Sunday, December 10, 2017
Sports

Tim Tebow starts against Tampa Yankees, delights fans

TAMPA — The moment Bill and Adele Geyer had waited for was finally here.

The St. Lucie Mets were in the second game of four in their series against the Tampa Yankees at George M. Steinbrenner Field. The 60-year-old Tampa residents showed up in Tim Tebow Mets shirseys, hoping to see the former Florida quarterback. While Tebow didn't start Thursday, he was hitting seventh and playing leftfield Friday.

In the second inning, Tebow came to the plate in a key situation: Facing an early 2-0 deficit, the Mets had a runner on second with one out.

Tebow couldn't bring catcher Patrick Mazeika around to score, but his groundout to second advanced him to third. And Bill was content with that result.

"Failure is 70 percent of the game," he said. 'The best players in the world are successful 30 percent of the time."

Tebow's absence Thursday wasn't due to injury ­— he entered the game in the eighth inning as a defensive replacement in leftfield. Tebow was just getting a day off.

The former UF football star, who turns 30 Monday, has been in a nasty slump. Entering Friday, he was 6-for-49 in his previous 14 games.

St. Petersburg resident Stephanie Davies, 29, suspects a problem in his swing. She's played softball for 15 years, and from her vantage point along the third-base line, she said she detected problems in his mechanics.

"It looks like he's trying to swing for the fence, versus actually trying to get a base hit," she said. "If he focuses a little more on his mechanics, he'll come out of the slump."

For the second straight night, the Yankees drew a massive crowd. Fans cheered when Tebow came to the plate in the second, and applauded his productive out.

And the fans got a better outcome the next time around.

With two runners on, Tebow laced a ground ball to the right of shortstop Hoy Jun Park. He dove for it, but it glanced off his glove and trickled into leftfield, scoring Mazeika from second.

The cheers Tebow got as he stood at first base — and as he scored later on shortstop J. C. Rodriguez's sacrifice fly — were some of the loudest of the night.

As Tebow makes adjustments to snap out of his funk — before Thursday's game, he said he was adjusting his timing and swing — David Jean-Louis has faith in him. The St. Petersburg resident, 29, expects Tebow to rebound.

"He's a winner, since college, since high school," he said. "He's Tebow, so he'll find a way to get through it. It happens."

The Mets have had a tough time in Tampa. After losing 11-5 on Thursday, they found themselves in a 12-5 hole Friday through six innings.

And with storm clouds brewing outside the field, the Geyers weren't interested in sticking around after Tebow's RBI single.

"We're going to beat that," Bill said, pointing at the ominous sky. "If the weather was not threatening, we would probably stay a little longer, but we are trying to beat that out of here."

Comments

Monday’s sports on TV/radio

TODAYCollege basketballBryant at Louisville7 p.m.ESPNUChicago State at Northwestern7 p.m.FS1Drake at Minnesota8 p.m.Big TenAlabama A&M at DePaul9 p.m.FS1NBAHeat at Grizzlies8 p.m.Fox SunPelicans at Rockets8 p.m.NBARaptors at Clippers10:30 p.m.NBANFLP...
Updated: 17 minutes ago
nflweek14

nflweek14

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — The snow sure suits Shady. LeSean McCoy scored on a 21-yard run with 1:33 left in overtime for the Bills’ 13-7 win Sunday over the Colts in a wintry, white-out setting best suited for snow shoes and sled dogs. Mush! He finished w...
Updated: 17 minutes ago

Shorthanded Blues win fourth in row

ST. LOUIS — Vladimir Tarasenko scored with 35 seconds left in overtime, and the Blues, down two key players, beat the Sabres 3-2 Sunday night. Brayden Schenn and Paul Stastny also scored, and Joel Edmundson recorded two assists as the Blues topped th...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Celtics get payback for loss

DETROIT — The Celtics prevented Andre Drummond from scoring in the paint and quieted Reggie Jackson on the perimeter. That helped Boston to a 91-81 victory Sunday over the Pistons and avenged a rare loss.When Detroit beat the Celtics last month in Bo...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Veteran 3B Evan Longoria as uncertain as anyone about Rays’ plans

Veteran 3B Evan Longoria as uncertain as anyone about Rays’ plans

LAKE BUENA VISTA — Uncertain with all the talk about potentially rebuilding if the Rays would go as far as trading franchise cornerstone 3B Evan Longoria?So is he."I don’t know what to think, really,’’ Longoria said via text message Sunday night as t...
Updated: 1 hour ago
NFL Week 14: What we learned

NFL Week 14: What we learned

Aaron Rodgers is ready to return, but is he needed in Green Bay? Backup QB Brett Hundley is 2-0 in OT; Rodgers is 1-7. The Pack has its Mr. Clutch, right? Yeah, right. Its 27-21 OT win at Cleveland keeps it alive for a wild-card spot. Mr. Rodgers, yo...
Updated: 1 hour ago
O’Hair-Stricker team wins QBE Shootout in Naples

O’Hair-Stricker team wins QBE Shootout in Naples

NAPLES — Steve Stricker provided the pep talk and Sean O’Hair delivered the shot to secure victory Sunday in the QBE Shootout. Stricker and O’Hair closed with 8-under 64 for a two-shot victory over Graeme McDowell and Shane Lowry, effectively clinchi...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Sports in brief

Sports in brief

Soccermanchester city keeps up record pace with win over manchester unitedMANCHESTER, England — Surely nothing can stop Manchester City now. The race for the English Premier League title is turning into a procession after City beat fierce rival Manch...
Updated: 3 hours ago
FSU beats Tulane in Tampa, stays unbeaten in basketball

FSU beats Tulane in Tampa, stays unbeaten in basketball

Updated: 3 hours ago
Veteran trio pacing new-look Bulls

Veteran trio pacing new-look Bulls

Nine games into the Brian Gregory era at USF, the program's short-term trajectory remains difficult to project.Can the Bulls (4-5) finish with a winning record in non-conference play? Can it win at least five conference games for the first time since...
Updated: 3 hours ago