Bryce Harper pushing for Phillies to re-sign JT Realmuto
Bryce Harper will be in Philadelphia for the next decade-plus, and he is making clear what he wants the team to do in order to complement him.
After the Phillies were eliminated from playoff contention Sunday, the ex-NL MVP called for the team to bring back catcher JT Realmuto next season.
“JT Realmuto needs to be our catcher next season,” said Harper, per Scott Lauber of the Philly Inquirer. “I don’t think that should even be a question.”
The 29-year-old Realmuto will be a free agent this offseason. He continued to demonstrate why he is one of the game’s elite two-way catchers this year. Realmuto hit .265 with an .840 OPS, 11 home runs, and 32 RBIs in just 46 games. He has also thrown out 42.9 percent of would-be base stealers over the last two seasons.
The Phillies have made little progress on extension talks with Realmuto in recent months. The two-time All-Star has been vocal that he does not want to be paid according to the market for catchers but instead should be paid according to what he believes is his true value.
As for Harper, he has made no secret about not wanting to lose Realmuto. Thus, the pressure seems to be on for the Phillies heading into the winter.