Alder­son: Te­bow deal ‘about base­ball’

Baltimore Sun - - BASEBALL - By Charles Odum

AT­LANTA — Mets gen­eral man­ager Sandy Alder­son is de­fend­ing the team’s deal with Tim Te­bow, say­ing the de­ci­sion is about base­ball and not an op­por­tu­nity to sell mer­chan­dise.

Te­bow, 29, agreed Thurs­day to a mi­nor-league con­tract that in­cludes a $100,000 sign­ing bonus. He is at­tempt­ing to launch a base­ball ca­reer four years af­ter the end of his time as an NFL quar­ter­back.

Alder­son said Fri­day it would be im­prac­ti­cal to make such a big com­mit­ment to Te­bow only as an at­tempt to mar­ket his name.

“I have to tell you that the no­tion that we’re go­ing to spend $100,000 on a bonus for a player so we can sell a cou­ple hun­dred dol­lars’ worth of T-shirts in Kingsport, those eco­nomics don’t work,” Alder­son said.

“This was not about mak­ing money. The op­por­tu­nity to sell T-shirts and the like is al­most nonex­is­tent.

“This was about base­ball. This was about giv­ing some­body an op­por­tu­nity to play.”

The Mets have a rookie-league team in Kingsport, Ten­nessee.

Alder­son said sign­ing Te­bow “was my idea.”

“Why not?” he asked. “From our stand­point, this is an in­ter­est­ing ex­per­i­ment.”

Te­bow will re­port Sept. 18 to the In­struc­tional League in Port St. Lu­cie, Flor­ida. He will test his skills against younger play­ers for three weeks be­fore the Mets de­ter­mine his next des­ti­na­tion.

Bo Jack­son, Deion San­ders and Brian Jor­dan are the only sig­nif­i­cant play­ers to have ex­ten­sive ca­reers in both MLB and the NFL in the last three decades.

“We don’t have to lis­ten to what ev­ery­body else wants us to do with our lives,” Te­bow said on a con­fer­ence call. “We get to do what we want.”

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