Michael Fulmer is continuing his road to recovery from knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus earlier this spring. After throwing five innings last week in an extended spring training game, the right-handed pitcher threw another four innings on Wednesday. In talking with people on twitter, Fulmer said he’s expecting to make one more start before taking his rehab to the Gulf Coast League.
At this point, he’s unsure as to whether he’ll be reporting to Advanced-A St. Lucie once his rehabilitation is complete, but I would be surprised if he isn’t. The Mets selected him in the first round (44th overall pick) of the 2011 amateur draft. He showed what he’s capable of in 2012, his first full season of professional baseball with the Savannah Sand Gnats in the South Atlantic League.
Fulmer started 21 games for the Gnats, spanning 108.1 innings pitched. In that time, the right-hander went 7-6 with a 2.74 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 101 stirkeouts, and 38 walks. His BB/9 rate settled in at 3.2, while his K/9 ended up at 8.4.
He’s also currently ranked number nine on the MMN Top 25 Mets Prospects. Here’s some of what we had to say about Fulmer heading into this season:
Fulmer throws three defined pitches, and has been known to mix in a fourth every now and then. His fastball is his best pitch, an explosive pitch that sits in the mid-90s and has touched 97 MPH on occasion. His slider is his second best offering, and it comes in at 83-85 with sharp late movement – exactly what you want from a slider. He has been working on a change-up, and it is still in development. Honestly, he did not need one in High School with the dominance of his fastball and slider, so the change is a project. Progress has been made, however, and he mixes in a 12-6 curve at times to keep hitters off balance. It is ridiculous that his pitches and mindset are so mature when you consider young he is.
Looking back on his 2012 season, I agree with the last line of the above analysis. He’s now 20-years-old, but he had a fantastic year in low-A during his age-19 season. Prior to pitching in the Sally League, he only had four appearances (three starts) in the Gulf Coast League, and he allowed seven runs (six earned) on nine hits in only 5.1 innings pitched. The amount of growth he showed last season was tremendous.
Noah Syndergaard should be making his way to Double-A BInghamton soon, and I would be shocked if Fulmer didn’t end up in St. Lucie once his rehab is complete. We wish Michael the best of luck as he nears the end of his recovery, and a healthy 2013.