Realmuto 'astonished' by former teammate Yelich's ascent
Patrick McDermott / Getty Images Sport / Getty

J.T. Realmuto and Christian Yelich formed part of a promising young core with the Miami Marlins after they were selected two rounds apart in the 2010 draft.

Now that both have found new homes after being traded by the rebuilding Marlins, Yelich has exploded. He won the National League MVP a season ago and leads the majors with 21 home runs so far in 2019.

While Realmuto, now with the Philadelphia Phillies, isn't exactly surprised by Yelich's meteoric rise, he didn't foresee the Milwaukee Brewers outfielder having this level of success.

"I've always known since the day we got drafted that he's always been an unbelievable hitter," Realmuto said, according to Adam McCalvy of "But anybody can be a little astonished at what he's doing.

"Going back to the second half of last year, on top of what he's doing this year, you're talking about historical levels. It's pretty fun to watch. Obviously, I don't like when he does it against the Phillies."

Yelich's second half a season ago was incredible. He earned the MVP by hitting .367 with 25 home runs in his final 65 games. He's mostly maintained that momentum this year by hitting .323/.437/.732 with 20 homers, seven doubles, 42 RBIs, and nine stolen bases in 46 games.

While they're now on opposite sides, the friendship developed while moving through Miami's farm system has remained, and Realmuto hints at the possibility of the two joining forces again someday.

"I would have loved to go over there (to Milwaukee), but I love it here with the Phillies. We'll both be free agents at some point, so maybe we'll play together again."

Realmuto 'astonished' by former teammate Yelich's ascent
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