Pudge is going to be a professional!
WVU’s senior catcher, who played a significant role during all 4 years with the program, has been drafted in the 8th round (230th overall) by the Chicago White Sox organization.
The 2019 Second-Team All Big 12 selection and 2016 Freshman All-America Team member has been a centerpiece of the renewed Mountaineer baseball program ever since arriving on campus in 2015.
During his career at WVU, Pudge played in 211 games, had 230 hits, hit 9 home runs and drove in 108 runs. However, the area where he was most impactful won’t be seen on a stat sheet — his leadership. Gonzalez was frequently praised over the past couple years, but even more so in 2019, for his rapport with the pitching staff. Coach Mazey’s mantra for the catchers is to “make sure the pitchers have a good day”, which is obviously out of the catchers control. But with Gonzalez, he had a way to get the most out of his guys on the mound, particularly this year, when WVU had 6 different true freshmen pitching for them at various times.
The Chicago White Sox got themselves a great baseball player, but an even better person with the 230th pick. Although Pudge will face an uphill battle in making it to the South Side, his work ethic and ability to connect with his teammates and coaches will help him out in his trek through the minor leagues.
Congratulations, Ivan! Let’s go, Mountaineers!