Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reported today on his Twitter account that the Diamondbacks and OF Gerardo Parra have agreed to a one year, $4.85 million dollar contract avoiding arbitration. Nobody wants to go to arbitration especially with Spring Training vastly approaching so it’s great that the team and G.M Kevin Towers were able to work out a deal that satisfies both sides. Parra requested $5.2 million and he was offered $4.3 million by the Snakes so they settled for a little above the midpoint. It was nice of the D’backs to get a deal done; however, if they were willing to give $116 million dollars to Masahiro Tanaka then they should be able to give their Gold Glove outfielder more than a one year, $4.85 million dollar deal.
Parra is so valuable in more ways than one. He plays impeccable defense in the outfield, saving a ton of runs and winning a lot of games for this team. Plus, he is a great leadoff hitter, getting on base and using his speed to influence what happens in a game. I don’t know why teams undervalue defense in the MLB, but gold glove caliber defense is hard to come by and the D’backs have a team filled with them led by Parra. It would be unfortunate to lose Parra to free agency, he is just too valuable to this team. The bottom line is Arizona made a huge mistake not giving him a contract extension.