Tebow turns 30, looking to shake slump with St. Lucie

Tim Tebow
Tim Tebow of the St. Lucie Mets celebrates his birthday today. [HERALD-TRIBUNE STAFF PHOTO / DENNIS MAFFEZZOLI]

The Associated Press

PORT ST. LUCIE — Tim Tebow’s twenties ended in a slump.
That is, a slump replete with a little drama.
Over his last 17 games, Tebow is hitting only 7 for 59 for the St. Lucie Mets, a freefall that has seen his batting average plummet 77 points from .315 to .238 in just under three weeks.
Perhaps some birthday cake can get him going again: The Heisman Trophy winner out of UF and former NFL quarterback turns 30 today (Monday).
Tebow came into this season saying that while he was taking baseball seriously, he was also looking at the game as another of his many ways to try and touch as many lives as he could. That was as evident as ever in recent days, when he helped a special-needs person sing “God Bless America” during a stoppage in a game and when news broke of how he interrupted his on-deck process to meet an autistic boy — then hit a home run .
A look at Tebow’s week:

HIGHLIGHTS: Tebow’s eighth-inning single brought home what became the winning run in St. Lucie’s 6-5 victory over Florida on Aug. 9.

AT THE PLATE: Tebow batted 2 for 21 (.095) this week, with two RBIs and two runs scored. He also struck out eight times.

ON THE SEASON: Counting his time in Columbia of the South Atlantic League, Tebow has played 109 games and is 83 for 365 (.227) with eight home runs, 48 RBIs, 35 walks and 109 strikeouts. In 45 games with St. Lucie, he’s hitting .238 with five home runs and 25 RBIs.

IN THE FIELD: Tebow still has only two errors with St. Lucie, with a .952 fielding percentage. He had seven with Columbia, with an .879 fielding percentage.

SCARY MOMENT: Tebow’s helmet was knocked off when he was hit by a pitch in the head at Tampa on Saturday night. He remained in the game.

BOBBLEHEAD TIME: You knew this was coming. St. Lucie announced plans to give away Tebow bobbleheads on Sept. 1, the night of its home finale. For a $20 ticket, fans are guaranteed the Tebow bobblehead — with portions of the proceeds going to a children’s center and the Tim Tebow Foundation.

WHAT’S NEXT: Tebow and the Mets continue an eight-game road trip this week, starting a four-game series Monday at Clearwater. They return home Friday to start a three-game set against Dunedin.