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Norkel’s Tony Gonsolin potential game 4 starter.

It was early in the 2012 Sek-Joaquin section play-off game when Tony Gonzalez of Wakawali High School was launched into orbit.

The Bulldogs were playing Alec Guru, a perennial force with four players who will be on the big league rosters for the 2021 season. One of them was Rowdy Tailles, a left-handed strapped heater that played for the Milwaukee Brewers.

Telles offered Gonsolin, running the ball well over a 315-foot fence at Unionfield on the Sacramento City College campus, the ball landed at a distance on the softball field.

Stuart Cleary, then a junior university coach in Vakoli whose son was a close friend and colleague of Gonsolin, remembers it as much as he came later to run the house.

“It was just such a big, huge bomb,” Cleary said Monday. Tony shrugged and didn’t bother. We eliminated Alec Guru and moved on.

Gonzalez, a handsome fair-haired man who had hoped for a career while at Vacaville and St. Mary’s College, is a potential Game 4 starter against the Giants in the National League Division Series on Tuesday night. He has a 4-1 record with an average of 3.23 and is healthy after two separate scars on the list of injuries with shoulder inflammation.

The Dodgers, who are also considering bringing Game 1 starter Walker Boehler back to a three-day rest, are in a game at the Dodgers Stadium after a 1-0 defeat to the Giants on Monday night. If the boiler starts, Gonsolin will be in line for the middle support role.

Gonzalez will be under a lot more pressure than a 7-3 win over Alec Grove, and a sold-out crowd that he has never experienced at St. Mary’s will not let him show up. As of Monday afternoon, Gonzalez had not been told he would start, but his reaction to the prospect came with the same chill he did with the Tele’s Home Run for Advocacy.

“It’s just another start, whenever I pitch,” Gonsolin told the media at a press conference Wednesday. “But yes, there is another chance to get out and pitch and strike and hopefully come with a win.”

Gonsolin competed in two World Series games for the Dodgers against Tampa Bay last season, leading 0-1 with a 6.00 ERA.

At 6 feet 3, 205 pounds, Gonzalez played a short stop and batted third for Vacouli. Pitching was a way to pass the time between bat bills.

Cleary, now a university coach in Wakawali, had a batting cage in her backyard. Gonzalez would come to terms with his sons Gordy and Tom and love the process of getting better.

“He played on the travel ball team like my youngest son before high school, and he was obviously still the best player,” said Cleary. “He could run faster, he could hit the ball harder, he could throw harder. I know it’s a used stereotype, but he’s a grinder. He accepts practice. The only thing I know is that he never wanted to be a baseball player.

Career.305 With 11 home runs and 77 RBIs at Center Marys, Gonzalez was approached by Eric Valenzuela, who took over the program in his second year, about pitching in addition to his duties at the outfield. Valencia is now head coach at Long Beach State.

“When I got the job, we were really light-hearted, and when I found out he had some pitches in high school, I kicked him out,” Valencuela said. “He’s super athletic and he has a good arm. He was rough but we needed corpses. He picked him up very well. He was a competitor who could help us if we made him strike.”

Gonzalez developed into a weekend starter, with lead starter Corbin Burns, an All-Star starter for the Milwaukee Brewers. In 2016, the Giles won the Conference Championship and advanced to the College World Series Regional for the first time in the program’s history.

Searched as both an outfielder and a pitcher, Gonzalez was the ninth-round draft pick as a pitcher in 2016 by the Dodgers.

“I always felt that the mound was going to be his future,” said Valenzuela. It’s more upside down. ”

Gonsolin can see where his experience at the plate has helped him on the mound.

“I was a hitter on one occasion, so I learned the heater aspect of attacking a pitcher, so I can use it to attack the hitters or plan what the hitters are thinking. Coins. I get a little bit on both sides of the ball, which is kind of good.

Personally, Gonzalez is seemingly frivolous, which is why he returned to Vakoli to work in high school and meet family and friends. He is known for his love of cats, which became a national story during last year’s World Series. He wore a variety of cat T-shirts, announcing that Saturday was actually “Caterday” and that he wore the shirt under his jersey on sports days.

During a visit to Cleary Home over Christmas, Gonsolin joined the family in the backyard, where they talked about everything except baseball.

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