Seward County Saints lefthander Jose Gonzalez joined an ever growing list of Division 1 signees today as he inked his National Letter of Intent to head to Nacogdoches, Texas to play for former Saint Johnny Cardenas and the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks.
Gonzalez will join an SFA team that won 34 games a season ago and was 20-12 in Southland Conference play. A Seward County connection to the story is the Lumberjacks current Head Coach Johnny Cardenas who played for the Saints during the 1989 and 1990 seasons before signing at TCU and moving on to professional baseball. Cardenas and the Jacks staff will hope that Gonzalez can step in right away and fill the shoes of 2010 2nd Team All-Southland pick Tyler Herriage who finished last season as SFA’s top pitcher and is expected to be their Friday night starter again this season before graduating as a senior.
As a freshman in 2010 Gonzalez went 3-4 with a 5.78 ERA in 63 inning pitched for the Saints. He threw in 14 ballgames, starting 13 of those, and striking out 45 opposing hitters. Gonzalez was on the mound at the end of the regular season for Seward when they wrapped up the 2010 Jayhawk West Crown against Colby and threw 9 innings in a pair of games during the Region VI Tournament striking out 8.
Gonzalez will be looked upon to help lead a young Seward County pitching staff and team this season as they look to defend their conference title in 2011. Expected to be in the Saints weekend rotation when the season begins, Gonzalez and his Saints will be put to the test right away as they take on defending National Champion Iowa Western February 10th at Brent Gould Field to kick off the 2011 campaign.