December 05, 2014

MIAMI (AP) The Miami Marlins' top baseball executive says it's too early to tell whether the team will be able to reach agreements with several of their young players who have been offered long-term contracts.

The offers came after the Marlins sealed a record $325 million, 13-year deal with slugger Giancarlo Stanton last month. The Marlins seek more modest multiyear agreements with right-hander Jose Fernandez, left fielder Christian Yelich, shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria and center fielder Marcell Ozuna.

None is yet eligible for arbitration.

''They know they're young in their careers, so I don't think there's any urgency,'' president of baseball operations Mike Hill said Friday. ''It's more of an education process as we go through it. If we can gain momentum and make something happen, we'll all be pleased with it. At a minimum we know at this point they're all under control for many, many years to come.''

While those negotiations are ongoing, Hill and his staff are preparing for the winter meetings next week in San Diego, where they'll be shopping for a first baseman and starting pitcher.

''I don't think one is more pressing than the other,'' Hill said. ''We're working on both in lockstep.''

The team is prepared to dig into its surplus of pitching to make a trade, he said.

The Marlins gave Derek Jeter a tour of their ballpark this week, but he won't be playing in Miami. The retired shortstop didn't get a chance to see much of the park when the Yankees played there shortly after it was completed in 2012.

''He said all he saw was the clubhouse,'' Hill said. ''So he got a full tour of every inch of the building. ... It was nice. We congratulated him on a great career and asked him if he had any pinch hits left in him.''

Jeter's visit stirred speculation he might be interested in buying part of the team. Owner Jeffrey Loria has repeatedly said he's not selling the Marlins.

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