MIAMI - In the Florida Marlins clubhouse, players watched the clock as the final seconds ticked toward Thursday’s 4 p.m. trading deadline.
Center fielder Cody Ross counted it down: “Three. Two. One. Yes!” He clapped, then gave teammate Jeremy Hermida a hug.
Hermida stayed with the Marlins because negotiations to acquire slugger Manny Ramirez from the Boston Red Sox fell through. Florida players liked the idea of adding Ramirez, but they also like their young, surprising team the way it is — only 1½ games out of the NL East lead going into Thursday night’s game against Colorado.
“I’m ecstatic to still be here,” Hermida said. “The chemistry here is something I enjoy.”
Reports had Hermida going to Pittsburgh in a three-way deal that would have sent outfielder Jason Bay from the Pirates to the Red Sox, and Ramirez to the Marlins. Prospects and money were also part of the negotiations.
Ramirez instead went to the Los Angeles Dodgers in a three-team trade that sent Bay to Boston.
Marlins president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest declined to talk about negotiations for Ramirez, but he confirmed the team sought to upgrade.
“I’m a little bit disappointed,” Beinfest said. “We would have liked to have done more.
“We stayed on the phone throughout the day looking at a number of things to try to help the ballclub. These guys deserve to be helped. They’ve done a great job. They’ve put themselves in contention.”
The only trade Florida made was for left-handed reliever Arthur Rhodes, acquired from the Seattle Mariners for minor league right-hander Gaby Hernandez.
A rumored deal sending first baseman Mike Jacobs to San Francisco for catcher Bengie Molina failed to materialize.
Talk of adding a $20 million left fielder in Ramirez was surprising because the Florida’s payroll is only $22 million, by far the smallest in baseball. But Jacobs said the Marlins have the talent to stay in contention.
“We’ve been winning,” he said. “If people aren’t believing in us yet, they haven’t been watching baseball.”
NEW YORK (AP) - Yankees fans showed Don Mattingly the love from the moment he took the lineup card to home plate Wednesday. Hiroki Kuroda, though, wasn't feeling nostalgic when facing his old team.
Message for Manny
July 31: Matty just being Matty has one thing to say to Manny Ramirez.
Taking a look at some of the greatest catchers off all time.
The Art of the Deadline Deal
NBCSports.com takes a look at memorable trades made under pressure.