"He's our best option and he's a good option," Gonzalez said. "I don't know if we have another option on our club as good as him."
Heyward batted .206 with a .297 on-base percentage in the 34 games he played through May 10. In the 17 games that have followed entering Friday, he has batted .318 with a .400 on-base percentage and three home runs, two of which have been hit this week.
"I see him continuing to do that," Gonzalez said. "He's about as steady as they come when he's healthy. He'll keep getting a hit here and there and getting on base. If you make a mistake, he'll run you out of the ballpark. By the end of the year, he'll be at .285 with his normal numbers."
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.