Phillies Catcher J.T. Realmuto Has Surgery Ahead of What Could Be Busy Winter for Him

WASHINGTON - Phillies catcher J.T. Realmuto had arthroscopic surgery to clean up a meniscus (cartilage) problem in his right knee on Friday.

"It was successful," manager Gabe Kapler said. "Looks like he'll be back in the clubhouse tomorrow and on his way to a full recovery."

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Realmuto will be ready long before spring training.

He was arguably the Phillies' MVP in 2019.

He hit .275 and reached career highs in homers (25) and RBIs (83). He led all big-league catchers in RBIs, runs (90), hits (144) and doubles (36). Behind the plate, he threw out 37 would-be base stealers, the most in the majors.

No catcher in the majors logged more time behind the plate than Realmuto. He started 130 games at catcher and logged 1,139⅓ innings. Milwaukee's Yasmani Grandal is second at 1,075⅔.

Realmuto may be doing more than recovering from surgery this winter and getting ready for next season. He will be eligible for free agency after next season but the Phillies would like to lock him up to a long-term deal before then and it would not be surprising to see an extension come this winter. Best guess is Realmuto would get something in the neighborhood of five years and $100 million.

Andrew Knapp started at catcher Friday night. Deivy Grullon is likely to get the start with Zach Eflin on the mound Saturday night.

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