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April 30, 2010
SPARTANBURG, S.C. - Senior catcher Jimmy Tanner is one of four players that played during the Spartans final year of D-II play. Tanner, along with teammates Matt Branham, Brian Dempsey and Tyler Oliver were freshman on the 2007 squad that finished 34-25 and 15-15 in the final year as members of the Peach Belt Conference.
Tanner has improved his batting average each season in a Spartan uniform. He batted .270 as a freshman and batted .304 as a sophomore. The last two seasons, Tanner has hit over .350, as he finished with a .354 average a season ago and currently owns an average of .382 in 2010.
Tanner recently became the all-time hits leader and is continuing to increase his total. In the three-game conference series against Campbell (4/16-17), the Fayetteville, Ga., native tallied six hits. In the final game of the series, Tanner belted a three-run home run that tied the record of 241 held by John Caddell (2004-07) and helped lead the Spartans to a series victory over the Camels.
The following Tuesday, Tanner set the record with a single to left field in the fifth inning in the game at South Carolina. Since setting the record, he has recorded six more hits and sits just two hits shy of a career total of 250.
Tanner recently talked with Alex Edwards of upstatespartans.com to talk about his time in Spartanburg as well as his plans for the future.
You recently became the all-time hits leader with your fifth-inning single in the game at South Carolina. Since then you have added six more hits and sit just two hits shy of 250 for your career. How special is it for you to accomplish something that no other player has?
With this being your final season as a Spartan, what are your plans after graduation?
Have you always been a catcher or did you play other positions growing up?
You have played all four seasons under the direction of head coach Matt Fincher, how would you describe his personality and coaching style?
What has been your most memorable moment as a student-athlete here at Upstate?
You were a freshman during the team's final year of D-II play, what is the biggest difference between the D-I and D-II levels?
Who is your favorite professional baseball player and team? Why?
What advice would you give to a younger player that desires to play collegiate baseball?
Are there any other sports that you enjoy watching or playing?
If you could play one game at a major league park, where would you want to play and why?