Phillies 2019 season preview: Catcher J.T. Realmuto

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CLEARWATER, FL - FEBRUARY 16: Newly acquired J. T. Realmuto (10) walks out onto the field before the Philadelphia Phillies spring training workout on February 16, 2019 at the Carpenter Complex in Clearwater, Florida. (Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
CLEARWATER, FL - FEBRUARY 16: Newly acquired J. T. Realmuto (10) walks out onto the field before the Philadelphia Phillies spring training workout on February 16, 2019 at the Carpenter Complex in Clearwater, Florida. (Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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CLEARWATER, FL – FEBRUARY 16: Newly acquired catcher J. T. Realmuto (10) catches a bullpen session during the Philadelphia Phillies spring training workout on February 16, 2019 at the Carpenter Complex in Clearwater, Florida. (Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

Projections for Realmuto in 2019

As I said earlier, Realmuto has improved an aspect of his offensive game in every season he has been in the league. In 2019, I think he’ll put it all together. He batted seventh before the Marlins blew up their team, in a lineup that consisted of Dee Gordon, Marcel Ozuna, Giancarlo Stanton (2017 MVP), and Christian Yelich (2018 MVP).

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Will Realmuto continue the trend of a former Marling winning MVP?? Unlikely, as awesome as that would be. Yet, his production will definitely see a boost, considering this is the best lineup that he has been in over his career. Four former/current All-Stars, two former MVPs, and one of the best young hitters in baseball in Rhys Hoskins. I anticipate Realmuto will thrive in this environment and will see significantly better pitches with the amount of talent around him.

In terms of stats, here’s how I see Realmuto’s 2019 going: .310 BA, 20 home runs, 70 RBI, 40 doubles, 40 walks, 40% caught stealing rate and another All-Star appearance. Competition for catching in the All-Star Game is pretty fierce for the NL, with Willson Contreras, Molina, and Yasmani Grandal always making their cases. But Realmuto has the all-around talent to beat them out, especially when his BA is .310, his OBP is over .350, and his OPS is up around .900.

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The Phillies’ future changed this offseason. After several years of below average/horrible performances, management went out and got game-changers at multiple positions. Realmuto’s production in his first year in Philly will be a huge determinant for how his tenure will go. If he stays consistent at the plate and behind it, Philly will love him and he’ll help lead the Phillies to the playoffs.

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