Reds and GM Walt Jocketty agree to three-year extension

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Walt Jocketty declined to talk about his contract status last week, but today the 60-year-old general manager agreed to a three-year extension with the Reds that runs through 2014.

Jocketty originally joined the Reds as a special advisor to then-GM Wayne Krivsky in early 2008 and then took over the GM role when Krivsky was fired a short time later.

Mark Sheldon of MLB.com notes that the Reds are slightly below .500 (319-323) since Jocketty took over, including a disappointing 76-80 mark this year, but Cincinnati made the playoffs last season for the first time since 1995 and Jocketty was named Sporting News executive of the year.

He was previously GM of the Cardinals from 1995-2007, during which time St. Louis made seven trips to the playoffs and had just three losing records.

Jocketty won’t have a ton of payroll room to work with this offseason and signing Brandon Phillips to a long-term deal may prove difficult, but the Reds are certainly well positioned for contention in 2012.

Mets invite Tim Tebow to spring training

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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.