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Top Tigers prospect Michael Fulmer called up with Shane Greene headed for the DL

Fulmer makes his start on the road in Minnesota.

Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

DETROIT -- Shane Greene is indeed headed to the disabled list. Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus confirmed after Tuesday night's win at Comerica Park, that Greene will be placed on the DL and that top prospect Michael Fulmer is being called up Fulmer will get the start on Friday in Minnesota versus the Twins.

"There's really no plan of pitching (Fulmer) anything other than Friday," Ausmus said after the game. "We'll see how far he goes (into the game) and decide after that."

Greene's DL stint will get backdated to Monday. Greene had been healing from a scabbed over blister from his blood clot scare in 2015. During his last start on April 24, the scab became irritated again and despite closing it up with some glue, burst open on a pitch in the fourth inning. Unable to continue, the Tigers removed Greene from the game.

At the time, the team wouldn't say whether he was headed for the DL since not all blisters are bad enough to warrant a visit. However, the burst blister hasn't healed in time and because he'll be formally placed on the DL that means he'll be missing a minimum of two starts. Whether the Tigers retain Fulmer for both starts is yet to be seen.

Fulmer is the Tigers' No. 1 prospect in their minor league system. He came to the organization in 2015 when the team traded leftfielder Yoenis Cespedes to the New York Mets at the trade deadline for him, and now former Tiger Luis Cessa (he's since been traded to the New York Yankees for Justin Wilson).

When Fulmer came to the Tigers via trade, he was sent to Double-A Erie, where he put up a 2.84 ERA in 31 2/3 innings pitched, striking out 33 for an opposing batting average of .231. During the spring, Bless You Boys profiled Fulmer's potential, and so far this year Fulmer has impressed.

"I've talked to Lloyd McClendon a number of times about him," Ausmus said. "I know he really likes him. He's got stuff for sure. He throws 95 he's got a wipeout-type slider, but the big leagues is a little different. These guys have seen stuff like his before, so you do have to locate your pitches. But it certainly doesn't hurt to have that type of arsenal."

Through three games with the Toledo Mud Hens this season, Fulmer has 4.11 ERA across 15 1/3 innings pitches, allowing eight runs on 16 hits and tallying 20 strikeouts. However, it was his latest start that tacked him with the higher totals as he allowed six of those runs during that start on April 22.

With Greene gone, the already in flux starting rotation will have a higher need of a strong bullpen and plenty of run support. The latter hasn't been a problem, but until Monday night, the offense has failed to drive in runs. That will need to change if the Tigers are going to win going forward, regardless of who's starting.