COLUMBIA, South Carolina (AP) — The first half of Tim Tebow's first professional baseball season is complete. The former American football star appears to have made progress with the New York Mets' Class A affiliate.
Tebow began the season like a storybook star, hitting two home runs in his first four games as an outfielder/designated hitter for the Columbia Fireflies. The Mets prospect has had just one homer in the 10 weeks since. Yet, he's continued to grind heading into the league's All-Star break this week.
He had a five-game hitting streak — the longest of his career — and helped the Fireflies finish second in the Southern Division of the South Atlantic League. The team entered Sunday with a half-game lead, yet lost to the Charleston (South Carolina) RiverDogs while Greenville beat Rome (Georgia) 4-3 to claim the Southern Division.
A look how Tebow has fared this week and this season:
HIGHLIGHTS: Tebow had a hit in five straight games, his longest streak of the season. His best game this week was Wednesday in a 6-2 victory at Greenville. Tebow went 1 for 2 with a double and two RBIs. He also walked twice.
AT THE PLATE: Tebow's average held steady at .224 after going 5 of 23 for the week at the plate. He suffered eight strikeouts during the week, including three in Sunday's 5-1 loss when a victory would've earned the Fireflies the division's first-half title and the playoff spot that goes with it.
ON THE SEASON: Tebow is 45 of 201 on the season with 21 RBIs and 66 strikeouts.
IN THE FIELD: Tebow made his fifth error of the season this week with a bad throw in a loss to Charleston.
BAT TOSS: Tim Tebow's most impressive feat may have been the inadvertent bat toss Saturday night during a 3-0 loss at Charleston. Tebow lost the grip on the bat and sent it soaring deep into the second level seats on the first base side of the stands. Tebow, unfazed, found another bat — but struck out in Columbia's defeat.
WHAT'S NEXT: After a couple of days off, Tebow and the Fireflies pick up the second half of the season at home with a four-game series against the Kannapolis (North Carolina) Intimidators.
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