In a groove, Tebow spurns Spurrier

Mets farmhand rejects Hall of Fame coach to stick with baseball

Tim Tebow is hitting .450 (9-for-20) with a homer and five runs scored in his last seven games for Binghamton. (Terrance Williams/MiLB.com)

By Marisa Ingemi / MiLB.com | June 24, 2018 11:17 PM

Those hoping to see Tim Tebow back on the football field, don't hold your breath.

Contacted recently by Hall of Fame coach Steve Spurrier with an offer to play in the fledgling Alliance of American Football, the Mets farmhand declined and said he would continue his baseball career.

"He said, 'Coach, I'm gonna keep swinging the bat and see what happens,'" Spurrier said Friday on The Paul Finebaum Show. "And I agree, that's what he should do. If he can get to the big leagues, that's what he should do."

Spurrier is coaching the Orlando team, one of eight entries in the new southern-based league that will begin play after the next Super Bowl. He said he reached out to Tebow via text.

Tebow made his Double-A debut with the Binghamton Rumble Ponies in April and is hitting .256/.336/.400 with five homers, 24 RBIs, 26 runs scored and 80 strikeouts in 63 games. The 30-year-old remains a legend in Florida after winning the Heisman Trophy in 2007 and leading the University of Florida to its second national championship in three years the following season.

"If for some reason, [baseball] doesn't work out, I told him we have a No. 15 down in Orlando waiting for him," Spurrier said. "I think Tim Tebow is a winner."

Tebow is in the midst of his most productive stretch of the season, with hits in nine of his last 17 at-bats. He has a .320/.370/.480 slash line in June with a homer, five doubles, five RBIs and 11 runs scored in 18 games. The left fielder/designated hitter is coming off back-to-back two-hit games, slugging an opposite-field homer on Saturday.

Video: Tebow goes yard for Binghamton

"I'm improving, seeing pitches, leaving some bad pitches," Tebow told the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin on Friday. "I'm trying to be more direct to the baseball to do more damage with it."

"He comes in here in he's so positive," Rumble Ponies manager Luis Rojas told the newspaper. "He carries good vibes all the time, so he's feeling pretty good. … He's a positive human being. When he works -- he works really hard and a lot, by the way -- he's a guy who will come in and share how he feels. 'I feel great today. My swing feels on point.' It's really encouraging, and from a coach perspective it's really good to hear feedback on how he's feeling. He's at a point where he's seeing the ball and hitting it and not thinking too much. He's translating everything into the game."

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Tebow has raised his average 22 points since June 15. He began his Minor League career a year ago and batted .226 between Class A Columbia and Class A Advanced St. Lucie, combining for 52 RBIs and 126 strikeouts in 126 games. 

After his college career, Tebow played in the NFL for the Denver Broncos and New York Jets, also spending time on the rosters of the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles. 

Marisa Ingemi is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @Marisa_Ingemi. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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