As we know, Tim Tebow is currently working towards a career in baseball – like, professional baseball – and even has a showcase lined up for MLB teams in Los Angeles early next week. In anticipation for his big debut, Tebow has been working out in Arizona with some former MLB players like catcher Chad Moeller and closer David Aardsma.
But it was Aardsma who left the outing most impressed. “I honestly believe that Tim could have a future in this game.” Now, Aardsma isn’t quite an MLB quality pitcher anymore, but he was in Triple-A earlier this season and is still just 34 years old. He’s not nobody, and his opinion does carry some weight (well, with us at least).
But more importantly, we now have a good bit of data/video on which to evaluate Tebow. So let’s take a look at some batting practice, and see what we can discern:
Now, I am definitely #NotAScout and this is certainly a low-pressure batting practice session, but – and I can’t believe I’m saying this – he doesn’t look that bad, right? Do I think he’ll ever make it to the Major Leagues? Almost certainly not, but there’s not nothing to like about his swing and athleticism.
After the BP session, Aardsma was impressed with Tebow’s raw skills and power, but was most interested in is ability to make adjustments on the fly. According to Aardsma, it “wasn’t like he was swinging at the same plane and getting fooled. He was aggressively attacking the ball where it was.”
That’s actually fairly visible in the second video. Tebow may swing through both pitches – an offspeed pitch down and away and a fastball up in the zone – but he’s right on top of both of them. For having never played professional baseball, that’s not a bad start. Aardsma even likened his session to a guy getting his timing back in Spring Training, more so than someone who’s never played the game before.
But despite the praise, the former closer was at least a little concerned with his lack of experience. “He needs to see a lot more pitching and understand what the pitcher is watching and seeing from him and adjusting, Aardmsa said via Fox Sports. “That’s not something you know until you’re in it.”
Indeed, Tebow may have all the athleticism in the world, but so do plenty of guys. Baseball is a lot more complicated than that – it’s a skill sport – and he’ll need to learn quickly if he is serious about this attempt. I, for one, cannot wait for his showcase next week.