Even as the Harper and Machado sweepstakes lurch into their fourth months - with numerous usual, big-money suspects (Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees, Chicago Cubs) apparently taking a pass, and the void filled with some dark horses and mystery teams (Chicago White Sox, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants) - much of the industry takes it as an inevitability that the Phillies will walk away with one of them. As I wrote in the latest edition of Phillies Nuggets, Realmuto, already the best offensive catcher in the sport, could actually get even better with his move out of Miami.
That bunch of names covers most of the top portion of the Phillies farm, so there' still a good bit of variability in the outcome here. "The entire offseason was consumed with where Realmuto may wind up, and he was finally dealt six days before pitchers and catchers workouts begin for the Marlins".
Teams that wanted to have extension talks were told no by the Marlins, but it's expected that Realmuto will ask for a deal that reaches Yasmani Grandal's annual salary for 2019 by the 2nd or 3rd year of any extension talks. Pitchers are also confident they can throw balls in the dirt because they know Realmuto can block them.
"We're talking about the best catcher in all of baseball, so of course he was popular", Hill said.
"In Sanchez we saw a front-of-the-rotation starter", Hill said.
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Thus far through his five-year career, the Del City, Oklahoma, native has a.309/.356/.492 career slash away from Marlins Park, with 59 doubles, 12 triples, 37 home runs, 137 RBI, and 62 walks spanning 280 games. The 27-year-old is under team control through 2020 and can only enter free agency in 2021. Alfaro struck out in 40 percent of his at bats last season while walking just 18 times in 377 plate appearances.
Miami's rebuilding project will probably continue for several years under CEO Derek Jeter, whose group bought the team after the 2017 season.
Here's the issue: Sanchez experienced elbow inflammation parts of the last two seasons and was forced to skip the Arizona Fall League after soreness in his collarbone set in. Miami also received $250,000 worldwide bonus pool money. He is due to make $5.9 million this coming season, money the Marlins might now apply toward acquiring more players.
Needless to say, after seeing the All-Star trio of Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yelich, and Marcell Ozuna unceremoniously disposed of with little to speak of in return, Marlins fans (yes, a few of us actually exist) were a little non-plussed.