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Inside the Matchups: Parra versus Phillies, Washburn versus Rays

Updated: April 20, 2009, 2:29 PM ET
By Tom Haberstroh | Special to ESPN Insider
Manny not up to Parra

Manny Parra has struggled out of the gate this season and takes on the Phillies on Tuesday. Parra has not been throwing the first-pitch strike and consistently finds himself in an uphill battle against the hitter. He has faced 45 batters this season and his first-pitch offering has found the strike zone only 15 times, and there may be a good reason why; hitters hit .494 off his first pitch in the 2008 season. The Phillies don't chase pitches out of the zone (fifth-lowest chase percentage in the NL) and 11 of Philadelphia's 15 home runs this season have come after the pitcher got behind 1-0, so the Phillies will make Parra pay if he doesn't command the zone. Until Parra shows confidence with his first pitch, he's not a reliable starter.

For Washburn, change is good.

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