Uggla says Marlins broke off contract talks

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MIAMI (AP) - Dan Uggla says he still hopes to reach an agreement on a long-term contract with the Florida Marlins, even though they’ve broken off negotiations.

The second baseman spoke about the status of those talks during a conference call Thursday after he received his first Silver Slugger Award.

“It has been the Marlins‘ choice to stop negotiations,” he said. “My team is still wanting to negotiate. My career has been in Florida, and I want to stay in Florida.”

The Marlins declined to comment. Uggla, who made $7.8 million this year, is eligible for salary arbitration before qualifying for free agency after the 2011 season.

Uggla had 33 homers, 105 RBIs and a .287 average in 2010, all career highs.

“This year I really started putting it together and not wasting as many at-bats as in the past,” he said. “The power has always been there, but the average has been spotty.”

A .263 career hitter, Uggla has at least 27 homers and 88 RBIs each of the past five seasons, all with the Marlins.

Because of the team’s tight budget, he has seen many teammates come and go _ including close friend Cody Ross, who was claimed on waivers in late August by the San Francisco Giants and helped them win the World Series.

“If I’m not going to be playing in it, then he is the person I would want to watch playing in the World Series,” Uggla said. “To see him do what he did in the postseason and then the climax of winning the World Series, I couldn’t have been more happy for anybody.”

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