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Goldschmidt, Parra prove to be iron men for D-backs

Goldschmidt, Parra prove to be iron men for D-backs

Goldschmidt, Parra prove to be iron men for D-backs

ATLANTA -- Kirk Gibson decided to give catcher Miguel Montero a day off Sunday, but the D-backs manager could not bring himself to take outfielder Gerardo Parra or first baseman Paul Goldschmidt out of the lineup.

Montero had caught 21 straight games, but with a few team off-days mixed into that stretch, Gibson felt comfortable with that schedule.

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Parra had played in 79 of the team's 80 games heading into Sunday's contest with the Braves. Other than that one game, the 26-year-old has not started in two others, but still managed to get in those games at some point.

"He's a guy that's not going to give into it, he'll fight through it," Gibson said. "Not saying I don't want to give him a day off and I won't give him a day off. I considered it and I wanted to do it today, but I just couldn't."

Part of the reason for playing him, Gibson said, was the fact that the outfield at Turner Field is large and he feels Parra is so dominant defensively that he can't afford to take his glove and arm out of the lineup.

Gibson might not have a choice given that Parra entered Sunday 1-for-20 over his last five games.

Recently Gibson called Parra into his office and the two talked with Gibson reminding him not to get too frustrated by his struggles.

"He's had tough pitches and he's gotten out on his front foot a little bit," Gibson said. "I'm sure he's tired, but with one swing, he can have a huge impact there too."

Goldschmidt has also appeared in 79 of the team's 80 games with his only complete game off coming in the second game of a doubleheader against the Rangers May 27. He did play in Game 1 that day.

The only other game that Goldschmidt didn't start was May 12, but he came on in the later innings of that one.

"How am I going to take Goldy out of there?" Gibson said. "He takes care of himself as good as you could ask. For sure, I wouldn't take him out of there today, not saying I won't have to or I won't need to. I don't ever want to push anybody too far. Sometimes you push quite far, but there is a limit for everybody."

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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