Dan Uggla Hopes to Recruit Cody Ross to Braves After Ross Planned to Lure Uggla to Giants

by abournenesn

Jun 23, 2012

Dan Uggla Hopes to Recruit Cody Ross to Braves After Ross Planned to Lure Uggla to GiantsBOSTON –– Cody Ross missed his buddy.

After playing alongside Dan Uggla for five years in Miami, Ross was abruptly placed on waivers and claimed by the Giants — without contention from the Marlins — in 2010. The transaction split him up from one of his closest friends in baseball.

So once the 2010 season ended, Ross reverted to recruiting. Over that offseason, he advised Uggla to nix a contract extension with the Marlins and instead join him in San Francisco.

To improve those chances, Ross went as far as urging Giants general manager Brian Sabean to offer the second baseman a deal.

"I was just lobbying for them to get him over there because Freddy Sanchez was hurt and we needed somebody to come in and play second," Ross said. "I know they had liked him in the past with rumors about thinking about trading for him earlier in his career, so I figured it was a perfect fit. Obviously, you want to play with your friends and be around them as much as you can."

The reunion never came to fruition, as Uggla signed a five-year, $62 million deal with the Braves after the Marlins shipped him away. But with Atlanta visiting Boston this weekend, it triggered fond memories between Miami's former stalwarts.

Nearly two years ago, however, Uggla was very distraught over Ross' departure. After receiving word that San Francisco claimed Ross off Miami's waivers in August 2010, the two-time All-Star wept in front of his locker.

"It was the first time I ever had to really experience something like that — the business side of baseball," Uggla said. "I changed my whole routine, I had to make a new routine and adapt because I didn’t have Cody anymore. It was always me and Cody. It was hard."

Said Ross: "He was very outspoken [after I left], he wanted me to be there with him. But [he's] a true friend that’ll certainly stand up for you, that's for sure."

That's why Ross desperately tried to court Uggla to San Francisco. At that time, the outfielder delivered an array of sales pitches, from praising the Giants' organization to suggesting Uggla move closer to his sister, who lives an hour away from AT&T Park.

But Uggla didn't bite, signing an extension with the Braves in January in 2011.

A year later, though, Uggla found himself in a similar position. When the Giants parted ways with Ross last December, he begged Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez –– who managed both players with the Marlins –– to re-assemble the brotherhood.

"I would always put things in Fredi's ear like that," Uggla said. "Fredi loves [Ross]. We played together for five years, so of course we want to play together again. He's like a brother to me."

Although Ross ultimately struck a deal with the Red Sox, Uggla still hasn't given up on the possibility of a reunion. Since Ross is playing on a one-year contract, the Braves second baseman plans to be back on the prowl come October.

"We’re always trying to recruit each other," Uggla said. "I'll be recruiting him this offseason to come to Atlanta if Boston doesn’t sign him to a long-term deal. Hopefully, we can get him down to Hotlanta –– [the] organization and I’m down there.

"That should be enough, right?"

And the recruiting between Ross and Uggla continues.

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