Who plays is often as important as the results in the low minors. That was the case with the Gnats this weekend. Savannah elected to skip RHP Michael Fulmer, who was scheduled to start on Sunday in favor of RHP Marcos Camarena. The 19-year old Fulmer, the Mets’ supplemental first round pick in 2011, is fine physically. However, the team is contemplating whether to shut him down for the year. As of Sunday, the Mets and Gnats staff had not made a final decision about whether Fulmer would make another start.
Fulmer threw 68 innings in high school last year and 5.1 as a professional for a total of 73.1. He’s up to 108.1 innings now, an increase of 35.1 innings over a year ago. The 19-year old has improved measurably over the course of the year, lowering his ERA from 3.35 in 11 starts and 51 innings in the first half to 2.20 over 57.1 inning and 10 starts in the second half. His strikeout rate increased from 20% in the first half to 24% as his slider improved.
Matt Reynolds, 2012’s second round pick out of Arkansas remains sidelined by a strained groin. He did not take batting practice over the weekend, so with seven games remaining in the Gnats’ season, I suspect he is done for the year. After a slow start (.215/.292/.290) he adapted and was hitting .333/.412/.500 in 16 games in August with six extra-base hits, five walks and nine strikeouts. He surely will move to St. Lucie to begin 2013.
C Cam Maron is the Gnat hitter finishing strongest. The 21-year old catcher is hitting .328/.474/.448 with 15 walks against 10 strikeouts in August to lift his season total to .301/.403/.413. Maron does many things well: he controls the strike zone and makes contact. He works with his pitchers well, and really understands their strengths and weaknesses. There are things he does not do: hit for power (an .112 ISO) or throw out baserunners as opponents were 70-for-79 89 % against him this year.he was 9-for-79 (11%). Maron started to drive the ball a little more in the second half, he hit four of his five homers after the All-Star Break and his ISO moved from .093 in the first half to .132 in the second half.