The Detroit Tigers have had their fair share of injuries to starting pitchers and Michael Fulmer has been no stranger to the list. After starting every game he pitched from 2016 through 2020, Fulmer has just four starts in 2021 through 25 appearances.
The Tigers last used him as a starter on May 4 and he didn’t make it out of the first inning. Since then, he’s been in the bullpen when healthy and has even logged six saves. Unfortunately, he went back on the injured list on June 27 with what is being called a right cervical spine strain. Luckily, he could be back in 10 days.
The Cleveland Indians should monitor Fulmer’s track back and, if he returns to full strength, a trade. While Fulmer has struggled starting this season, he’s not that far removed from a terrific start to his career.
In 2016 Fulmer won the American League Rookie of the Year before being an All-Star in 2017. He struggled in 2018 and rather imploded in 2020 after not pitching in 2019, but he’s been able to get back on track this year with a 4.05 ERA.
As for his contract, Fulmer is rather cheap currently at $3.1 million in total this year with a year of arbitration left next year. Given that the Tigers have moved him into the bullpen, he might be an easy trade target in the coming month.