Posts Tagged Phil Niekro
(Editors Note: The following was written during Mr. Spillett’s regular Saturday journey to Quarg, a parallel dimension located in the Glyming Galaxy. In this dimension, fortunately, Tebow Time and Tebow Mania do not exist)
Things keep getting worse for the New York Mets. Following a dreadful 2011 campaign, the Mets most reliable starter, R.A. Dickey, was consumed this week by a pack of snarling mountain loins on his quest to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. Dickey, who finished 2011 with a sterling 3.28 ERA, was ripped to shreds only moments before he reached the top of the mountain leaving the Mets 2012 playoff hopes in tatters.
However, things might be starting to look up. The Mets today signed knuckleballer and former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow. Tebow, who was released by the Broncos yesterday after throwing 12 interceptions in the first quarter against a Pittsburgh Steeler defense that was using 11 defensive linemen, was snapped up immediately by the pitching starved Mets.
Tebow, who hasn’t pitched a baseball game since he was an 11-year-old little leaguer, was shocked at first by the offer. He had counted on spending a good portion of his adult life underthrowing open receivers in the NFL. But, a chance to pitch for an organization poised on the brink of greatness, like the Mets, was too much to refuse.
The question is, can Tebow pitch in the majors? Sandy Alderson certainly thinks so. After watching Tebow throw wobbly, erratic passes to no one in particular, the Mets GM began to believe that he is a natural knuckleball pitcher. Scientists have studied the motion of the ball leaving Tebow’s hand and are at a loss to explain it. “It’s as if the ball is being guided by a drunken stumbling vagrant,” said NASA Chief Physicist Aaron Bowles. Alderson, however, believes its trajectory is reminiscent of how the ball used to leave Phil Niekro’s hand.
Alderson believes that if Tebow could make a baseball do what he does with a football, he could be virtually unhittable. Beyond his potential, Alderson was impressed by Tebow’s willingness to pitch for free. The Mets, who project their payroll to be somewhere around 150 dollars next season were looking for a low risk, low reward signing to eat innings for them. Tebow seemed to fit the mold perfectly.
Alderson also admitted he was excited about the idea of Tebow bringing positive attention to a franchise that has spent the better part of the last five years being treated like a leper colony. “Who wouldn’t be moved by the story of a kid from an upper middle class family, who represents the most popular religion in the United States defying the odds and becoming successful? The chances were one in a million. He’s an underdog in every sense of the word,” said a teary-eyed Alderson.