Tim Tebow says he's retiring from baseball after 'awesome journey'


Tim Tebow's days as a professional athlete appear to be numbered.

The former NFL quarterback turned TV football analyst and, later, New York Mets minor league baseball player, revealed on Wednesday night that his career on the diamond has come to an end, saying he feels "called in other directions."

Tebow, 33, thanked the Mets, their fans, and general manager Sandy Alderson for the opportunity.

"I want to thank the Mets, Mr. Alderson, the fans and all my teammates for the chance to be a part of such a great organization. I loved every minute of the journey, but at this time I feel called in other directions...

"I never want to be partially in on anything. I always want to be 100% in on whatever I choose. Thank you again for everyone’s support of this awesome journey in baseball, I’ll always cherish my time as a Met! #LGM"

The former Florida Gators football star joined the Mets organization late in 2016, in what was widely regarded as a publicity stunt. He made his first appearance in pro ball later that year, in the Arizona Fall League.

The left-handed-hitting outfielder and DH slowly scaled the ranks of the Mets farm system, topping out in 2019 with Triple-A Syracuse, where he hit a paltry .163/.240/.255 in 264 plate appearances.

His best season came in 2018 with Double-A Binghamton, where he registered a .734 OPS and eight homers while playing against substantially younger competition.

At least one former Mets farmhand blasted the Mets' apparent affinity for Tebow as a "mockery. "Last year, former second-round draft pick Andrew Church ripped the Amazin's for allocating one of their precious few minor league roster spots on a "celebrity."

The arrival of new owner Steve Cohen, meanwhile, did not herald a change in the organization's approach to Tebow, as the Mets this week had invited him to spring camp as a non-roster invitee.

The former Broncos and Jets quarterback was home for the 2020 season, when the entirety of the minor league baseball season was suspended amid the coronavirus crisis.

Tebow, who also had brief training camps stints with the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots, finishes his minor league baseball career with a line of .223/.299/.338 and 18 homers in 1,048 plate appearances.