Since coming to Louisville after signing a minor-league contract with the Cincinnati Reds on June 24th, veteran outfielder Gary Matthews, Jr. and become a steady and productive everyday player with the Louisville Bats. Matthews, a major-league journeyman who has played 12 years in the big leagues with seven different teams, debuted with the Bats on June 26th, and has helped the team put together a 12-9 record since his acquisition by hitting safely in all but two of the 18 games he has started. In all 18 of the contests, Matthews has played in center field and hit leadoff, giving Louisville an experienced anchor at the top of their order and in the middle of their outfield.

Matthews, a switch-hitter, has picked up his game even more since getting settled into his new home, as he is currently in the midst of a 10-game hitting streak. The mark, which is the longest such streak by a Louisville player this season, has helped Matthews move his average with the Bats up to .329, filling the stat sheet with 26 hits to go with three home runs, five RBIs, and three steals. Already in his brief tenure with Louisville this season, Matthews has recorded multi-hit games eight times, including two three-hit contests.

It should come as no surprise that Matthews is providing a spark at the top of the Bats’ lineup, as he has proven time and time again over the course of his career that he can be a more than capable leadoff man. The 35-year-old was an American League all-star in 2006 as a member of the Texas Rangers when he hit .313 with 44 doubles and 19 home runs. For the past three years, Matthews has been a member of the Los Angeles Angels, playing in over 100 games each season.

I added the italics…can’t believe anyone would write that.

There’s more…but I can’t bear to post it…you know what’s coming..