Earlier in spring training, Mets General Manager Sandy Alderson praised Tebow’s work ethic, power, and his positive influence on teammates and minor league baseball as a whole. Alderson even admitted that the Tebow experiment had changed.
“I expect Tim Tebow will play in the major leagues one day,” Alderson said in mid-February.
In his first full season in the Mets’ minor leagues last year, Tebow hit .226 with eight home runs, 52 R.B.I. and 126 strikeouts in 126 games. He improved as the season progressed and was promoted to Class A-Advanced St. Lucie.
Tebow said Mets officials encouraged him to keep working on his weaknesses. Reaching the major leagues is still his goal.
“Just keep putting in work every day and hopefully you get the opportunity,” he said.
Earlier in the afternoon, Callaway made another announcement that had appeared inevitable for weeks. For the second consecutive season, Noah Syndergaard will start opening day for the Mets, on March 29 against the St. Louis Cardinals in New York.
Jacob deGrom will start the second game of the season on March 31 despite having earned the chance to start the opener because he was the Mets’ best and healthiest starter last season.
A minor bout of back stiffness in late February slowed deGrom, and he made his first start of spring training on Sunday while his fellow starters had already made at least three.
“It jut didn’t make sense for us to push it to get him ready for opening day,” Callaway said.
The Mets said X-ray results on outfielder Yoenis Cespedes’s sore right wrist were negative for fractures. Cespedes said he didn’t think much of the discomfort when it first appeared last week and he kept playing until it persisted, and he was scratched from Tuesday’s game.