MLB Trade Rumors: J.T. Realmuto to the Philadelphia Phillies from the Miami Marlins is close, according to multiple reports from national baseball writers on the Tweeter. The consensus is that the Marlins would be getting a package headed up by righthanded pitching prospect Sixto Sanchez and catcher Jorge Alfaro, with another piece or two also going to Miami.
Realmuto, who turns 28 next month, is one of the top catchers in baseball, and with two years to go before he’s eligible for free agency, he’s been part of trade rumors all offseason, since the rebuilding Miami Marlins don’t appear likely to contend in that time period. While Realmuto has attracted interest from almost every contender, the asking price Miami was demanding was steep enough to keep anything from happening until, it appears, this point, when the Phillies, looking to make big moves this offseason to get to the top of the National League, have apparently decided to bite the bullet.
Sanchez, 20, is a consensus top 30 prospect in baseball, though he hasn’t pitched above high-A yet. More interesting for Texas Rangers fans is the inclusion in the deal of Jorge Alfaro. Alfaro, of course, spent a number of years as one of the most exciting prospects in the Rangers system before being dealt to Philadelphia as part of the package in the Cole Hamels trade. He has one of the best arms of any catcher in baseball and legit plus-plus raw power, but his ongoing issues with plate discipline have some questioning whether he’ll ever develop into a solid major league starting catcher.
Alfaro will join another former top Rangers prospect in Miami, as the Marlins acquired Lewis Brinson from Milwaukee last offseason in the Christian Yelich trade. Brinson and Alfaro were part of that remarkable 2013 Hickory Crawdads team that also included future major leaguers Nomar Mazara, Joey Gallo, Ronald Guzman, Nick Williams, Ryan Rua, Keone Kela, Carl Edwards, Jose Leclerc, Andrew Faulkner, Connor Sadzeck, Cody Ege and Alex Claudio.
UPDATE — Per Jeff Passan, the Phillies and Marlins have a deal, with Sixto Sanchez, Jorge Alfaro, Will Stewart and international slot money going to Miami for Realmuto.