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Good article about Gonzo and his quest for gold...


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Gonzalez: good as Gold?






Marlins infield coach Perry Hill, who watched Luis Castillo and Derrek Lee earn Gold Gloves under his tutelage last year, is pushing shortstop Alex Gonzalez for the award this season.


''He's the best shortstop in the league, and he was last year, too,'' said Hill, widely regarded as the best infield coach in the majors. ``[but] for some reason or another, he doesn't get the attention that the other top-flight guys do.''


Gonzalez's seven errors are the second-fewest in the majors among shortstops who have played at least 100 games. His zone rating -- the percentage of balls fielded in his defensive zone -- is the highest in the National League.


But in a recent poll of league managers conducted by Baseball America, Gonzalez wasn't ranked among the NL's top three shortstops.


''He clearly belongs in the Gold Glove conversation,'' said teammate Damion Easley, who rates Gonzalez ahead of every other shortstop he has played with, including three-time Gold Glove winner Rey Ordo?ez.


''He's clearly a top-notch shortstop,'' Easley said of Ordo?ez, ``but he's no better than Gonzo.''


Gold Gloves are awarded based on balloting by league coaches, and Hill said Gonzalez might be overlooked because the unbalanced schedule means 11 staffs see him just six times a year. Plus, Gonzalez is batting just .229, the lowest average among regular shortstops, which costs him some national attention.


''I don't understand that,'' Easley said. ``The Gold Glove is . . . not an offensive award.''



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