"The first time out in a while, come back here and you just try to get through that first inning. It was good," Fulmer said after throwing two scoreless innings. "I feel like I did a good job of minimizing the situation. Guy on first and second, two-out walk and being able to keep it there."
Fulmer struck out three, mixing in a few changeups and curveballs, while establishing his fastball and cutter for strikes. He finished strong at Triple-A Charlotte last season, yielding one run over his last 15 innings pitched after making some changes under the tutelage of then-Charlotte pitching coach Richard Dotson.
Saturday's debut illustrated to Fulmer that he picked up where he left off, with special attention paid to his first-inning escape.
"If you want to pitch for a long time, and continue to pitch deep into games, then you have to make a pitch when you need to. And for me to be able to do that in my first inning, it's really positive," Fulmer said. "It feels really good, especially when you are facing that lineup.
"Anybody can hurt you there, even if it is Spring Training. That's where I am right now. I had the experience last year in the big leagues and Triple-A, and I was able to minimize the situation."
Anderson likes setting the tone
Hitting leadoff doesn't appear to be the likely offensive role for Tim Anderson, who held that spot in Saturday's Cactus League opener. But the talented shortstop won't shy away from the opportunity.
"I'm trying to see a few pitches," Anderson said. "But it's just foremost, go out and just have fun first, and just get the bugs out and have fun with it. Go out and compete."
Anderson, who had a .306 on-base percentage last season, is trying to cut down on strikeouts, after fanning 117 times against 13 walks.
"I definitely want to cut down my strikeouts," Anderson said. "Just be able to set the tone in the right way, and lead this team in the right way. Do whatever I can to help this team in putting us in the best position to win a ballgame."