Tim Tebow is inching closer to the big leagues.

When the minor league season starts next week, the New York Mets are expected to assign Tebow to their Double-A affiliate, the Binghamton Rumble Ponies. (Yes, the Rumble Ponies.)

Last year, in his first season as a baseball player, Tebow hit .226/.309/.347 with eight home runs in 126 Single-A games. He played 64 games in Low Class-A and 62 games in High Class-A. Tebow went 1 for 18 (.056) with 11 strikeouts while battling a minor ankle issue this spring.

If last year is any template, Tebow could spend 60-something games at Double-A this season before moving up to Triple-A. And if that does happen, it is not out of the question the Mets could bring him up as a September call-up. There are other considerations here (the 40-man roster, performance, etc.), but things are trending in that direction.

It's worth noting the Rumble Ponies are independently owned and operated. Tebow sold lots of tickets last year -- ESPN's Darren Rovell reported games with Tebow saw thousands more tickets sold than average -- and all that extra revenue will go to the team's owners, not the Mets. The Mets do own their High-A affiliate, so they pocketed the Tebow revenue last year.