Rachel Garcia

Rachel Garcia crowned 2023 AUX Champion

© Athletes Unlimited, LLC 2023 / Credit: Jade Hewitt Media
Savanna Collins
Jun 27, 2023

After the final two games were canceled due to poor air quality in the Chicago area from the Canadian wildfires on Tuesday evening, pitcher Rachel Garcia was crowned the 2023 Athletes Unlimited AUX Softball champion, finishing at the top of the 42-player leaderboard with 1,392 points.

Garcia entered the 2023 season with one goal after finishing in second place in the inaugural season of AUX Softball: to be better than last year. That left the two-way player with only one option: go out and win the title.

A third of Garcia’s points were stat points earned not only in the circle but at the plate, too. Garcia recorded a 4-1 record across 37.1 innings pitched with an AUrecord 34 strikeouts and a league-best ERA of 3.19. She also recorded a complete game on June 16 as a member of Team Filler.

She started off the season as a captain but dropped out of the top three in Series Two. Garcia came back with a vengeance, taking over first place and never relinquishing the spots, leading her own Gold squad in Series 3 and cementing herself at the top of the final leaderboard.

“I know I couldn’t have done this by myself, so I think it was just the people that I was surrounded by just this entire time – just the good and positive energy that I needed to get through this entire three weeks,” Garcia said. “I know that with the success with the people that I had around me, that that’s what pushed me to be better.

“It feels amazing … I know how much hard work I put in and just to see the outcome, even though we didn’t get to play out these last two games. But I know how much time and effort it took to to be the player that I am. It all worked out for me.”

Garcia’s offense cannot be ignored in the way it contributed to her success. In 31 at-bats she tallied a .267 average with four walks, two doubles, and a home run.

Note: Leaderboard points from Game 16 did not count toward the final point totals to ensure the number of games played among players was even.

Second Place Medalist: Aubrey Leach

Middle infielder Aubrey Leach invested in adapting her game this off-season and it paid dividends on the leaderboard to propel her to a second-place finish with 1,158 points.

She was able to get on base with power, speed and finesse. Leach recorded a .405 average with five doubles, a triple, two home runs and eight RBIs.

Third Place Medalist: Mia Davidson

Catcher Mia Davidson rounds out the medalists in third place with 1,122 points.

She tied with Taylor Edwards to lead the league in the long ball with five home runs in twelve games played. Her slugging and on-base percentage were the best in the league, logging a 1.083 OB% and a .615 SLG%.

Defensive MVP: Jessi Warren

After taking a year off from professional softball, Jessi Warren made sure fans didn’t forget about her this season. Warren dazzled fans from the hot corner all season long, earning the honor of Defensive Player of the Year. Voted on by the league’s players and faciliators, Warren was an undeniable defensive force in the second year of AUX.

In her 12 games played, she recorded eight putouts and rolled four double plays.

From barehanded throws from her knees to long-ranged lasers across the infield, Warren flashed the glove all season long. One of her highlights landed her on SportsCenter’s Top 10 but Warren had enough gems to fill the entire list.

Athletes Unlimited Softball returns to Rosemont, Ill. at Parkway Bank Sports Complex for its fourth Championship season beginning July 28. Tickets are on sale now.

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