Detroit Tigers right-handed pitcher Michael Fulmer has been scratched from his scheduled spring training start on Monday with a right ankle sprain, manager Brad Ausmus told the media. He obtained the injury during agility drills.
The injury has turned out to be a Grade 1 ankle sprain, so Fulmer will be fine in a few days. He was in the designated pitchers pool for the World Baseball Classic, which means that the United States could have called on him if the team ends up needing extra arms in the second round. However, Fulmer's WBC participation is in jeopardy.
After winning the American League Rookie of the Year award in 2016, Fulmer was planning to ease into action during spring training. He was not expected to join Team USA until the second round, but now Ausmus is not sure if the 23-year-old will be able to participate at all.
Fulmer was drafted by the New York Mets in the 1st round (44th pick) of the 2011 MLB Draft. He was drafted on the 2015 Trade Deadline to the Tigers with right-hander Luis Cessa for outfielder Yoenis Cespedes.
In the 2016 season, Fulmer went 11-7 with a 3.06 ERA, 1.119 WHIP, 3.76 FIP, 132 strikeouts, one complete game, one shutout, and 42 walks in 159 innings pitched (26 games). He beat out Gary Sanchez (New York Yankees), Tyler Naquin (Cleveland Indians), and others for the American League Rookie of the Year.