Nick Markakis' agent to meet with other clubs for first time

Have the Orioles' negotiations with Nick Markakis snarled?

For the first time since free agency began this offseason, the representative for outfielder Nick Markakis will speak with teams other than the Orioles about his client's employment opportunities in 2015.

Markakis' agent, Jamie Murphy, confirmed Monday that he has decided to attend this week’s general managers' meetings in Phoenix and already has set up individual meetings with multiple teams to discuss Markakis.

He would not specify to which clubs he’ll be talking or with how many he’ll be meeting, but when asked if he was scheduled to speak with Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette in Phoenix, Murphy said: “No, not at this time.”

Both sides have said repeatedly in the past that they would like to come to an agreement to keep Markakis, the club’s longest tenured player, in an Orioles uniform for several more years.

The widely held sense was that they were nearing a four-year agreement worth in the neighborhood of $10 million to $12 million per season shortly after the World Series ended. But an agreement never came, and the sides have not had any meaningful discussion in roughly a week.

Up until Monday, Markakis’ side had negotiated exclusively with the Orioles, despite the opportunity to talk with any team beginning Nov. 4. That now has changed.

Markakis, who turns 31 next Monday, hit .276 with a .342 on-base percentage and 14 home runs in 155 games with the Orioles in 2014. The right fielder picked up his second AL Gold Glove Award last week. He has been with the major league team since 2006.

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