Duke Welker

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Duke Welker
Free agent
Born: (1986-02-10) February 10, 1986 (age 31)
Kirkland, Washington
Bats: Left Throws: Right
MLB debut
June 23, 2013, for the Pittsburgh Pirates
MLB statistics
(through 2013 season)
Win–loss record 0–0
Earned run average 0.00
Strikeouts 1
WHIP 0.00

Duke Welker (born February 10, 1986) is a professional baseball pitcher who is currently a free agent.

High school and college[edit]

Welker attended Woodinville High School in Woodinville, Washington. He was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 34th round (1023rd overall) in the 2004 Major League Baseball Draft, but chose to attend Seminole State College. He was drafted by the Mariners again, this time in the 39th round (1163rd overall) of the 2005 Major League Baseball Draft, but he did not sign again.[1] He played for the Anchorage Glacier Pilots in the Alaska Baseball League in 2006.[2] In August 2006, he transferred to the University of Arkansas,[2] where he played college baseball for the Arkansas Razorbacks baseball team in the Southeastern Conference.

Professional career[edit]

The Pittsburgh Pirates drafted Welker in the second round, with the 68th overall selection, of the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft.[1] He signed with the team on June 17, 2007.[3] The Pirates initially planned to keep Welker as a starting pitcher.[4] He struggled in his first professional seasons,[5] before achieving better results.[1] Welker was added to the Pirates' 40 man roster to protect him from the Rule 5 draft after the 2011 season.[6]

Welker was called up by the Pirates from the Triple-A Indianapolis Indians on May 8, 2013.[7] He was optioned back to Indianapolis on May 11.[8] Welker was called up again on June 20,[9] and made his major league debut three days later, against the Los Angeles Angels, pitching a scoreless eighth inning in relief.[10] He threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings in all for the Pirates before being optioned back to the minors. He maintained a 3-4 record plus a 3.25 ERA in 61 innings (41 games) with 9 saves and 64 strikeouts while in their AAA affiliate.[11]

On August 31, Welker was announced as the probable player to be named later traded to the Twins (along with Alex Presley) for Justin Morneau.[12] Because Welker was on the Pirates' 40-man roster, he was not officially traded to the Twins until October 5.[13] On November 19, Welker was traded back to the Pirates in exchange for LHP Kris Johnson.[14]

Welker had Tommy John surgery on June 5, 2014.[15] He was released by the Pirates on July 14, 2014.

On April 15, 2016, Welker signed a minor league deal with the San Francisco Giants. He was released on August 2, 2016.

Scouting report[edit]

Welker's fastball can reach 96 miles per hour (154 km/h).[1]


  1. ^ a b c d "Welker not household name, but there's hope - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette". Post-gazette.com. 2012-05-09. Retrieved 2012-05-14. 
  2. ^ a b "Diamond Hogs Welcome 23 Newcomers for 2007". August 21, 2006. 
  3. ^ "Twins Opt For Kris Johnson, Not Duke Welker, To Complete Morneau Trade". Baseball America. November 18, 2013. Retrieved October 11, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Another Duke on the horizon". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. July 22, 2007. Retrieved October 11, 2015 – via Google News. 
  5. ^ Whiteford, Mike (2010-05-17). "Power's Welker moves beyond difficult year". Charleston Gazette. Retrieved 2012-05-14. 
  6. ^ "Six minor leaguers join Pirates 40-man roster". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. November 19, 2011. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  7. ^ Singer, Tom (May 8, 2013). "Welker called up as Bucs face his hometown team". MLB.com. Retrieved September 9, 2015. 
  8. ^ "Liriano gets easy win in Pirates debut". Chicago Tribune. Reuters. May 11, 2013. Retrieved September 9, 2015. 
  9. ^ Warnemuende, Jeremy (June 20, 2013). "Reliever Welker recalled, Presley optioned". MLB.com. Retrieved September 9, 2015. 
  10. ^ "Pirates rally for three runs in 9th, then top Angels in 10". ESPN.com. Associated Press. June 23, 2013. Retrieved September 9, 2015. 
  11. ^ Seiner, Jake (November 19, 2013). "Twins, Pirates swap Triple-A hurlers". MILB.com. Retrieved September 9, 2015. 
  12. ^ Singer, Tom (August 31, 2013). "Morneau energized by atmosphere surrounding Bucs". Retrieved September 9, 2015. 
  13. ^ Bollinger, Rhett (October 5, 2013). "Twins gain lefty in swap of pitchers with Pirates". MLB.com. Retrieved September 9, 2015. 
  14. ^ Sawchik, Travis (November 19, 2013). "Pirates notebook: Bucs re-acquire pitcher Duke Welker from Twins for Kris Johnson". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. 
  15. ^ Pianovich, Stephen (June 6, 2014). "Minor Leaguer Welker has Tommy John surgery". MLB.com. Retrieved September 9, 2015. 

External links[edit]