According to the sources below, the Reds are still actively involved for Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto. And it sounds like the price on Realmuto has fallen a bit. Jonathan India, the Reds #1 draft pick in 2018 (5th overall) out of the University of Florida, is now being mentioned as a possible headliner in the return.

If the Reds make this deal, expect them to be shopping Tucker Barnhart and his nice new contract, possibly to replenish the prospects roster.

J.T. Realmuto was the best catcher in baseball last year and second place (Yasmani Grandal) wasn’t particularly close. He has two years of team control left, having signed a $5.9 million deal with the Marlins for 2019 in his second arbitration year. Realmuto is excellent behind the plate and batting.

If the Reds can somehow trade for Realmuto without giving up Nick Senzel, Taylor Trammell and Hunter Greene, it would be a wonderful thing, especially offset by the return for Barnhart.

Update 3: The Reds aren’t the only team still trying to acquire the Marlins catcher.

UPDATE 2: Realmuto would benefit on offense by being out of Miami’s cavernous ballpark. (h/t scottya in comments) Think of how NL MVP Christian Yelich’s numbers exploded in Milwaukee.

UPDATE 1: In terms of money, here’s one way to think of it. The difference between Realmuto and Barnhart’s 2019 contracts is small. $3 million. Yes, the gap will be larger in 2020, but Realmuto would still be constrained by being in the arbitration system. In 2021 and 2022, the Reds pay Tyler Stephenson league minimum instead of $11+ million for the last two years of Barnhart.