There were several good things to take away from the Diamondbacks’ 6-5 spring loss to the Colorado Rockies today. Whether we like it or not, there is definitely a roster battle for the third outfield spot and Gerardo Parra seems to be taking the initiative.
Parra went two for three with an RBI, a walk and two runs scored. He homered off Rockies starter Jhoulys Chacin, who gave up three runs, only one earned, in two innings of work. Parra got his work in center field because manager Kirk Gibson has said he would like to see Parra play that position a little better. For the time being it seems as if Parra will be used to give the other outfielders days off, but if Chris Young struggles this spring and into the season, Parra could easily take over.
For the Diamondbacks Daniel Hudson also went two innings, giving up three runs, only two of which are earned, and a strikeout. Both pitchers were victims of suspect defense with Ryan Roberts committing an error for the D-backs at third base and then Chacin and former D-back Chad Tracy committed errors for Colorado.
Hudson threw well for his spring debut and was mainly looking to throw strikes and make sure mechanically everything was sound. The score was tied going into the eighth inning when Chris Owings hit a homer off Carlos Torres. The bullpen unfortunately could not hold the lead, giving up a run in the bottom of the eighth and then a walk-off home run to win the game on the first pitch of the bottom of the ninth.
Of the relievers Arizona put into the game the pitcher who looked the sharpest was Joe Paterson, who pitched a scoreless, hitless 5th inning while striking out two. Up next for the D-backs is playing host to the Texas Rangers at Salt River Fields on Tuesday where Joe Saunders will make his spring debut along with Evan Marshall and lefty Mike Zagursky.