Among Florida/Miami Marlins catchers, only Charles Johnson hit more home runs than J.T. Realmuto.
Over four full seasons with the team, Realmuto hit 59 home runs, including a pair of inside-the-parkers. His only walk-off as a member of the club, however, came on this day five years to complete the comeback against the New York Mets. After the Marlins erased a three-run ninth-inning deficit, Realmuto’s blast in the 10th ended it.
A José Reyes single in the top of the ninth had pushed the Mets lead to 4-1 as the Marlins came to bat at Marlins Park in the bottom of the frame on Sept. 19, 2017. Trailing by three, Miami came to bat against a familiar face in former AJ Ramos, a former All-Star closer for the Marlins.
Justin Bour seemed to jumpstart the offense with a solo home run to lead off the inning. After Realmuto, Derek Dietrich, Brian Anderson, and Dee Strange-Gordon alternated singles and strikeouts, the Mets were one out away from victory, but the tying run was on base.
Down to their last strike, the Marlins cut the 4-2 lead in half on a seeing-eye single from A.J. Ellis. Three pitches later, Ichiro Suzuki lined one off the top of Reyes’ glove at shortstop and into in the outfield for the game-tying single. After walking Giancarlo Stanton on four pitches to load the bases, Ramos’ night was done.
Paul Sewald was able to strike out Christian Yelich to end the ninth, but the Marlins had new life. Kyle Barraclough worked a scoreless 10th to get his team to the plate with a chance to win it.
Sewald stayed in the game and opened the 10th by getting Bour to fly out to end a nine-pitch at-bat. Three pitches later, Realmuto lined one over the left-field wall for a walk-off solo home run to end the contest and complete the comeback.
Prior to the ninth inning, all of the contest’s runs came courtesy of the long ball. Reyes got the scoring started with a solo shot in the first before Yelich drew Miami even with one of his own the fourth. Travis d’Arnaud put the Mets back in front with a two-run blast in the sixth.
Reyes finished with four hits in the loss. Realmuto tallied three in the win, including his first career walk-off homer. It came on this day five years ago.