JONESBORO, Ark. (6/25/18) – Arkansas State pitcher Bradey Welsh has signed a free agent contract with the Atlanta Braves and has reported to the Danville Braves, the organization’s Rookie League affiliate in the Appalachian League.

A junior this past season, Welsh will forego his senior season and becomes the second A-State hurler to enter professional baseball this summer after Peyton Culbertson was drafted by the Miami Marlins in the eighth round of the MLB Draft. He is now the 13th pitcher (10 drafted and three undrafted free agents) during head coach Tommy Raffo’s tenure to go on to play affiliated baseball.

“I just want to thank my family and friends for supporting me my whole life to get me to where I am today,” Welsh said. “They all have been there for me through everything and I couldn’t be more blessed. It has been an amazing journey at Arkansas State and I want to thank all the coaches for being there for me and showing me how to get better every day. I can’t wait to start a new chapter in my life with the Braves and continuing playing the game I love.”

A native of Marshfield, Mo., Welsh tossed 149 innings in his career with 23 starts in 38 career appearances. The last 130.2 innings pitched were after he became a starter during the 2017 campaign and he posted a 6-6 record with a 4.55 ERA and 102 strikeouts in that time frame. He ends his collegiate career with 120 strikeouts and a 7-7 mark.

“Congratulations to Bradey first of all,” stated Raffo. “Bradey continues a strong tradition of pitchers into the professional ranks from Arkansas State. We wish him the best of success.”

Welsh started 14 games in 2018, tied for most on the team, and led the Red Wolves with 82.2 innings pitched. The right-hander punched out a team-high 70 batters against 19 walks and held opposing hitters to a .263 batting average.

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