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Valentine: "Process Going to Take Longer Than Expected"

    Don't expect the Marlins to name a manager tonight. And an announcement might not come for several days. While the Marlins planned to speak with Bobby Valentine by phone on Friday, they have not had a formal interview with him or met with him in person.

   "The process is going to take longer than expected, and I expect that the first interview will take place over the phone," Valentine told Hearst Newspapers in Connecticut.

   In a text message to the Miami Herald, Valentine said his interview "would be a phoner."

   Only Bo Porter interviewed in person on Friday for the vacancy. Still, Valentine is expected to land the job officially at some point. There is some sentiment within the organization to keep interim manager Edwin Rodriguez on board through the upcoming Puerto Rico series that starts Monday in San Juan.

   SI.com reported earlier on Friday that the Marlins had worked out a "tentative" deal for Valentine, but lips are sealed on the Marlins. Meanwhile, Rodriguez continues to run the show from the dugout as the Marlins prepare to open a three-game weekend series against the San Diego Padres. There's been some speculation that the Marlins might allow Rodriguez, a native of Puerto Rico, to manage in San Juan. But I've also been told that the team's top priority is putting a permanent manager in place as quickly as possible, so it remains unclear when they'll push the button.

    All signs continue to point to Valentine as that person.

    Porter, the third-base coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks, was interviewed at Sun LIfe Stadium earlier in the day Friday.

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John Dorschner

One reason why Valentine might hesitate -- Marlins batters falter in the clutch. After watching a dreary game Sunday (except for Anibal's wonderful pitching, I went home and looked up on ESPN.go.com how the Marlins did with runners in scoring position and two outs. On the 30 teams, they rank 29th -- .208 batting average. They just don't come through.

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