Tim Tebow's minor league assignment

The New York Mets announced on Monday that Tim Tebow's journey to the majors will start in SC with the team's low Class-A Affiliate, the Columbia Fireflies. That's obviously great news for the Fireflies - they now boast high-profile former National Football League quarterback on their roster whom they can promote to draw fans to their games.

Tebow played sparingly for the Jets in 2012, and later spent time in preseason camp with the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles. In 2009, the numbers were more modest (199 yards passing and 26 rushing), but Tebow and the Gators wrapped up their first unbeaten SEC campaign since 2006. In short, the Fireflies basically called their shot here. He has appeared in eight spring training games this year for the Mets.

Longtime New York Mets general manger Sandy Alderson told Newsday that Tebow has improved pretty dramatically. He then played in the Arizona Fall League, where he struggled, hitting.194 with 20 strikeouts in 62 at-bats.

Tebow's debut with the Fireflies will be April 6 against Augusta. The Gators won both of Tebow's trips to SC, 51-31 in his Heisman Trophy season of 2007 and 24-14 in 2009. But he will be playing every day, and doing so soon, much of the reason he will be in the South Atlantic League rather than in short-season Brooklyn, which doesn't begin play until later in the summer. He entered the game hitting.235. "I'm sure he'll be a great influence on the kids in Columbia and the fans will enjoy watching him play". Maintaining that signing Tebow was not a farce, publicity stunt, or money grab, Alderson noted, "We have lots of players in our organization who are just that: organizational players". The fact that he's starting at Columbia, he's really not taking anybody's spot.

Tebow started 11 games for the Broncos in 2011 and led Denver to an AFC West Division title and a playoff victory.

  • Julie Sanders