CHICAGO -A former American League Rookie of the Year is starting a new chapter of his career on the north side of Chicago in 2023.
Per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Cubs have an agreement with free agent pitcher Michael Fulmer. No terms of the deal have been released and the team has yet to confirm the move.
This comes less than a week before pitchers and catchers report to Mesa for spring training on February 15.
A starter earlier in his career, Fulmer has pitched mostly out of the bullpen the last two seasons, spending the 2022 campaign with the Tigers and the Twins. He had a 3.20 ERA in 41 appearances for Detroit with 39 strikeouts compared to 20 walks before he was traded to Minnesota on August 2.
With the Twins, he had a 3.70 ERA in 26 appearances with 22 strikeouts compared to eight walks.
That was the first time that Fulmer had pitched at the major league level outside of the Tigers, where he had a great debut in 2016. Then a full time starter, Fulmer went 11-7 with a 3.06 ERA in Detroit to win the American League Rookie of the Year award. He was named an All-Star in 2017 when he had a 3.83 ERA with a 10-12 record.
Fulmer slipped in 2018 as he went 3-12 with a 4.69 ERA and then had Tommy John surgery in the spring of 2019 that cost him that entire season.
He made ten starts during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, posting an 8.78 ERA in 27.2 innings of work with the Tigers. Fulmer made his move primarily to the bullpen in 2021 with 48 of his 52 appearances coming as a reliever.
He found success in that role, posting a 2.97 ERA with 14 saves as he struck out 73 batters compared to 20 walks with the Tigers.