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Prado sets tone with selfless play

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MILWAUKEE -- When they acquired Martin Prado from the Braves in January, the D-backs talked about his reputation as an unselfish player.

Now that they've seen him up close, they are even more impressed.

"For me it's the selflessness that he shows," manager Kirk Gibson said. "I don't know that I've seen anybody have such an influence. We've all done it in our career, it's just really strong, it's a strong message."

Gibson pointed to the way that with no one out Prado grounded out to the right side of the infield in order to move Gerardo Parra over from second to third in the sixth inning of Friday's game.

Studies of the run-expectancy percentage have shown that there is a slightly better chance for a team to score if there's a runner at third with one out than a runner at second with no one out.

While there is an argument to be made that you want one of your better hitters like Prado trying to drive the ball in a situation like that, Gibson said that Prado was sending a message to his teammates.

"In the end there's going to come a time when we need to get that guy over, so it's important that we establish that if we've got to do it, we do it," Gibson said. "I think overall you're trying to establish an atmosphere of us and counting on each other. I think it's been a huge emphasis early in the season so far."

Gibson also said that there will be times that with pitchers expecting Prado to try and hit to the right side they will come in with a pitch and he will surprise them by turning on it and pulling it down the line.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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