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Welch caps magical year with league honor
No-hitter, unbeaten season highlight Pitcher of the Year accolade, Sydney's Oxspring finishes second
02/11/2011 2:42 PM ET
David Welch pitched the league's first no-hitter on 4 February at BOP.
David Welch pitched the league's first no-hitter on 4 February at BOP. (SMP Images/ABL)
The Sydney Blue Sox may not be competing in Game 1 of the Delta Air Lines ABL Championship Series today between the 'Alcohol Think Again' Perth Heat and the Adelaide 'ETSA" Bite, but they have received some consolation with David Welch being named the ABL's Pitcher of the Year.

Welch, who made history one week ago after pitching the ABL's first no-hitter, is the third Blue Sox player to win an award after Trent Schmutter was named the Rookie of the Year, and Dae-Sung Koo the Reliever of the Year.

Welch was outstanding for Sydney during the regular season, accumulating a 5-0 win-loss record while recording the ABL's lowest ERA at 1.44. Welch also struck out 59 opposition batters.

Blue Sox teammate and Detroit Tigers signing Chris Oxspring tallied the second highest number of votes for the award, while Perth's Daniel Schmidt was third.

Schmidt will be in action today in Game 1 of the Delta Air Line ABL Championship series as the starting pitcher for the Perth Heat, while Mark Brackman will be taking to the mound for the Adelaide Bite.

With an outstanding 6-3 win-loss record during the regular season accompanied by a 2.97 ERA, Schmidt established himself as Perth's go-to ace and a player who will not be overawed by Adelaide's powerful batting line-up.

Adelaide's Brackman won two games for the Bite during the regular season, and in Game 3 of the second round of the Delta Air Lines Playoffs against Sydney, showed enormous poise to head to the mound as a reliver with the scores tied in the 14th inning to help his team to an epic victory.

The Championship Series action starts from 4.00pm Perth time (7.00pm EDST) with the game being shown live on FOX SPORTS.

Game 2 will be played on Saturday 12 February from 4.00pm local time, while Game 3, if required, will start at midday on Sunday 13 February.

ABL awards are decided by the submission of votes by all ABL coaches, plus selected media, scouts and staff who have closely followed the ABL season.

ABL Pitcher of the Year voting results: 1st - David Welch, Sydney (88 votes); 2nd - Chris Oxspring, Sydney (58 votes); 3rd - Daniel Schmidt, Perth (25 votes)

This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.