Uribe remains option at third

MIAMI — Free agent signings have already filled three positions for the Marlins. Could the club go that path to plug in another piece?

Miami continues to have interest in Juan Uribe, according to a league source.

The Marlins are exploring free agent and trade options to fill their third base need. For weeks, they have retained interest in Uribe.

Reportedly, the Rays also have shown interest in Uribe, but as a first base option. On Friday night, Tampa Bay reached agreement with first baseman James Loney on a three-year, $21 million contract.

The Marlins also have inquired about Uribe’s interest in playing some first base. If Miami is to reach a deal for Uribe, who is seeking at least two and possibly three years, he could fill a few options.

The veteran would be the primary third baseman. But if he is willing to play some first base, he also could be a right-handed hitting option in place of Garrett Jones, who signed a two-year deal on Tuesday.

The left-handed hitting Jones is expected to get a chance against lefties. But adding Uribe would give the club the flexibility to sit Jones versus tough southpaws.

Miami has already signed three free agents in the past week — catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and second baseman Rafael Furcal and Jones. All three have playoff experience.

So does Uribe, who was an impact player for the Dodgers in the postseason in ’13.

Uribe also was part of World Series championship teams with the White Sox and Giants.

The Marlins have been weighing whether to sign a free agent, like Uribe, or trade some of its pitching depth for a third baseman with controllable years before reaching free agency.

Joe Frisaro

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