Pitcher who allowed Tim Tebow's home run tweets funny response

·Yahoo Sports Contributor

St. Louis Cardinals prospect John Kilichowski will forever be the answer to a trivia question no one thought would exist even two months ago. During Wednesday’s instructional league game against the New York Mets, he was the pitcher who allowed a home run to Tim Tebow in Tebow’s first ever professional at-bat.

On the first pitch he saw, Tebow took a high-and-outside fastball from Kilichowski and basically tomahawked it over the fence in left-center field. It was an impressive feat of strength that left Tebow undeniably giddy as he sprinted around the bases and talked to the media after the game.

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“It’s just fun,” Tebow said. “It feels good to hit a home run. Your first game, you want to win. You’re with all your teammates. The reception was fun, too.”

Tim Tebow homered off John Kilichowski in his first professional at-bat in the instructional league. (AP/Vanderbilt)
Tim Tebow homered off John Kilichowski in his first professional at-bat in the instructional league. (AP/Vanderbilt)

That’s one side of the story. On the other side, there’s a pitcher whose first claim to fame in baseball is as a footnote in Tim Tebow’s already well established legacy. For some, that reality might be a crushing blow to their ego. Not Kilichowski though. He’s taking the whole thing in stride, even taking to Twitter to joke about the event.

Truth be told, a lot of hitters probably would take that first pitch they saw just to get a feeling for the opposing pitcher. It’s not far-fetched to believe Kilichowski was expecting that to happen with Tebow. But even if he was, that wasn’t a typical grooved fastball to get ahead in the count.

Tebow beat him, Kilichowski knows it and there’s nothing he can do but own it.

Kilichowski, 22, was the Cardinals’ 11th-round pick in 2016. He comes out of the Vanderbilt program, which has produced a lot of major-league talent over the past ten years. It’s also a school Tebow did his share of damage against on the college gridiron at the University of Florida.

Given the Cardinals history of drafting wisely, developing players and pushing them to reach their potential, there’s a pretty good chance Wednesday’s home run won’t be the moment that defines Kilichowski’s baseball career. But even if it does, his response under these unique circumstances suggests he has the mindset to deal with it.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!