White Sox

Has something clicked for Carson Fulmer?

Has something clicked for Carson Fulmer?

Carson Fulmer didn't exactly set the world on fire in Triple-A Charlotte this year, but with the White Sox trading away multiple starting pitchers and with Carlos Rodon out with an injury, he's getting a chance with the big league club.

After a first start to forget on Aug. 21, Fulmer has been much better since being called back up as rosters expanded in September. Fulmer delivered a second straight quality start in Friday's 3-2 loss to the Tigers.

He gave up one run on four hits and a walk while striking out five in six innings. In his last two starts he has pitched 12 innings, gave up one run, four walks and seven hits while striking out 14.

So what's different?

"He's working a lot quicker," Bill Melton said on White Sox Postgame Live. "He's a little more controlled.

"When you watch him pitch now, he works the game."

Fulmer, 23, had a 5.79 ERA in 25 starts in Triple-A this season. Walks were a big problem with 65 in 126 innings.

Fulmer got to make his first big league start in late August as part of a doubleheader and it didn't go well. He gave up six runs and three walks in 1 1/3 innings and was sent back to Charlotte.

Since rejoining the White Sox Fulmer has made two bullpen appearances and these last two starts. He has a 1.69 ERA in September in 10 2/3 innings and Friday's start was his best outing as far as control is concerned with the one walk.

"This is totally different," Melton said. "Whatever Don Cooper has done with him, he's absorbed. We heard he was a smart kid and he's a No. 1 pick. Even in the minor leagues he was walking everybody and getting hit. Something happened, something clicked. Maybe it's confidence. The first game he came back, he came out of the bullpen, threw really well. Then they gave him a start, threw really well. Another start, threw really well."

While Fulmer has been producing lately, it will not be easy to earn a spot in the White Sox rotation next year with young starters Reynaldo Lopez and Lucas Giolito sure to earn spots alongside more experienced starters in Rodon and James Shields. Maybe Fulmer can lock down that fifth spot and the White Sox are watching his play in September to see what they have in the right-hander.

"He is a really competitive guy," Chuck Garfien said in the video above. "Something tells me he has been hearing for the last five, six weeks 'Fulmer is going to go to the bullpen eventually, he's going to go to the bullpen eventually.'

"He wants to be a starter. I bet he heard all this and he's like 'You know what, I'm going to show these guys I belong in the rotation' and he's looking like it right now."

Watch the video above from Postgame Live to see the full discussion on Fulmer from Melton and Garfien.

The must-listen Nicky Delmonico White Sox Talk Podcast

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USA TODAY

The must-listen Nicky Delmonico White Sox Talk Podcast

While taking part in the White Sox hitters camp in Glendale, Ariz., Nicky Delmonico joined Chuck Garfien and Ryan McGuffey on the podcast to talk about his impressions of Luis Robert and Eloy Jimenez. But that was only the beginning. 

Delmonico went in-depth about his first major league season, doing hot yoga this winter with Jake Burger, the one White Sox player he expects to have a big season in 2018 (the answer might surprise you), losing a big bet to Tim Anderson.

Plus, Delmonico helps us give away a pair of 3-day passes to Sox Fest and much more.

Listen to the latest White Sox Talk Podcast right here:

Is Luis Robert so good that he'll start the season at Double-A?

Is Luis Robert so good that he'll start the season at Double-A?

Just how good is Luis Robert?

Well, that's the problem. Us on the outside, we don't know exactly.

The White Sox obviously love him, willing to give him big bucks to come play a starring role in the rebuild. Rick Renteria raved about Robert last month at the Winter Meetings, getting White Sox fans all excited by hyping Robert's speed, fielding skills and power.

But as good as the scouting reports sound, is Robert really so good that he'll go from never playing a game in the United States to the higher levels of minor league baseball right away?

That eyebrow-raising possibility was floated Tuesday.

Robert unsurprisingly has plenty of confidence in his own abilities and told The Athletic's James Fegan at the team's hitters' camp in Arizona that his goal is to make it to the big leagues sometime in 2018.

But perhaps the more interesting comment came from Chris Getz, the White Sox director of player development, who said Tuesday that Robert could potentially start the season at either of the White Sox two Class A affiliates, Kannapolis or Winston-Salem, or even at Double-A Birmingham.

Robert is just 20 years old, and he's yet to play a game of minor league baseball in the United States after spending his teenage years playing in Cuba. In fact, his only action since joining the White Sox has been 28 games in the Dominican Summer League. He did fare quite well in that handful of contests, slashing .310/.491/.536 with three homers, 14 RBIs, 12 stolen bases and a sparkling 22-to-23 walk-to-strikeout ratio. But that's not really the point.

The White Sox are in no rush with Robert, or any of their highly touted prospects, for that matter. Not expected to compete for a championship in 2018, there doesn't appear to be any reason to elevate Robert to the highest levels of the minors so quickly without first getting him some experience in the lower levels.

Of course, Getz even mentioning the possibility of Robert starting the season at Birmingham should also show just how good the team thinks Robert is right now. So maybe Robert's major league dream for 2018 isn't as crazy as it sounds?