The New York Mets have signed former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow to a minor-league contract, the team announced on Thursday.
The deal was first reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Financial terms and the length of the contract were not disclosed, but the Mets said the 29-year-old will report to the Instructional League in Port St. Lucie, Fla. on Sept. 18. Manager Terry Collins said that Tebow will not be available at all times as he also fulfills his duties as a broadcaster for ESPN.
General manager Sandy Alderson noted that the decision to sign Tebow was based on his baseball talent and was not a publicity stunt.
"While I and the organization, I think, are mindful of the novel nature of this situation, this decision was strictly driven by baseball," Alderson said, according to ESPN. "This was not something that was driven by marketing considerations or anything of the sort. We are extremely intrigued with the potential that Tim has."
Tebow worked out for 28 of the 30 MLB teams during a showcase on Aug. 30, showing impressive power, running the 60-yard dash and doing outfield drills. Tebow reportedly narrowed his options to five interested teams before ultimately choosing the Mets.
"I know this is a tough game," Tebow said. "But I'm looking forward to putting in the work and I felt like this was the best fit."
The Atlanta Braves were among the teams that were reportedly interested in Tebow. The Braves said earlier this week that they were engaged in conversations with Tebow's representatives on the possibility of signing him to a deal.
Tebow hasn't played organized baseball since his junior year in high school. He spent six seasons on various NFL rosters, although he hadn't appeared in an NFL regular season game since 2012 when he was a member of the New York Jets.
- Scooby Axson