Tankerslery is Good to Go

Tankersley is ready for spring training
.

The departure of former Florida Marlins closer Joe Borowski to the Cleveland Indians via free agency has opened a door for Vicksburg's Taylor Tankersley as potentially the new Marlins' closer in 2007.

Tankersley, however, said by phone from the Marlins' spring training facility in Jupiter, Fla., that it's just a chance to find a role on the team.

"It gets me an opening to stay on a big league team," Tankersley said. "If they think I can fill that role as closer, that's great. It's an opportunity I would love to have.

"If they want to bring me in as a lefty-on-lefty or as a set up guy like last year, that's fine. It doesn't matter to me. I just want to be on a big league team."

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Tankersley is spending his off-season training in Jupiter.

"Some of the players live here, but when I go in to train, I'm pretty much on my own. Personally, I can get more out of my arm with this type of weather. That's why I live by the complex."

Tankersley is eagerly looking toward the 2007 season, when he feels Florida will be a contender in the National League East with the defending champion Mets and rising Phillies.

"We have a chance to be a winning ball club. We have a very good club coming back and I love our chances," Tankersley said. "I know the Mets are really good and the Phillies are good, but our starting pitching is one of the best in the league. I like our staff."

I like the staff too.  It is good to hear the boy is furthering his craft this off-season.  The Marlins may have a couple of players who are spending their off-season "working out" but their pursuits have little to with baseball.

I still don't think Tank will be first in line for the closer's role but that doesn't mean he won't end up there.

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