There was much debate about what the White Sox would do with Carson Fulmer. They opted to try him as a starter but the experiment hasn’t worked thus far.
The Chicago White Sox have a loaded farm system. Due to the influx of talent, some prospects that we were accustomed to talking about seem to go overlooked. One of those guys is Carson Fulmer. Fulmer made his debut last season and may were eager to see how the youngster looked. After all, the organization selected him eighth overall in the 2015 MLB Draft.
After debate about what his future would hold. The team decided to send him to the minors so he could become a starting pitcher. It was clear that was the path they wanted to take, even though several scouts pointed out his small stature and violent delivery didn’t project well for a rotation spot. Despite this, that’s what the organization wanted. Well, so far after close to a year in the minors as a starter, the results have been less than stellar.
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Fulmer has spent the entire 2017 season with the White Sox Triple-A affiliate, the Charlotte Knights. In 25 starts, he is 7-9 with an uninspiring 5.79 ERA. In a spot start for the White Sox, the 23-year-old allowed six runs in just 1.1 innings of work. That balances out to a 40.50 ERA. It’s a small sample size, but it may be time to move Fulmer into a bullpen role.
Fulmer was ranked No. 5 in the White Sox farm system but has since slipped to No. 11. That was due in large part to the immense amount of talent Rick Hahn brought in, but he also slipped off the list of baseball’s top 100 prospects. If he’s struggling this much at Triple-A, what makes us think he’ll be able to compete in the majors?
There’s no shame in admitting the experiment didn’t work. The White Sox saw him as a potential No. 2 starter but that may have been a stretch. This organization does a great job developing pitchers. But right now, Fulmer isn’t living up to expectations. That may not be such a bad thing. The system is stocked talented pitching. So much so, that Fulmer could carve out a spot in the bullpen. Depending on how Zack Burdi does in his return from Tommy John surgery, he could see himself as the club’s future closer.
The White Sox bullpen is in need of a makeover. They basically traded all the relievers they had. So that will be an area of need in the future. Even if Fulmer was able to make a turnaround, he may not end up being good enough to crack the rotation. Again, the White Sox have a ton of talented arms in their system. What they do need is help in the bullpen. And someone like Fulmer could pay dividends for them there.