Former Cy Young winner Bob Welch dies

 

The Sports Network

Oakland, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Bob Welch, a Cy Young winner with the Oakland Athletics, died Monday night. He was 57 years old.

The Athletics said Welch passed away in Seal Beach, California. A cause of death was unavailable.

Welch pitched for the Athletics from 1988-94 after spending 10 seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was a member of three American League pennant winners with Oakland from 1988-90, including a World Series title in 1989, and won the Cy Young after a 1990 season that included a record of 27-6. No pitcher has reached as many as 25 wins since.

"We are deeply saddened by the sudden passing of Bob Welch," said Athletics president Michael Crowley in a statement Tuesday. "He was a legendary pitcher who enjoyed many of his best seasons with the Oakland A's. He will always be a significant part of our franchise's history, and we mourn his loss. We send our greatest sympathies to his family and friends."

In 17 major league seasons, starting in 1978, Welch compiled a record of 211-146 with a 3.47 ERA. He was an All-Star in 1980 and 1990.

Welch was selected by the Dodgers with the 20th overall pick of the 1977 draft and reached the majors the following season. He helped the Dodgers to the NL pennant in 1978 and 1981.

The hard-throwing right-hander had his first signature moment in the 1978 World Series when he struck out Yankees slugger Reggie Jackson to earn the save in Game 2 at Dodger Stadium.

Welch had a postseason record of 3-3 in 17 games. He was also a member of the Dodgers' 1981 World Series championship team.

"The Los Angeles Dodgers are saddened to learn of the passing of Bob Welch," said Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten. "He was one of the greatest competitors to wear the Dodger uniform. Dodger fans will always remember his confrontation with Yankee great Reggie Jackson in Game 2 of the 1978 World Series, when the 21-year-old rookie struck out Jackson to end the game."

In addition, Welch was the pitching coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks during their 2001 World Series championship.

"This is a tragic and sad day, as Bob Welch will be remembered by everyone who knew him as a great teammate and a great friend," the Diamondbacks said in a statement. "Though he was on our major league coaching staff for just one season, it was certainly memorable, as he guided our pitching staff to a world championship and will always be a part of our history. Not only did he have a distinguished playing career, but as a coach at Arizona State University and then with the D-backs, he impacted many people's lives in a positive way and he will truly be missed."

Welch had served as a special instructor with the Athletics in recent years.

He is survived by sons Dylan (25) and Riley (23), daughter Kelly (18) and former wife Mary Ellen.

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