After looking like they would quietly walk away from the trade talk involving Miami Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto, the Houston Astros have now made their presence known and are looking to make a deal.
The Houston Astros are a team that could be one or two players away from hoisting another World Series banner at Minute Maid Park. Adding Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto may be enough for the American League West team to add to its collection.
When the news came out about Realmuto not wanting to sign a long-term deal with the Marlins, the Astros, the 2017 World Series champions, were considered a frontrunner, if not the team to beat in this sweepstakes.
As other teams stepped forward and the offers were thrown at Miami on a daily basis, Houston slipped away, almost as a forgotten franchise.
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"“According to a source, the Astros once again have had discussions with the Marlins for Realmuto. The Padres also remain in the mix, as do the Dodgers, Rays and others. The Mets are no longer in the conversation, however, as they signed free-agent catcher Wilson Ramos to a two-year deal on Tuesday,” Frisaro wrote on Monday.“At this point, it’s unclear if there is a front-runner to go through with a trade because there are so many teams still involved. Each has agreed to some pieces that would be included, but nothing has advanced to finalizing stages.”"
The Atlanta Braves are still considered a serious option as a trade partner with Miami, despite the recent signing of veteran Brian McCann. Of the teams believed to still be in the hunt, the mix of prospects and veteran players with controllable contracts will tempt the Marlins front office.
Kyle Tucker is the player the Marlins are believed to have eyes all along in a deal with Houston. The youngster, who is considered one of the top prospects in all of the Majors, told the Houston Chronicle’s Chandler Rome he expects to be a big part of the Astros plans in 2019 and beyond.
"As Frisaro added, “The No. 5 overall prospect, Tucker is a Tampa, Fla., native and a left-handed-hitting outfielder. Last year at Triple-A Fresno, the 21-year-old belted 24 home runs and notched 93 RBIs. He also appeared in 28 big league games for Houston in 2018.”"
Will the asking price be viewed as too high to make this deal happen?
A 21-home run and 74 RBI season in 2018 was by far his best in the Majors. Miami wants to build the team around Realmuto, with the All-Star as the centerpiece and cornerstone of the franchise.
The Marlins are still intent on making teams over-offer for Realmuto, who is 27 years old and entering the prime of his career.