Dee Gordon led the majors in triples last season.
This season, Gordon might not be able to claim bragging rights on his own team.
Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto legged out his fifth triple on Saturday night to put him one ahead of Gordon.
“The funny thing is, Dee texted me [Saturday night] and said, ‘Quit hitting triples,’” Realmuto said. “We’ve been having a competition this year.”
The last catcher to lead his team in triples outright was the Pirates’ Jason Kendall with five in 1996. Before that, it was Benito Santiago, who topped the 1993 Marlins with six triples.
“It’s been huge for me so far in my career,” Realmuto said of the speed element he provides from a position not normally noted for that skill. “I have a little advantage over the rest of the catchers because I haven’t been doing it for very long, so my legs are a little fresher.”
Realmuto was a high school shortstop when the Marlins drafted him in 2010, but he was converted to catcher as soon as he began his minor-league career. He figures the rigors of the position will ultimately drain him of speed.
“Eventually, all the catching is going to slow me down,” Realmuto said. “Right now, I’m slower than I was at the start of the season. It just happens. But, long-term, it’ll just slow down permanently probably. Hopefully, I can hold that off as long as possible.”
a hall pass
Ichiro Suzuki is all but a shoo-in for the Hall of Fame, a likely first-ballot inductee.
But when he heads to Cooperstown, it won’t be for the first time.
Suzuki has such a fascination with baseball history that he estimates he has visited the Hall at least five or six times since arriving in the United States, and always on his own free time.
“As a baseball player, I think it’s a place that you’ve got to go,” Suzuki said. “When I was in Japan, it was tough to get there, obviously. But that was one of the places I wanted to go when I came to America. It’s a place that I enjoy.”
Suzuki said he most enjoys looking at old baseball artifacts.
“Just to be able to touch the bat of Babe Ruth, being in touch with baseball of the past is probably what I enjoy most,” he said.
▪ Monday: Off day.
▪ Tuesday: Marlins RHP Jose Fernandez (3-0, 2.77 ERA) vs. Washington Nationals RHP Jordan Zimmermann (8-5, 3.30), 7:10 p.m., Marlins Park.
▪ Wednesday: Marlins RHP Tom Koehler (8-6, 3.16) vs. Nationals RHP Doug Fister (3-6, 4.50), 7:10 p.m., Marlins Park.