Former Mets and Rangers skipper Bobby Valentine is no longer being considered for the Marlins' managerial vacancy, according to a Major League Baseball source.

Valentine had been viewed as the top candidate for the job since Fredi Gonzalez was fired last week, and sources told and other outlets on Friday that the longtime friend of Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria would indeed be hired. ESPN, Valentine's employer for the past several months, reported that the Marlins were expected to make a four-year offer to him.

But that same day, a person familiar with the search told The Associated Press that an interview between Valentine and the Marlins scheduled for Friday had been put on hold.

Why negotiations between Valentine and the team ended was not immediately known. He has a long relationship with Loria, having managed the Rangers when Loria owned that franchise's Triple-A affiliate. Valentine has a record in the majors of 1,117-1,072, and ended a six-year run as manager of the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan's Pacific League in 2009.

Interim manager Edwin Rodriguez, who was manager of Florida's Triple-A team in New Orleans until Gonzalez's dismissal, and Marlins outfield coach Bo Porter have both interviewed for the Florida vacancy.

Gonzalez, the franchise's all-time victory leader, was fired last Wednesday. Loria expected his team to be a playoff contender this season, but Florida has been around .500 for much of the first half. After Sunday's 4-2 loss to the Padress -- their fourth straight -- they were 35-40 and 8½ games behind the first-place Braves in the National League East.

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