There have been plenty of MLB players with at least one season of 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases.
Catchers with that kind of skillset, however, have been scarce in the history of the game.
Traditionally, the catcher position has required more defensive, communication, and leadership skills than offense.
That, however, has been changing recently.
Even so, it’s extremely rare to find a backstop who can be an asset defensively, produce some power and, additionally, steal some bases.
That’s, in reality, what makes the 20-20 line rare among catchers: the speed element.
Even if they are good offensively, they are often slow and not interested in stealing bases.
“J.T. Realmuto is just the second catcher (Ivan Rodriguez) to hit 20 HR and steal 20 bases in a season,” MLB Stats tweeted.
J.T. Realmuto is just the second catcher (Ivan Rodriguez) to hit 20 HR and steal 20 bases in a season. pic.twitter.com/NK6zFz75Mf
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) September 30, 2022
A Dangerous Power-Speed Combo That Is Rare For A Catcher
Realmuto, unlike most of his colleagues, can really move his legs.
He also has some power: this is the third time in his career that he hits at least 20 home runs.
But it’s the first time he completes 20 thefts.
He is now in an exclusive club of 20-20 catchers with Hall of Famer Ivan Rodriguez.
Not too shabby, huh?
For the year, the 31-year-old Realmuto is slashing a cool .272/.339/.471 with 21 home runs and the 20 stolen bases.
He is also universally recognized as one of the best three defensive catchers in baseball when we factor in elements such as framing, game-calling, and communication with his pitchers.
The Phillies’ playoff chances are hanging by a thread, and Realmuto can help save their season with some good performance in the last two series.
He is one of their few hopes.