God Continues To Look In Favor Of His Favorite Athlete; Tebow Hits Walk Off HR

Written by the AP at New York Times.com

Tim Tebow seems to have found his stroke since getting back to his home state.

Tebow hit the first game-ending home run of his pro baseball career Thursday night, lifting the Class A St. Lucie Mets over the Daytona Tortugas, 5-4, in a seven-inning game.

Tebow, a former N.F.L. quarterback, went deep with one out against the Cincinnati Reds farmhand Austin Orewiler, smacking a first-pitch fastball over the fence in left field. Tebow was doused with Gatorade and mobbed by teammates when he reached home plate.

“It was fun to celebrate with all the guys,” Tebow said.

Tebow, 29, said it was his first walk-off homer since his junior year at Nease High School in Ponte Vedra Beach, near Jacksonville. He did not play his senior year in order to focus on football. He said the homer in high school gave his team the district championship.

“That felt pretty good,” Tebow said, “but this one was special.”

It is his third home run in 16 Florida State League games following a promotion from Class A Columbia, and his sixth home run in 80 games over all in his first season as a minor leaguer.

Tebow has hit safely in 11 straight games and is batting .327 with 10 R.B.I. with St. Lucie. All three of his home runs with the Mets have gone to the opposite field.

“The goal is just to stay behind as many balls as I can,” he said. “See it, let it get deep. When you stay behind it, it goes the other way.”

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