Valdespin has been on the brink of having his contract selected by Miami, but it all has hinged on Realmuto's health. No roster decision was made after the Marlins lost, 5-0, to the Reds on Friday night at Great American Ball Park.
The Marlins were planning on bringing up Valdespin on Thursday to replace third baseman Martin Prado, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a right shoulder sprain.
But because Realmuto came down with back spasms before Wednesday's game at New York, the decision was to add catching depth. So, Jhonatan Solano had his contract selected from New Orleans, leaving Valdespin in limbo.
Realmuto, however, was cleared to play on Friday in the series opener with the Reds, batting seventh in the starting lineup. He went hitless in four at-bats.
"He got in the cage, tested it, and said he was fine and good to go," manager Dan Jennings said.
Realmuto said his back was much improved over 24 hours.
"Yesterday, it was still pretty tight," the rookie catcher said. "I kind of just went through some more treatment, and then this morning, woke up, felt a lot better. Got some treatment."
Realmuto noted he had a similar bout of tightness in Spring Training, when he has to sit a few days.
"The same thing happened to me in Spring Training," he said. "It was almost the exact situation. Day one, it locked up, and hurt real bad. Day two, it kind of loosened up. The third day, I woke up, and it was pretty much gone. That's how it feels today."