tim tebow is arguably the biggest pariah to ever play minor league baseball. He's about to be given a new stage, though. The New York Mets decided to make the organizational move of promoting him to the next level of their minor league system on Sunday. There's just one slight issue: He wasn't really playing well enough to warrant the promotion. So are the Mets in it for the money, the press, or the player?

Tebow is moving on up

Tebow will be making the leap from the Class A Columbia Fireflies to the Class A Advanced St. Lucie Mets. For the 29-year old, it will be the highest level of professional baseball he has ever played. He wasn't particularly good with the Fireflies, though. His slash line was just .222/.311/.340, which would be considered horrific at any level. He also led Columbia with 69 strikeouts.

Even if he's been out of professional baseball for a decade, teams promote players based on where they are at in total, not where they are at with consideration to a hiatus.

The Mets signed Tebow to a minor league deal on September 8, 2016. Since then, his stops have included the Arizona Fall League and the Mets' spring training camp. He has given fans a few highlights at each of those stops -- including a home run in his first at-bat with the Fireflies -- but little more than that. Many people still believe he is only playing baseball as a vanity project; is the organization treating it the same way by promoting him?

The 'real' reason for Tebow's promotion

There are no numbers on it yet, but the fact of the matter is that Tim Tebow sells. His brand of religiosity, mixed with his days as a star quarterback in college and a cerebral one in the NFL makes him one of the most polarizing athletes in the world. He has plenty of supporters that would buy a ticket to a game to watch him succeed. He arguably has just as many detractors who would buy a ticket to watch him strikeout and make a fool of himself.

It raises the question as to what the endgame is for all of this, especially this season. The Mets are an injury dumpster fire with virtually no chance of making the postseason with three long months ahead. It's tough to sell tickets in the dog days of the summer with a losing record. Tim Tebow can completely change the equation. General manager Sandy Alderson would never in a million years admit that such a promotion could be on the cards, but when thinking about the possibility of an empty Citi Field in September, is there any better solution?

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