Eastern League Names Matt McBride Player of the Week

AKRON,
OH – Outfielder Matt McBride was honored Monday as the winner of the Eastern
League Player of the Week Award for the week ending July 4th. In
conjunction with becoming the second Aero all season to win league-wide award,
McBride is also the recipient of the third-ever Akron Aeros Player of the Week
Award. He earned these two honors after a spectacular week between June 28th
and Independence Day, smashing six home runs including a franchise-record tying
three during Akron’s win Thursday night.

McBride
starred during Akron’s weeklong road trip to Richmond and to Bowie, hitting
safely in all seven games while collecting a .370 (10-for-27) batting average.
He began his impressive week with a solo home run during Monday’s loss to the
Flying Squirrels and followed with a two-hit performance Tuesday. In the rubber
match Wednesday, he hit a crucial two-run homer in the fifth inning to help the
Aeros take the series.

Thursday
night was then the incredible performance of a lifetime for the 25-year-old
native of Bethlehem, PA. Playing first base in place of the injured Beau Mills,
McBride homered in all three of his plate appearances against Bowie Baysox
starter Ryohei Tanaka. All three shots went to the left field bleachers of
Prince George’s Stadium and as if he had not accomplished enough, he hit one of
Akron’s four home runs in Friday’s win as well.

The
Lehigh University product finished the week with four walks, an intentional
walk, two doubles, six home runs, seven runs scored and nine RBI. It was an
unbelievable performance overall as before the week, the usual right fielder
actually had not homered since May 19th at Altoona, a span of 35
games played. In the end, he lifted his OPS for the season from .686 last
Sunday to .769 after the Independence Day loss in Bowie.

The
Cleveland Indians selected McBride in the second round of the June 2006 Draft as
a catcher, and he began his professional career with Class A Mahoning Valley
later that season. He then spent 2007 with Class A Lake County, was injured for
most of 2008 and was one of the best hitters in baseball last year. He earned
the promotion to the Aeros on May 12th and at the time, led the Class
A Carolina League with a .405 batting average, 15 doubles and 36 RBI. After
playing 98 games in helping Akron win the EL Championship, he finished the
season with 99 RBI combined, the most in the Indians system.

The Akron Aeros will
award their Player of the Week honor to an individual player every Monday for
the rest of the season. In the case of a Monday closure of the team offices,
the Aeros will announce the award Tuesday morning. Akron outfielder Jerad Head
won the award last week and it will usually be a separate honor from the
Eastern League Player-Pitcher of the Week Awards. McBride and New Hampshire
Fisher Cats starter Kyle Drabek were the winners of this week’s EL Awards,
respectively.

After
a weeklong road trip, the Aeros begin their quick four-game home stand Monday
night at 7:05 p.m. against the Thunder. Fans can visit any local KeyBank branch
to find FREE ticket vouchers for the game and it is another Dollar Dog Monday
as fans can purchase $1 hot dogs Alex White (3-4, 1.72 ERA) will be on the
starting mound for Akron against Trenton’s Andrew Brackman (0-2, 4.50 ERA) in
the series opener. Tonight’s radio broadcast begins at 6:50 p.m. on Fox Sports
1350 AM as well as at www.akronaeros.com
 and for more information, please call
the Akron Aeros team  offices at (330)
253-5151.

—AEROS—

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