After a miserable loss to the NewEngland Patriots, Tim Tebow had another long conversation with God. Let’slisten in.
Tim Tebow: But I just don’tunderstand …
God: Timmy, you are notsupposed to understand. Besides, I can’t always help you. You have to learn todo things yourself if you want to truly value your human existence.
Tim: But don’t you remember thelast time you didn’t help me?
God: Yes, Tim. I remember.And now you enjoy winning more than when I just helped you win, right?
Tim: (thinking) Oh, wow, you’re right!
God: (messing with Tim a bit) You say that as though you’re surprised.
Tim: (frantic and panicked) No, no, no. I mean … I was just trying tosay …
God: (laughing and enjoying this a bit too much) I was just kidding,Tim. You know, like the time I told all those people who wrote the Bible thatabstinence was a good idea. It was just a joke.
God: (now laughing with a snort at the end) Calm down, Tim. Anyway, wehave other important matters to discuss.
Tim: But you were justkidding about kidding about the abstinence thing, right?
God: Tim, we need to focushere. Besides, remember our deal. Anyway, there’s going to be another flood.
Tim: But … Another flood?Like a Noah-type flood?
God: Yes, except we’ll savemore people this time. But I need you to build the arks and gather the people.
Tim: I have to gather people onto the arks? How am I going todo that? They’ll all think I’m crazy.
God: (pauses and chuckles to himself) You’ll find a way, Tim. Now, Ineed three arks. One is for the animals, just like last time. The second is forimportant people in the world – you get to choose, but just make sure they are“good” people and not just world leaders or whatever. The last is for yourfamily, general good people, and I’ll need 2 baseball players from each MLBteam.
Tim: Baseball players?
God: Yes, baseball is myfavorite sport, and if there are 60 players, then there will be plenty ofplayers to keep me entertained while you rebuild society.
Tim: Baseball is yourfavorite sport? Not football?
God: Yeah. Plus, it takestoo many football players to play a game (which is a waste of ark space), youneed a flat space for basketball (not feasible), ice for hockey (you need tosettle in warmer climates), and soccer players are prima donnas who probablyexpect the ark to be a five-star hotel.
Tim: What two players do youwant from each team?
God: The best.
Tim: Well, who are they? Howam I supposed to know?
God: Head to Louisville,Kentucky after your season is over. You’ll know who you need to see.
After the Broncos get bounced intheir first playoff game, Tebow sets sail for Louisville, unsure of what or whohe will find. All he knows is that God sent him on this very important mission,and he can’t fail. Arriving in Louisville, Tim has no idea where to go, but heis hungry and decides to head to Famous Dave’s.
Hostess: How many sir? (looks up and is a bit startled)
Tim: (incognito) Just me. I brought abook.
Hostess: (startled but back under control; now justconfused as hell) Okay, follow me.
Sitting at a table nearby …
Famous Sharon: That’s a coolshirt. What does it mean?
Mark Smith: (awkwardly laughs as he realizes that thisis the crucial moment wherein this girl will understand and be interested, andthus his future wife, or will be confused and/or uninterested, and thus likeevery other person on the planet) *explanation of t-shirt* (you’ve been spared the actual explanation asit neither furthers the plot nor does it see our hero meet the woman of hisdreams, shocker I know; you just need to know it was explained and in sultrytones)
Famous Sharon: Oh … cool. (see?)
Tim: (to Mark) Excuse me, maybe you’re the one who’s supposed to helpme.
Mark: (weirded out a little by the phrasing and the imposing presence) Withwhat exactly?
Tim: (awkwardly, secretively, and yet surprisingly quickly Tim moves over toMark’s table) Sorry about that. (looksaround) Do you mind? (points at emptyseat next to Mark; meanwhile, his mother is completely freaked out) My nameis Tim Tebow. (reason Tim Tebow is incognito)
Mark: (adjusting to the shocking news and the nearing crowd of women) Oh,hi. Wow. Uh, what can I help you with?
Tim: (also noting the enclosing group of psychotic women) Damn it. Thishappens everywhere I go, but I couldn’t touch them if I wanted to. I need aplace to hide.
Mark: Sure, uh, my house isnearby.
Tim bowls through the women andgets Mark and his mother safely to the parking lot and to their cars. Theydrive to the Bat Cave … okay Mark’s mother’s basement, where Tim tries toexplain the situation.
Mark: This sounds insane.You realize that, right?
Tim: I know. Let’s justconsider this to be you teaching me about baseball while disclosing who thebest 2 players on each team are.
Mark: Okay, I suppose Kentuckyowes you one.
