ROUND ROCK, Texas - Bryan LaHair of the Iowa Cubs has been named the 2011 Pacific Coast League Most Valuable Player, the league announced today.
LaHair was voted the PCL's MVP - the 75th in league history - after a balloting of the 16 field managers as well as media representatives from across the league.
LaHair, 28, has hit 38 home runs this season, which not only lead the PCL but all of Minor League Baseball. The left-handed slugger hit his 38th homer on August 30th, setting a new franchise record for the I-Cubs, which was previously set by Joe Hicks in 1984.
In addition to leading the league in home runs, the Massachusetts native is pacing the PCL in runs batted in (109), extra-base hits (76) and total bases (303). LaHair, whose .331 batting average is seventh-best in the PCL, is also among the top-five for slugging percentage (2nd, .664), OPS (2nd, 1.070), doubles (4th, 38) and runs scored (5th, 91).
Historically, LaHair's season ranks among the best as well. Seattle's 39th-round selection from the 2002 First-Year Player Draft is only the seventh player in the last 15 PCL seasons to tally 300 or more total bases while his 76 extra-base hits are the most by a PCL hitter since Brooks Conrad registered 79 in 2006.
The PCL's starting first baseman in the 2011 Triple-A All-Star Game was named to the All-PCL Team earlier this week.
LaHair becomes the second Iowa Cubs player to be named PCL MVP after Geovany Soto was the first to earn the honor for the I-Cubs in 2007. LaHair is the third player in Iowa Cubs franchise history to be awarded a league's most valuable player award as outfielder Eddie Zambrano was named the MVP of the American Association in 1993.
Among the others to receive votes for the Most Valuable Player award were David Cooper (Las Vegas), Collin Cowgill (Reno), Chris Davis (Round Rock), Johnny Giavotella (Omaha), Brad Nelson (Round Rock), Brett Pill (Fresno), and Anthony Rizzo (Tucson).
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.