Manny Parra: What a Difference Triple-A Can Be

James LittleContributor IJuly 9, 2009

LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 15: Manny Parra #43 of the Milwaukee Brewers throws a pitch against the Los Angeles Dodgers on August 15, 2008 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Gety Images)

Okay, it was his first game back, but this has to be great news for Ken Macha, Ryan Braun, Doug Melvin, and Brewers fans in general that Manny Parra pitched a great game Thursday afternoon.

His line today:

7.0 innings, 3 hits, 0 ER, 1 BB, and 7 K

His last three games in the majors:

1.2 innings, 6 hits, 6 ER, 3 BB, 0 K
5.2 innings, 8 hits, 5 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
4.0 innings, 11 hits, 10 ER, 2 BB, 5 K

Total: 11.1 innings, 25 hits allowed, 21 earned runs, seven walks, and nine strikeouts

That is what caused him to be sent down for almost a month in the minors. 

"[It's] disappointing, more than anything.  I know what kind of pitcher I am.  I just haven't pitched well at all," Parra said on June 13, 2009, in the locker room after being told during the game that he was going to be sent down to Triple-A Nashville.

When asked about what he planned to work on when he got down to Triple-A, Parra said, "Command." He also added that he felt uncomfortable the whole year and hadn't found anything that was working for him so far this season. Lastly, he mentioned that he needed to work on his consistency.

I was in the press room when they announced that Parra would be sent down to Triple-A on June 13.  Media personnel talked with Parra about being sent down.  I could tell he was very disappointed, but the 26-year-old southpaw was mature enough to know that he could fix his problems in the minors.

After pitching a few games in the minors, the Brewers called up Parra after posting a 1-2 record with a 2.92 ERA.

“He pitched a couple good games, and he’ll be given the opportunity to take charge of what we’d like to see him take charge of. And that’s being a guy that’s going to start for us every fifth day,” Ken Macha said.

That command he hoped to work on while at Triple-A seems to have paid off as Parra gave up only one walk on Thursday against the St. Louis Cardinals.  This could be a sign that he has turned it around. 

Pundits will insist that this was only one game, and they could be right. This might just be one game, but it is also hope that maybe some of the consistency he lost at the beginning of the season will come back.

Parra did have a perfect game going through four innings, but in the top of the fifth, Nick Stavinoha hit a single off of him. He battle his way out of the inning, allowing only two hits and no runs. 

Brewers gave him the lead in the bottom of the fifth when Mike Cameron had a RBI single to bring Prince Fielder in.

After the top of the seventh, Parra came out of the game, and he did not get the the win as Carlos Villanueva and the Brewers bullpen gave five runs in the top of the eighth. The Brewers would go on and lose the game 5-1.

Does Parra pitching well in his game back from the minors mean that the Brewers won't pursue a trade for Jarrod Washburn, Doug Davis, or even another blockbuster deal to get Roy Halladay?

It is yet to be seen.

I would like to see one more start out of Parra before Doug Melvin decides if he should add another pitcher. I would also like to see the Brewers start hitting again before Melvin bets the farm again on someone like Halladay.