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Mets’ Tim Tebow hits 9 homers in batting practice

New York Mets outfielder and former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow leaves a news conference at the baseball teams spring training facility in Port St. Lucie, Florida, on Monday. (John Bazemore / Associated Press)
New York Mets outfielder and former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow leaves a news conference at the baseball teams spring training facility in Port St. Lucie, Florida, on Monday. (John Bazemore / Associated Press)

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. – Tim Tebow quickly got into the swing of spring training, hitting nine home runs in batting practice Monday during his first workout with the New York Mets.

The former Heisman Trophy winner and NFL quarterback is hoping to make to the majors as an outfielder. He signed a minor league contract last September.

The 29-year-old Tebow played in the Arizona Fall League, struggling against top prospects from other teams. He hit .194 and struck out 20 times in 62 at-bats for the Scottsdale Scorpions.

“It’s so much about how you’re able to handle things mentally, and that’s not just the highs, it’s also the lows,” the lefty hitter said.

“Baseball can really exploit that if you’re not ready for it – to be ready for the droughts and be able to handle the highs and lows. I think I was 0 for my first 13 (in Arizona), so I was like, ‘OK, that’s going to happen.’ But I’m going to bounce back, and I think I was able to do that,” he said.

Tebow said similar poor results as a member of the New York Jets in 2012 also were part of a learning process.

“I’m grateful for the highs there – which weren’t really many – but for a lot of the lows,” said Tebow, who was released after one season with the Jets in which he threw just eight passes and ran 32 times.

“It was not necessarily the most fun situation, but there were so many things I learned. Everything happens for a reason; that situation happened for a reason. I learned from it. I’m grateful for it. I can honestly say that,” he said.

Monday’s spring training results

Tigers 10, Braves 7: Miguel Cabrera doubled, singled and drove in a run for Detroit. Tigers starter Jordan Zimmermann gave up a run in two innings.

R.A. Dickey, in his Braves debut, allowed two runs on two hits over two innings. The former N.L. Cy Young winner pitched for Toronto last year, then signed with Atlanta.

Dansby Swanson got three hits and scored three times for Atlanta. Freddie Freeman had two hits and drove in three runs.

Cardinals (split squad) 5, Nationals 4: Lance Lynn, out of the majors last year after Tommy John surgery, pitched two innings in his spring debut for St. Louis, allowing four hits and one earned run.

Trea Turner homered for Washington. He’s beginning what’s expected to be his first full season in the big leagues as a full-time shortstop after spending last year in center field and at second base.

Yankees 4, Orioles 1: All-Star third baseman Manny Machado started at shortstop for Baltimore in place of J.J. Hardy, who’s expected to be out until mid-March with back trouble.

Vidal Nuno, acquired this month from the Dodgers, pitched two scoreless innings in relief for the Orioles.

Aaron Judge tripled and reached base three times for New York.

Twins 9, Marlins 6: Byung-ho Park hit a two-run homer, his second shot since Minnesota dropped him from its 40-man roster earlier this month.

Twins starter Ervin Santana struck out two in two scoreless innings. He was suspended 80 games last season for violating Major League Baseball’s drug policy.

Tyler Moore homered for Miami. Marlins starter Jose Urena gave up two runs in an inning.

Rays 7, Phillies 2: Makiel Franco hit his third home run this spring for Philadelphia and added an RBI single.

Corey Dickerson hit a two-run homer for Tampa Bay and scored twice.

Cardinals (ss) 7, Red Sox 2: St. Louis starter Michael Wacha allowed four hits and an unearned run in two innings. Jose Martinez hit two home runs and drove in four.

Xander Bogaerts and Mitch Moreland each got two hits for Boston.

Pirates 2, Blue Jays 1: Toronto starter Marcus Stroman worked two perfect innings, striking out three. Jose Bautista singled home the Blue Jays’ run.

Pirates catcher Jacob Stallings, son of Pitt basketball coach Kevin Stallings, had two hits.

Astros 5, Mets 2: Asdrubal Cabrera and Wilmer Flores homered for the Mets. Houston scored four times in the ninth off veteran Tom Gorzelanny on four hits and three walks.

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