Can Gerardo Parra keep up the pace? 

May, 23, 2013
5/23/13
1:03
PM ET

One of the main reasons it was easy to be skeptical about whether Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Gerardo Parra would be able to continue his exceptional season was the competition on his own team. After all, the Diamondbacks figured to use lefty hitting slugger Jason Kubel in left field, while rookie Adam Eaton would get on base and run and handle center field, and Cody Ross wasn’t given an exorbitant three-year contract to merely pinch hit. However, as May winds down none of Arizona's expected starting outfielders are playing a significant role for the team, if any at all, and Parra keeps on producing.

In fact, Parra is doing so well that he’s actually tied for second in all of baseball in WAR (wins above replacement), behind only Cincinnati Reds first baseman/walk machine Joey Votto, and that order was reversed entering Wednesday. Triple Crown threat Miguel Cabrera, incidentally, is tied for fifth, a shade behind Parra, who garners significant value from excellent defense. From a pure fantasy aspect, Parra has been a nice surprise, going from undrafted in most leagues to close to top-20 outfielder status.

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Gerardo Parra
Matt Kartozian/USA TODAY Sports Gerardo Parra is best known for his defense, but his offense has come around so far this year.