Tim: Hey, I gave UK itsshare of beatings.
Mark: They’re UK. You’resupposed to kill them. UK knocked you senseless.
Tim: (clearly annoyed and just wanting to move on) Can we just getstarted?
Mark: Sure. I’m guessingthat God would theoretically also want youngish players in order to beentertained longer?
Mark: Alright, so how do wewant to do this?
Mark: (being a dick and obviously not believing Tim one iota) By cityname or mascot?
Tim: For goodness sakes …city name.
Mark: Wait, why are we doingthis by team? Wouldn’t it be better to simply get the 60 best players?
Tim: DON’T QUESTION THE WILLOF GOD! (actions looked like this)
Mark: (visibly shaken) …
Tim: (coughs) Sorry. I, uh, got a little carried away. I’m not sure ofthe specific reason, but that’s what he said. I guess it keeps up with thespecies thing.
Mark: (recovering) Okay, well let’s begin with Arizona. Justin Upton’sthe easy choice. Chris Young is also pretty good, but we’ll probably get somecenter fielders later. Miguel Montero is also a nice choice and is a catcher,which might be hard to find, but he’s getting a little older. Dan Hudson andIan Kennedy are essentially equal, but Hudson’s 3 years younger. So let’s goUpton and Hudson.
Tim: But didn’t Kennedy getCy Young votes? He won 21 times.
Mark: (trying to remain calm) Tim, we don’t have time to discuss theproblem with that, but I’ll leave it at the offense and defense also playingsignificant parts in winning the game. The pitcher isn’t the only one andshouldn’t get sole credit for the victory.
Tim: Huh, so I guessbaseball and football are different that way.
Mark: (opens mouth to say something before remembering that Tim Tebow could squashhim into mashed peas, which doesn’t sound appetizing to Mark for severalreasons but most notably his dislike of peas) Let’s just move on, shall we?
Tim: Okay, Atlanta’s up.
Mark: Brian McCann is one ofthe catchers I was thinking about, and as the best player on the team, we’llput him in. Let’s also put Heyward in as he’s really young and talented, eventhough he had a sort of rough season last year.
Tim: Okay, Baltimore?
Mark: Let’s rattle anothercatcher off the list with Matt Wieters. Uh … JJ Hardy is probably the next-bestplayer on the team, though he’ll be 29 this season. All of the pitchers arepretty young, but they aren’t exactly “great”, either. So, let’s say Wietersand Hardy for the time being.
Tim: Next up is Boston.
Mark: Lots of good choiceshere. Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia, however, would probably be my picks.Adrian Gonzalez is nice, but I imagine we’ll pick up Joey Votto and othersalong the way. Jon Lester is the other one I’d like to have, but God, in hisinfinite wisdom, (forsaking safety for ajab at Tebow) decided that two players from each team was the way to go,for whatever reason.
Tim: It’s not for you toquestion God.
Mark: Well, then who’s isit? God’s kind of the high guy on the totem pole, so it’s not exactly anyone’s“job” to question him.
Tim: God’s the exception.He’s God, so no one needs to question him.
Mark: (pondering but deciding that there’s not a particularly good answer tothe question that doesn’t involve an entirely too deep discussion on theology) Isuppose. Who’s next?
Tim: Chicago, and the Cubs,I guess, because that comes before White Sox.
Mark: So the tie-breaker isthe mascot, and not the league?
Tim: (losing some patience and really starting to wonder if this is the guyGod really wanted him to talk to) Let’s just say yes and move on, shall we?
Mark: (remembering that Tebow is a hunk-a-hunk-a burning love and the wholemashed peas thing) I think this one is fairly easy. Starlin Castro and MattGarza. The White Sox are a little more difficult. Alexei Ramirez is an easychoice, but picking between John Danks and Gavin Floyd is more difficult. Dankis two years younger, though, so let’s go with him.
Mark: Oof, that’s a hardone. Joey Votto has to go in there, but then you have Brandon Phillips, MatLatos, Jay Bruce, Drew Stubbs, and Aroldis Chapman. Phillips will be 30, solet’s cut him off the list, though I don’t like the feeling of that. I guessI’ll go Latos, but lots of solid choices there.
Tim: I think Cleveland isnext.
Mark: Let’s start withCarlos Santana, and I’ll take Shin-Soo Choo next. Asdrubal Cabrera is a nicechoice, but we already have 3 shortstops and no Tulo or Reyes. And JustinMasterson has pitched pretty well, but I’ll guess that we’ll get enoughpitchers by the end.
Tim: Choo, even with theDUI?
Mark: Doesn’t sound likecars are going to be a problem in the near future.
