When the Phillies went to arbitration with All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto, they felt they were being fair. The Phillies offered $10 million, which would be a new record for catchers in their third year of arbitration. But Realmuto and his agent decided asked for $12.4 million. The two sides went to the arbitration table and the verdict is in.
Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports that the arbitrator has decided that the number presented by the Phillies was the better number. As such, the Phillies will pay Realmuto $10 million in 2020. That number exceeds the arbitration number of $8.275 million that Matt Wieters received from the Baltimore Orioles.
The Phillies and Realmuto both have said that regardless of the verdict, the two sides hope to work out a long-term extension with one another.
The highest-paid catcher in baseball currently is Yasmani Grandal, who signed a four-year deal with the Chicago White Sox with an average annual value worth $18.25 million per year. Realmuto probably will eclipse that number in terms of average annual value, and the years could be about right, though maybe the Phillies would go five seasons.
Now that this part of the process is over, the Phillies and Realmuto can get down to business.