The Miami Marlins on Thursday traded their All-Star catcher to the division rival Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for catcher Jorge Alfaro, highly regarded pitching prospects Sixto Sanchez and Will Stewart and worldwide bonus pool money.
An idea of how far #Marlins went in this process: when #Yankees earlier this offseason were trying to get Realmuto to spin to #Mets for Syndergaard, Mia requested Gary Sanchez and Miguel Andujar.
"We did not have to trade JT", Marlines president of baseball operations Michael Hill told reporters. He and the front office met before Spring Training, discussing options for the upcoming season, asking him to buy into the new plan for the organization. But it was only within the past week that the Phillies resurfaced, swooping in to acquire the much-coveted catcher. The last player involved in the deal is a pitcher that took some time to develop but looks to be a back half of the rotation guy or someone that could be turned into a useful pen arm. It was the best year yet for a player who has been one of the better hitting backstops in the league for the past three seasons.
Sanchez has struck out 191 batters while walking only 43 in 221 minor-league innings. The concept of restocking a bare cupboard is unfamiliar to this franchise which has smartly used free agency at key moments to find its way to a pair of World Series victories.
The Phillies remain confident that they will land one of the big free agents this season and they made their intent clear about being ready to spend "stupid" money when they met the Marlins' demands when so many other teams were unwilling.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post cites multiple sources (Twitter link) for the proposition that the negotiations are "down to physical reviews" and the supplemental prospect pieces in the swap.
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"He's been playing half his game in Miami", Klentak said. "The 20-year-old missed a majority of the 2018 season with elbow inflammation".
In the end, it was the Marlins who stood firm in their desires in a trade, What started out with as many as 12 teams looking to play "Let's Make A Deal" the demand of Major League Baseball players prospects appeared to be too high for one player.
Realmuto has a career.279 batting average, 59 home runs and 243 RBI.
Given the nature of Derek Jeter's "plan" to build from the ground up, this could be considered a long-term success for the Marlins.
Having already settled with the Marlins, Realmuto is set to make $5.9 million in 2019. Outfielders Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna as well as second baseman Dee Gordon were all shipped off before the start of the 2018 season.