram.

Tebow acknowledged his many supporters in a statement issued by the Mets on Wednesday: Thanks again to everyone who supported this great baseball game, I will always cherish the time.

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