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Fulmer optioned after 3rd straight rough start

Right-hander knocked around for eight runs in two-plus innings pitched
MLB.com @scottmerkin

CHICAGO -- Carson Fulmer will not make his next start for the White Sox after allowing eight runs over two-plus innings during a 12-5 Texas victory Friday night at Guaranteed Rate Field.

The next start for the White Sox top pick in the 2015 First-Year Player Draft and eighth selection overall will, instead, come at Triple-A Charlotte, as the right-hander was optioned to the Minors following a third straight dismal outing.

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CHICAGO -- Carson Fulmer will not make his next start for the White Sox after allowing eight runs over two-plus innings during a 12-5 Texas victory Friday night at Guaranteed Rate Field.

The next start for the White Sox top pick in the 2015 First-Year Player Draft and eighth selection overall will, instead, come at Triple-A Charlotte, as the right-hander was optioned to the Minors following a third straight dismal outing.

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"Gotta go work on some stuff. It definitely hasn't panned out the way I wanted it to," a solemn Fulmer said after walking five, hitting two and throwing just 38 of his 75 pitches for strikes. "It's tough to handle, but I have to take responsibility for my actions and my performance and continue to work like I always have. Continue to battle and move on to the next one and accomplish as much as I can."

"I told him that I didn't want him to lose sight of the fact that he has a great opportunity after this outing to learn a lot, to take a step back, slow it down a little bit and think about the outing as it went today," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "See what things, pro and con, he could take from it and really evaluate it and that he'd be OK."

Video: TEX@CWS: Renteria on Fulmer, 12-5 loss vs. Rangers

Friday's performance marked the third Fulmer start of 2018 lasting two innings or fewer. He put the White Sox in a three-run hole in the first, hitting Delino DeShields with his first pitch of the game. Even after the White Sox scored two off of Matt Moore in the bottom half, Fulmer couldn't slow down the Rangers.

Video: TEX@CWS: Abreu pulls RBI double down left-field line

His first seven pitches were out of the zone -- a streak stopped by Isiah Kiner-Falefa's sacrifice bunt on a 2-0 pitch -- and 11 of his opening 13 pitches were balls. Fulmer has issued 15 walks over his last five starts covering 20 1/3 innings and has a 9.17 ERA in four home games pitched.

Even on a rebuilding team, with Fulmer getting a chance to prove where he belongs in the present and the future, those numbers equal a change.

"Really just a feel type of thing," said Fulmer, who also acknowledged mechanics changes needed to be made. "I know it's in there. I definitely have the stuff to go out there and have success.

"It's about trying to stay consistent and go out there and give our team the best chance to win. Nothing to change drastically, but just work on a few things here and there to keep those things consecutive."

Shin-Soo Choo's two-out, third-inning grand slam, coming on a 0-2 mistake by Chris Volstad, capped off of a five-run Texas frame and gave the Rangers a six-run lead. Jose Abreu, Tim Anderson and Daniel Palka had two hits apiece for the White Sox, while Matt Davidson and Abreu drove in two.

Video: TEX@CWS: Choo drills grand slam to right field in 3rd

A replacement for Fulmer in the rotation might not be known for a few days, although it's not likely to be Michael Kopech, the team's No. 2 prospect per MLB Pipeline who struck out nine and allowed two hits over seven scoreless innings Friday in Charlotte's 1-0 victory over Columbus. A roster replacement for Fulmer will be announced prior to Saturday's contest.

Losing confidence would be an easy thing to happen for a pitcher with an 8.07 ERA over 32 1/3 innings as Fulmer has. But even in great disappointment, Fulmer knows he belongs.

"I'll never lose [confidence], regardless of what happens," Fulmer said. "Have some work to get done. I'll go down there and do that and get back up here as soon as I can."

"This isn't the last time you're going to see Carson Fulmer," Renteria said. "This is just a reset, which happens from time to time."

SOUND SMART
The White Sox 11-30 record overall and 4-16 record at Guaranteed Rate mark their worst 41-game start and 20-game home start in franchise history.

HE SAID IT
"Better quality pitches. Not falling behind guys. Just really keeping my head up. That's the most important thing right now and getting back up here as soon as I can." -- Fulmer, on his focus at Charlotte

UP NEXT
The White Sox continue their four-game series vs. the Rangers on Saturday at 6:10 p.m. CT and will send Lucas Giolito (2-4, 6.91 ERA) to the mound. Giolito had to work around seven walks his last time out vs. the Cubs, but still got the win.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox, Carson Fulmer