Nolasco's agent: Sides aren't at a stalemate

Nolasco's agent: Sides aren't at a stalemate

MIAMI -- All things considered, Ricky Nolasco's preference is to remain with the Marlins and be a part of the franchise's future in its new ballpark.

For that to happen, the 28-year-old right-hander would likely have to agree to a multiyear contract.

The Marlins and Nolasco's agent, Matt Sosnick, have been in talks for months, and thus far the sides have yet to come to terms on a deal.

On Saturday, it was reported by that there is a stalemate in the negotiations.

But Sosnick told on Saturday that Nolasco would like to remain in Florida and he is hopeful eventually an agreement will be reached.

"Ricky is in that top echelon of top of the rotation pitchers," Sosnick said. "There are very few guys like that in the league, and he wants to be compensated as such. He's a very good pitcher. He's not even in the prime of his career yet.

"Any reports that say we're way off are not true. We're not way off. We're still exchanging ideas. There absolutely is no stalemate. There is no impasse or anything like that. His choice is to stay in Florida and pitch for the Marlins over the long haul."

If a multiyear contract isn't reached, Nolasco still has two more years remaining in arbitration. So there is a chance the Marlins could sign him to a one-year contract for 2011 and '12, which is the first season in the new ballpark.

Under that scenario, Nolasco would qualify for free agency in 2013.

Nolasco, who turned 28 on Dec. 13, is coming off a 14-9 season with a 4.51 ERA. In 157 2/3 innings, he struck out 147 and walked 33. He was shut down in September due to a torn meniscus in his right knee.

Nolasco had the tear surgically repaired, and he is expected to be at full strength at the start of Spring Training.

In his five-year career with Florida, Nolasco is 54-39 with a 4.45 ERA. He is second in Marlins' history in wins.

If Nolasco wins 14 games in 2011, he would match Dontrelle Willis' franchise mark of 68.

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.