Why Phillies’ JT Realmuto should receive MVP votes



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We can all agree that the MVP of the 2019 Phillies is undoubtedly JT Realmuto. He might be the most exciting defensive player the Phillies have had since Shane Victorino won 3 straight gold glove awards from 2008-2010.

In the offseason, the Phillies fished JT Realmuto from the Marlins using Jorge Alfaro and top pitching prospect Sixto Sanchez as bait. Realmuto, in turn, has produced in every category.

You need some more power in your lineup? No problem, Realmuto has established new career highs in doubles (34), home runs (23), RBI (78), and slugging percentage (.500).

You say you need a solid defensive presence behind home plate? Will a 48% caught stealing percentage do? Realmuto has caught 41 would be base stealers in 2019. That’s 18 more than the next closest catcher. His current career mark of 36.42% of base stealers caught is currently 4th among active players. Of those players, only 2 have recorded more than 450 plate appearances more than once. JT Realmuto is one and the other is wildly regarded as the best defensive catcher of this generation: Yadier Molina.

What other catcher would you rather have on the base paths? Realmuto has 8 stolen bases to go with 86 runs scored. Both marks lead all catchers in MLB.

Realmuto deserves to garner a few MVP votes. His combination of offense and defense is rare at the catcher position. Mike Piazza offensive prowess put him in the Hall of Fame. His career .922 OPS is an insane number. His career caught stealing % of 31% isn’t.

Bob Boone, the Phillie with the most Gold Gloves as a catcher, had a 40% career caught stealing percentage. During his time as a Phillie, he only had an OPS of .695. Mike Lieberthal had similar batting stats to Realmuto, but led the league in passed balls 3 times and owned a 30% cs%.

That rare combination of bat and glove has led to Realmuto being 5th in WAR (5.3) in the National League, according to FanGraphs. The only players in front of him are Cody Bellinger, Christian Yelich, Ketel Marte, and Anthony Rendon.

Those 4 other players will be heavily considered for MVP, so it’s only logical that a few of those votes fall to JT Realmuto.

Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports