Bryce Harper has some strong thoughts on teammate J.T. Realmuto.
Realmuto will be eligible for free agency after the season, and Harper doesn’t want to see the Philadelphia Phillies lose him.
“I think J.T. is a great player,” Harper told reporters on Friday, via the Phillies’ website. “If the Phillies don’t end up signing him back, which would be terrible and sad, I think there’s a lot of other teams out there that are going to want to sign the guy. He’s a Gold Glove-caliber catcher every year, he’s a great person, a great player. I mean, everybody in this organization from the top down wants to see him in red pinstripes for the rest of his career, and hopefully we can make that happen.”
The Phillies acquired Realmuto for three players in a trade last year, knowing that he would only have two seasons until free agency.
Realmuto rewarded the Phillies with a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger season. He batted .275/.328/.493 with an .820. His 25 home runs were a career-high.
Realmuto is a top player at a premium position, so it’s understandable why Harper — who signed a 13-year-deal with Philly — wants the catcher as his teammate long-term.