MIAMI (AP) The Miami Marlins' feud with agent Scott Boras has escalated, and the team says he'll be left out of any contract negotiations regarding ace Jose Fernandez.

Team president David Samson pledged to exclude Boras after the agent complained about the Marlins' handling of another one of his clients, outfielder Marcell Ozuna. The dispute reduces the already slim likelihood the Marlins will sign Fernandez to a long-term deal.

An exchange of barbs began Wednesday with Boras criticizing the Marlins for demoting Ozuna to Triple-A last year when he was in a 1-for-36 slump. Boras, speaking at the general managers' meetings in Boca Raton, Florida, questioned the Marlins' motivation for sending Ozuna to the minors. The lost service time prevented Ozuna from becoming eligible for salary arbitration.

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