Tim: But do we want thefuture of the world coming from a guy who drove drunk?
Mark: You’re gathering abunch of professional athletes together, and God didn’t say anything abouttheir character. I’m guessing some of the guys I have listed and will list arecapable of similar. On a somewhat related note, are you making sure to taketons of women with the rest of your allotment?
Tim: (in despair and looking off to the distance) I try not think aboutwomen very much.
Mark: Speaking of which …
Tim: (as though he’s been asked a million times) Please don’t ask.Rockies?
Mark: (starting to feel a little bad for the guy) Troy Tulowitzki andCarlos Gonzalez.
Mark: Miguel Cabrera, nowyou have two DUI guys, and Justin Verlander. You know this seems a little too“luck of the draw”.
Tim: What do you mean?
Mark: Well, all of thiscomes down to what team a player happens to be on. It’s like the All-Star Gamewhere every team has to be represented or the playoffs where each division getsa team. You aren’t necessarily getting the best players.
Tim: I don’t think that’snecessarily God’s point.
Mark: (kind of intrigued but also skeptical) Go on.
Tim: The point is that Godwants us to be ever thankful for the things we get. If he took the bestplayers, they would feel entitled. Realizing that you’ve been sort of randomlypicked makes you understand how lucky you are, and knowing that, you might playharder and better knowing it is forGod. I know that now, which is why I do what I do, and now these players wouldknow. We get a lot of things by luck, which should make us more thankful forwhat we have.
Mark: (kind of impressed by the line of thinking) Fair enough, I guess.Let’s see. (trying to change the subject)Who’s next? Florida? Rough. Hmm, Mike Stanton, Jose Reyes, and Hanley Ramirezwould be nice choices, and Josh Johnson would have been if not for the shouldersurgery. Would Hanley move to third for God?
Tim: If that’s a seriousquestion and you have other choices …
Mark: Okay then, Stanton andReyes it is. Who’s next?
Mark: Jesus Christ …
Tim: (as intimidating as he can) Ahem.
Mark: Oops, sorry. Oldhabits and all. He he (awkward silence).Bud Norris and Jordan Lyles are about to be really thankful.
Tim: Kansas City?
Mark: Alex Gordon can go in,but we might move him back to third because we just aren’t getting any ofthose. And I suppose Eric Hosmer, but we could also go Mike Moustakas. Butlet’s go Gordon and Hosmer, thinking Gordon could play third about as well asMoustakas. Is that legal?
Mark: Next is, let’s see, K… L, so Los Angeles, and we’re going by mascot, so Angels? Dan Haren’s might bea bit over 30, but he’s really, really good. And Jered Weaver’s nearing 30, buthe’s still really, really good. And then they have Pujols now, and he’s really,really good. I’d have to go with Weaver and Pujols, but it hurts me to leaveHaren off. (remembering something elseweird about the situation) Wait, I’m not the only one you’re talking to, amI? We never really discussed why you’re talking to me, of all people.
Tim: (unsure) Well, um, I don’t know, honestly. God told me to come toLouisville, so here I am. Maybe there’s someone else. Maybe not.
Mark: So you’re telling meI’m in control of all their destinies?
Tim: Kind of.
Mark: (getting uncomfortable even though he’s still not sure if he believesTim or not, but why else is he here?) That’s, uh, okay, let’s try not tothink about that.
Mark: Matt Kemp and ClaytonKershaw. I guess Milwaukee’s next. Ryan Braun and Zack Greinke? Rickie Weeksmight be a nice second base addition, though. Yeah, let’s do that. Braun andWeeks.
Tim: The Twins are next.
Mark: Man, beginning of2010, this would have been easy. Denard Span and Joe Mauer? I’d like Liriano tobe there, but I don’t know what happened last year. Who’s next?
Tim: Um (looking at list),Mets.
Mark: David Wright shouldgo, but picking between Daniel Murphy and Jonathan Niese is a bit harder. I’dprobably feel better going Murphy/Greinke than Weeks/Niese, but I don’t know.Nah, let’s go Wright and Niese. Weeks is a legit second baseman, and Niese is stilla solid pitcher. I guess that means the Yankees are next.
Tim: Yep. Can we keep Jeter?
Mark: You heard about thegift baskets for his one-night stand, right?
Tim: Really? Hmm, okay, whothen?
Mark: Three-way battlebetween CC, Granderson, and Cano. Cano and CC fit more with positions that weneed, so let’s go with them. Going back to the women thing. Do the players getto bring their wives and kids?
Tim: The people on theoriginal ark did, so I suppose they will as well. Might be difficult to get themto buy in otherwise.
