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MLB Draft Potential #1 Pick: Carson Fulmer

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In Baseball America's mock draft earlier this week, they had the Diamondbacks using their first pick on Fulmer. What do we know about this pitcher?

Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports
  • DOB: 13 December 1993 (21)
  • 6' 0" / 195 lbs
  • RHP
  • Vanderbilt

Profile: While Tate's stock has been slipping slightly of late, Fulmer's has only been getting stronger. Fulmer's fastball sits 92-94 with movement and can flash 96 even late in games when Fulmer is reaching back for something extra. Fulmer also features a strong, above average curve and a solid change-up. He is known for his control and poise and for having great mound presence despite his smaller size.

Pros: Pitching in the rotation for one of the elite baseball programs in the country, Fulmer has been a dominant force putting together some spectacular, eye-popping numbers, including a 132/37 K/BB ration to go along with his sterling 1.51 ERA. Unlike Tate, Fulmer shows no signs of fatigue and regularly pitches deep into games, including thee complete games in 14 starts. After 952/3 innings, Fulmer's WHIP was a mere 1.02. Clearly, Fulmer has the stuff to pitch in the upper half of any rotation.

Cons: Like Tate, there is no reason for Fulmer to sign at any sort of discount should he be taken 1-1. The two other biggest knocks on Fulmer are his delivery and his size. Fulmer's delivery is a bit of a high effort delivery, leading some scouts to fear he may eventually be headed to the bullpen as an elite-caliber closer. As for his height, coming in at 6' 0", there are still those that are worried his lack of height may hurt his ability to pitch downhill to generate misses and poor contact at the highest level.

The Take: Once again, I have no issues with what Carson Fulmer is likely to sign for if he is drafted. He too is a pitcher that will not command anywhere close to the full 1-1 slot allotment. Despite Fulmer's high effort delivery, there is nothing terribly funky about his mechanics that makes him any more likely to be an injury concern than anyone else. With proper conditioning, there seems to be little reason to doubt Fulmer's ability to maintain the strength to go 160-200 innings in a season. As for Fulmer's stature, the sort of results Fulmer is already producing would indicate he is getting plenty of movement on his pitches whether he has great downward plane or not.

While he may not have the classic tall, dominating physique associated with a TOR pitcher, Fulmer possesses superior mound presence and the tools to succeed. Zack Greinke, Johnny Cueto, Anibal Sanchez, Tim Lincecum, Gio Gonzalez, and Sonny Gray are all pitchers who are the same size or shorter than Fulmer, so holding his size against him despite his obvious tools seems silly to me. With a possible late 2017 or early 2018 arrival, Fulmer's development cycle plays nicely into the team's current competitive window model. If I am focusing solely on healthy players, Carson Fulmer is my choice for 1-1