Tim Tebow will begin the 2019 baseball season in Class AAA, and New York Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen is making it clear that the 31-year-old may get a chance in the majors.
The Mets' new GM announced early in November that Tebow would be with the Class AAA Syracuse Chiefs to start the new season and reaffirmed in an interview Wednesday that the former Heisman Trophy winner is just "one step away."
While obviously, yes, Class AAA is technically "one step away" from the majors, it was surprising to hear Van Wagenen so bullish on Tebow's chances. Van Wagenen said that an injury in the major league outfield could open the door for Tebow's promotion.
“If Tim Tebow is the best offensive player in Triple-A at that point, he’s going to be in (manager Mickey Callaway's) lineup,” Van Wagenen said on WFAN radio.
Van Wagenen previously represented Tebow as the player's agent with CAA Baseball.
Tebow batted .273 with six homers and 36 RBI in 84 games in 2018 for Class AA Binghamton before an injury – a broken hamate bone in his right hand – required surgery and cut his season short in July. He hit .301 in June and was batting .340 in July before the injury.
If the season started today, the Mets would have Michael Conforto, Juan Lagares and Brandon Nimmo as the team's starting outfield. Tebow is not currently on the team's 40-man roster.