ANAHEIM, Calif. – Striking out the first batter you face in the major leagues? Not bad.
On three pitches? Impressive.
When it’s likely Hall of Famer Albert Pujols? Whoa, there, Carson Fulmer.
That’s what the White Sox’ No. 8 overall pick in the 2015 draft will be able to tell his grandchildren one day. And he might also remind them that Pujols hit two home runs in his first two at-bat that day, the second one tying him for 10th with Frank Robinson on the all-time extra-base hits list.
And he should add that the Pujols strikeout (he couldn’t check his swing on the third one) was one of two in his outing covering two scoreless innings in which he gave up a soft single to Gregoria Petit and hit one batter (Andrelton Simmons).
“He’s one of the game’s best,’’ Fulmer said. “But I’m just trying to stick to my approach like I always do and try not to necessarily think about who is in the box. Obviously you have a ton of respect for a guy like that.’’
Fulmer, called up from AA Birmingham Friday, pitched the seventh and eighth innings of an 8-1 Sox loss. During the singing of “God Bless America’’ he said he was able to gather himself before trotting in from the bullpen. He knew he had Pujols first.
“See him step in the box, especially with my growing up watching him play, it was a special moment,’’ Fulmer said.
Fulmer has more than one souvenir baseball, enough to give at least one to his parents who were in attendance.