You’re not going to believe this, but in the wake of the Cardinals trading for a white middle infielder with moderate-at-best skills yesterday, someone has written a column praising him as a scrappy gritty hard worker, complete with a David Eckstein comparison. I’m so shocked that, as we speak, I’m clutching my pearls and hoping my fainting couch is right behind me where I left it.
But how scrappy is Ryan Theriot? Matt Sebek tries to figure it out, and the results may be the all-time best deconstruction of scappiosity ever written. If you think it’s just about being white and otherwise untalented you don’t know what scrappiness truly is. The click is worth it for the chart alone. I don’t literally laugh out loud very often, but Sebek’s column had me laughing out loud. Literally.
Tim Tebow isn’t letting go of his major league dreams just yet. The former NFL quarterback is slated to appear with the Mets during spring training this year, extending what initially looked like an ill-fated career choice for at least one more season. Per the club’s official announcement on Friday, he’ll join a group of spring training invitees that includes top-30 prospects like Peter Alonso, P.J. Conlon, Patrick Mazeika and David Thompson.
Tebow, 30, hasn’t taken to professional baseball as gracefully as expected. He batted a cumulative .226/.309/.347 with eight home runs and a .656 OPS in 486 plate appearances for Single-A Columbia and High-A St. Lucie in 2017. While that wasn’t enough to compel the Mets to give the aging outfielder a big league tryout, there’s no denying that Tebow brought substantial benefit to their minor league affiliates — in the form of increased attendance figures and ticket sales, that is.
Even after the Mets were booted from the NL East race last September, they resisted the idea of promoting Tebow for a late-season attendance boost of their own. That’s not to say they’re planning on taking the same approach in 2018; Tebow will undoubtedly get his cup of coffee in the majors at some point, but for now, a Grapefruit League tryout is likely as close as he’ll ever get to playing with the team’s big league roster on an everyday basis.