Photo Credit: Andy Shupe, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
Charlie Welch was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 2021 Major League Baseball Draft. Welch, a 19th round pick, was assigned to the ACL Mariners at the end of July and tore it up. During his time there, he hit a whopping .348 with an on-base percentage of .466 and a slugging percentage of .587. Charlie’s OPS (on base plus slugging) was an astonishing 1.052. This truly showed that Welch was an amazing baseball player with potential. Everyone was wondering what the future held for this young man.
Seattle Sports Union was recently honored to meet this young man after a baseball game where he hit a home run and reached base three times. A game where he helped lead his team to victory. He graciously let us get to know a little bit more about the life of Charlie Welch.
SSU: Charlie, nice game tonight! You reached base three times, including a home run that helped your team to victory. How do you feel?
CW: I feel good. I had been struggling but I went back to the basics and approached the game looking to start a new streak and I felt I accomplished that this evening. It was a great team win.
SSU: We gotta ask, what is like catching Adam Macko? It cannot be easy. He has some amazing stuff, with all his breaking balls mixed in. What are your thoughts?
CW: Adam has outstanding stuff and no it is not easy for anyone of us, haha. He has major league level stuff when his game is on, Adam is unhittable when he is having a great baseball game. Macko is a great guy and is fun to be around.
SSU: Last June of 2021 there is a viral video on the internet. It shows you coming off the bench and hitting a 3-run home run to beat Nebraska in the playoffs. The game was at your home stadium in front of 14,000 fans. Tell us about that experience.
CW: That was probably the most exciting and favorite baseball moment of my young career (besides being drafted by the Seattle Mariners.) In front of over 14,000 fans, the noise level was like playing in a major league stadium. When they erupted, nobody could hear a thing. What a great experience. The fans there are so dedicated and enthusiastic. It was such a wonderful moment that I will never forget.
SSU: You grew up in Florida?
CW: Yes. I was born in Kansas City. We moved to St. Petersburg, Florida when I was 7 years old, and the rest is history.
SSU: When did you start playing baseball? Did you always play the position of Catcher?
CW: All my life since I can remember. My Dad pitched to me in the backyard when I was really young, and it went from there. I played all positions until I hit high school and that is where I settled into the position of catcher.
SSU: Did you play summer baseball? What Colleges did you attend besides Arkansas?
CW: Oh yes. I played summer baseball through my Junior year. After my first year in college, I played in the Cape Cod league. I played in the south in the state of Texas after my Sophomore year, and I played in Florida after my Junior year up until the Major League Baseball Draft. I attended Pepperdine my first year, St. Johns River State College my Sophomore year and Arkansas my Junior year.
SSU: Where were you on draft day?
CW: I was at home actually. After working out I had made some food. It was day three of the draft and my friends and family had told me that there was still a chance to get drafted. I got a little sleepy after eating, so I headed to my room for a nap. On my way I got a phone call from the Mariners telling me that they were going to draft me. I was ecstatic and ready to sign up!
SSU: Did you know the Mariners were interested in you?
CW: They had contacted me along with a couple of other teams prior to the draft but it was nothing major. I guess they liked what they saw, because they used their 19th round pick on me.
SSU: What is with you and pinch hitting? You came to bat seven hits in eleven at bats when you played Nebraska last June. And what did you do? You hit a 3-run home run to win the ball game 6-3 to help your team advance and finish the season as a pinch-hitter eight hits in twelve at bats. What is your secret?
CW: (Laughs) Great question, I do not know. Perhaps I am just focusing in on the baseball. I really do not know. I knew coming in to play at Arkansas I would be the second string and get to play more at DH and pinch hitting. I guess I developed that mentality. It is definitely not easy to pinch hit in this game of baseball for anyone.
SSU: What was your major in college and how do you plan to use that when you retire in twenty plus years?
CW: I majored in Business. I am really not sure what I will do, I like computer science…but you will be the first to know when I retire from this game.
SSU: We got to ask. What is with these baseball bats and logo? Is there a story behind this?
CW: These are bats made by Birdman Bats. I recently switched. Spencer Packard and Tyler Keenan use these and I figured it was a time for a change.
SSU: Who was your favorite sports athlete growing up and who was your favorite MLB athlete then and now?
CW: Kobe Bryant was my favorite athlete growing up for obvious reasons. My favorite MLB athlete was Albert Pujols, and my favorite MLB athlete today is Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
SSU: What has impressed you about playing in the city of Everett?
CW: I love it here. I am definitely not used to playing in the Pacific Northwest. It is so beautiful here. The tall trees and the mountains are all new to me. The weather is starting to warm up too. I cannot wait for what summer will bring to us.
SSU: What is your favorite baseball field to play at besides Funko Field here in beautiful Everett, Washington?
CW: It is definitely Baum-Walker Field at the University of Arkansas. What a memorable experience it was playing in a sold-out crowd it seemed like every night.
SSU: What is your favorite sports movie of all time?
CW: It is a toss-up between Benchwarmers and Money Ball. It’s probably Money Ball, both were great movies.
SSU: What would your teammates and coaches say about you?
CW: They would say I am a hard worker and I have a dry sense of humor.
SSU: What Hollywood actor is playing the role of Charlie Welch when they make your life story?
CW: That is a very tough question, and I do not know too many actors. I guess probably Will Ferrell(laughs).
Charlie Welch, can we say you’re are one heck of a ball player and a great human being. We cannot wait to watch your career progress up the MLB ladder. Best of luck to you, young man. The city of Everett is blessed to have you a part of the Everett AquaSox baseball team. Go Frogs!
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