Mark: Okay. Uh, Athletics?Well, I guess Jemile can join his brother, and Brandon McCarthy is pretty goodwhile also seemingly like a good guy on Twitter. Who knew his foray into socialmedia would save his life? But I suppose it didn’t help Brandon Phillips. Luckof the draw.
Mark: Cliff Lee and RoyHalladay are awesome, but with Shane Victorino and Cole Hamels, there are stillgood, young players on the team that can go instead.
Tim: Okay, Pirates are upnext.
Mark: Andrew McCutchen and,for a lack of better options, Gerrit Cole. He’s only a prospect, but he’sreally talented and shouldn’t take long to get to the majors anyway … Quickquestion, do I get saved in all this?
Tim: You know, I hadn’treally thought about it. (uncomfortablebecause he doesn’t exactly want to promise Mark a spot if he doesn’t have one) Letme pray real quick. (praysfor a few moments) Yes.
Mark: (momentarily relieved before realizing all the people that won’t, butthen he remembers that Tebow is probably nuts and isn’t one of the horsemen ofthe Apocalypse … or ishe?) Cool. Um, Padres are next. Chase Headley and Cory Luebke fillslots pretty well. I hate to leave Maybin at home, but we already have a lot ofoutfielders.
Tim: Alright, Giants are up.
Mark: Gotta be Lincecum andPosey. That’s, what, five catchers, but you need lots of those. Seattle’s next.Felix Hernandez and Michael Pineda. Always need more pitchers, though I’m alittle sad not to include Ackley.
Mark: Adam Wainwright iscoming off of surgery, but there shouldn’t be any reason he doesn’t performwell moving forward. Chris Carpenter and Matt Holliday might be a little old,with Holliday being in an unneeded position. Yadier Molina would be fun to haveas another catcher, though that’s six now. Tough position, though.
Tim: Almost there. Tampa,Texas, Toronto, and Washington.
Mark: Tampa’s needs to haveLongoria, and I guess I’ll go David Price, even though Matt Moore might end upbetter. For Texas, I’ll say Kinsler and Darvish, though we don’t necessarilyknow how well he’ll do. Neftali Feliz could be awesome in a starter’s spot, andAdrian Beltre is legitimately awesome but a little old. I bet Darvish didn’t knowthat the bid would save his life. Imagine if he had waited another year.
Tim: And Toronto andWashington.
Mark: I suppose Bautista isa must-have, and I’ll take Brandon Morrow over Ricky Romero, though notincluding Brett Lawrie seems like a shame. And for Washington, I’ll takeStrasburg and Ryan Zimmerman just to avoid your worries about Harper and hisissues, though I think it’s just maturity.
Tim: Thatmustache doesn’t have a place in the future, either. (laughs)
Mark: Says the man whoshaved his head likea friar.
Tim: Hey, Harper’s was achoice. Mine was part of a hazing.
Mark: Well, I guess that’sit, huh?
Tim: Yeah, I guess so.
Mark: So should I, uh, meetyou somewhere at some time? (laughsbecause he’s not exactly how sure he should be about all this; on one hand, TimTebow is in his mother’s basement, but on the other hand, this is insane andhe’s still dressed like Leonidas from 300)
Tim: (all of this becoming quite real to Tim as well) You know, I’ll getyour number, and I’ll call you to set up plans.
Mark: (jokingly but with a little pain) I’ve heard that before.
Tim: (laughs) I will definitely call you. The Big Guy won’t exactly letme not follow through on a promise like this.
Mark: Yeah, probably not.Well, I guess you need to get to work, huh? Do you know how to build a boat?
Tim: They said (breaks into this). Now, they sayI can’t build a boat. I’ve proven them wrong before, and I’ll do it again.
Mark: Okay, something’s beenbothering me about that. Who said you couldn’t play QB in high school orcollege? Weren’t you a top recruit? I’ll go along with the first-round pick andNFL stuff, but the other stuff seems like a lie.
Tim: (shifts uncomfortably) We all got a little carried away with that,but it’s more for inspiration than a biography.
Mark: Uh huh, well with theworld ending pretty soon for most people, I guess we’ll let that slide.
Tim: You don’t believe me,do you? That there’s going to be a flood?
Mark: (chuckles) Not really, but I have to say this has been the weirdestday of my life, by far.
Tim says good-bye to Mark and hismother, and he leaves, heading back to Denver I guess.
Mom: Now, who was that?
Mark: Football player.
Mom: Oh, then who cares?
I imagine you probably had a hard time keeping up with the names, so here’s who is in the ark.