The day was coming, and now the day is here.
Miami Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto has officially been traded.
The All-Star catcher is taking his talents to the division rival Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for catcher Jorge Alfaro, pitching prospects Sixto Sanchez and Will Stewart and $250,000 in international bonus pool money.
Realmuto, rejected a contract extension offer from the Marlins with two years remaining on his contract in October, the baseball was in Miami’s glove as they entered into negotiations to trade him. With spring training opening next week for teams across the majors, trade talks increased and the Phillies help end the saga.
The Marlins shared the background and statistics regarding who they were able to acquire in return for the catcher.
Alfaro, 25, hit .262 (90×344) with 16 doubles, two triples, ten homers, and 37 RBI in 108 games in 2018, his first full season in the Majors. He caught 21 base runners attempting to steal, tied for third-most in the National League. In the Minor Leagues in 2017 and 2018, he combined to throw out 39.7 percent (48-of-121).
The Sincelejo, Colombia, native has a .270 average with 22 doubles, 15 home runs, and 51 RBI in 143 games since making his Major League debut in 2016. He has a .262 career average in 634 Minor League games since 2010, with 135 doubles, 20 triples, 74 home runs, and 360 RBI, and was a league All-Star each season from 2013-’17. He was a 2010 international free agent signing by the Texas Rangers and was acquired by Philadelphia as part of the Cole Hamels trade in 2015.
Sánchez, 20, was the consensus No. 1 prospect in the Phillies’ Minor League system by Baseball America, MLB Pipeline, and FanGraphs. He is also rated among the top-30 prospects in Major League Baseball by those publications: No. 13 by Baseball America, No. 16 by FanGraphs, and No. 27 by MLB Pipeline. Sánchez is also rated as the No. 2 right-handed pitching prospect in the Minor Leagues by Baseball America, and No. 7 by MLB Pipeline.
A native of San Cristobal, Dominican Republic, Sánchez was a 2015 international free agent signing by the Phillies. He was a Florida State League All-Star last season for Single-A Clearwater, posting a 4-3 record and 2.51 ERA (46.2 ip/13 er) in eight starts, striking out 45 batters, walking just 11, and holding opponents to a .224 batting average before his season was cut short due to an injury.
Sánchez has a 15-12 record with a 2.48 ERA in 48 career Minor League appearances (39 starts) since debuting with the Dominican Summer League Phillies in 2015. He earned Gulf Coast League All-Star honors in 2016, going 5-0 with a 0.50 ERA in 11 starts, and was 5-7 with a 3.03 ERA in 18 starts between Low-A and High-A in 2017.
Stewart, 21, is a native of Huntsville, Alabama, and was a 20th-round selection of the Phillies out of high school in 2015. He was rated as the No. 18 prospect in Philadelphia’s system by FanGraphs. Stewart has gone 15-6 with a 3.20 ERA in 56 career games (40 starts), with 203 strikeouts in 239.0 innings and a .232 average against. He was a Midseason & Postseason All-Star in the South Atlantic League for Single-A Lakewood in 2018, going 8-1 with a 2.06 ERA (113.2/26), posting career highs in starts, wins, innings, and strikeouts (90), while holding opponents to a .218 batting average.