Baseball

Fans flocking to see Tebow, Fireflies on road

Tim Tebow homers in first at-bat for Columbia Fireflies

Tim Tebow hits a home run in first at bat with minor league baseball team Columbia Fireflies.
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Tim Tebow hits a home run in first at bat with minor league baseball team Columbia Fireflies.

A look back at how the Columbia Fireflies fared this week and a look at what is ahead for them this week:

How they fared: Columbia went 3-4 for this week and is 13-12 overall. The Fireflies are tied for third with Charleston, 3  ½ games back of first-place co-leaders Rome and Greenville.

Fans on road flocking to see Tebow, Fireflies: Fans aren’t just showing up at Spirit Communications Park to see the Fireflies and Tim Tebow play. They are also packing them in every time Columbia has hit the road this season.

All four of Columbia’s games in Hickory this weekend were sold out and eight of their 11 games on the road this season.

In 11 Columbia road games, the attendance total is 50,679, an average of 4,607 per game.

Tebow at the plate: Tebow continued his progress at the plate and went 6-for-21 this week and hit safely in four of his six games . His average improved from .218 to start the week to .237.

Tebow has two homers and nine 19 and has struck out 20 times in 72 at-bats.

Tebow also had his first outfield assist this week and first triple.

Dazzling debut: Andres Gimenez made quite an impression in his Fireflies’ debut Saturday. The 18-year-old shortstop homered in his first at-bat and finished with two hits and an RBI.

Gimenez, who is from Venezuela, was signed as a 16-year-old by the Mets in 2015 and received a $1.2 million signing bonus. He was ranked as the No. 2 international prospect by Baseball America and spent last year playing in the Mets’ Dominican Summer League.

Offense comes to life: Columbia lost three of four to Hickory over the weekend, but it wasn’t because of lack of offense. The Fireflies scored 33 runs and had 43 three hits.

Columbia also hit six homers in the series which equaled its total going into the four games.

Paez putting up the RBI: Former Coastal Carolina standout Michael Paez has driven in nine runs over his last 10 games, including four on Sunday to push his RBI total to 18 on the season. He is third in the South Atlantic League in RBI.

First to five: Jordan Humphries became the first pitcher in the South Atlantic League and all of the minor leagues to score five victories with a win Sunday.

Humphries is 5-0 with a 1.71 ERA with 40 strikeouts in 31  2/3 innings pitched.

Teammate Merandy Gonzalez can join him in the five-win club when he pitches this week. Gonzalez hasn’t allowed a run in 28  1/3 innings this season.

This week’s schedule: The Fireflies will host Delmarva for a three-game series beginning Tuesday. Wednesday’s game is an 11:05 a.m. start. They will finish the week with a four-game series against Lakewood on Thursday. On Saturday, it will be Star Wars night at the ballpark.

Tim Tebow’s statistics

AB

R

H

 HR

RBI

Avg.

Week

21

6

6

0

0

.286

Season

76

11

18

2

9

.237

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