KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) in conjunction with the American Baseball Coaches Association has announced the 2021 ABCA-Rawlings-NAIA Baseball Gold Glove Team.
Kansas Wesleyan’s Kaden Sitzman (SR/McCook, Neb.) was selected as the Gold Glove winner at the pitcher position.
The nine award winners, who were chosen based upon their defensive success, were selected by the NAIA Baseball Coaches Association All-America Committee.
“Sitzman has always been one of those pitchers who takes his fielding very serious and in practice did everything game speed,” Wesleyan head coach Bill Neale said.
Sitzman’s pitching style turns him into a defensive asset for the Coyotes. He is able to induce a lot of ground balls, and slow bouncers back to the mound, where Sitzman was able to make plays.
In 14 appearances, Sitzman did not commit an error in 30 chances for an unblemished fielding percentage. He also was part of one double play.
Pitching wise, Sitzman was 6-4 on the season with a 5.26 ERA in 65 innings pitched with 52 strikeouts.
“He developed his cutter prior to the 2020 season and we realized he was getting a lot more weak contact just in front of home plate,” Neale said. “I think that made him want to work even harder at being a strong defender from the mound since he was getting more chances during his outings.”
Sitzman is the second Coyote to receive a NAIA Gold Glove. Mike Pettibone received the honor at third base in 2009.
ABOUT THE ABCA
The ABCA, founded in 1945, is the primary professional organization for baseball coaches at the amateur level. Its over 11,000 members represent all 50 states and 25 countries. Since its initial meeting of 27 college baseball coaches in June 1945, Association membership has broadened to include eight divisions: NCAA Division I, II and III, NAIA, NJCAA, Pacific Association Division, High School and Youth. The 76th annual ABCA Convention will be held Jan. 2-5, 2020 in Nashville, Tennessee.
2021 Rawlings-ABCA Gold Glove Recipients
|P||Kaden Sitzman||Kansas Wesleyan||Sr.||McCook, Neb.|
|C||Kenny Piper||Columbia (Mo.)||Sr.||Florissant, Mo.|
|CF||Dillon Brown||Point (Ga.)||Jr.||Gulfport, Miss.|
|RF||Rougie Odor||Webber International (Fla.)||Sr.||Maracaibo, Venezuela|
|LF||Joe Weatherford||Lyon (Ark.)||RS Fr.||Flower Mound, Texas|
|SS||Gary Mattis Jr.||Tennessee Wesleyan||Jr.||Broward County, Fla.|
|3B||Dillon Plew||Lewis-Clark State (Idaho)||RS Sr.||Kennewick, Wash.|
|2B||Cody Banks||Bellevue (Neb.)||Sr.||Duvall, Wash.|
|1B||Joe Johnson||Vanguard (Calif.)||Jr.||Medford, Ore.|
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