It’s been a long time since Opening Day, and the San Francisco Giants roster has changed dramatically since the season began.
The 32-year-old signed a minor league deal with the Giants during the offseason and earned a spot on the Opening Day roster. However, he hit just .198/.278/.267 in 30 games with the team before he was designated for assignment on May 3.
He cleared waivers and was granted free agency, and two days later on May 9, he signed with the Washington Nationals.
He has since settled in as a solid fourth outfielder for a contending Nationals team, hitting .282/.331/.500 with seven doubles, five home runs and 27 RBI in 119 plate appearances.
One of the highlights of the season for Parra came shortly after he joined the Nationals when he hit a go-ahead grand slam in Los Angeles against the Dodgers on May 11. The following day, he ended a no-hit bid by Hyun-Jin Ryu with a home run.
Now the journey for Parra will come full-circle on Monday night when he returns to the same ballpark where he stood on the line for Bruce Bochy’s final home-opener at Oracle Park just a few short months ago.
In a roundabout sort of way, Parra deserves some level of credit for the breakout performances of guys like Alex Dickerson and Mike Yastrzemski. Without his early struggles, the team might not have been as active on the waiver wire or so willing to give a Triple-A standout an extended look in the majors.
It’s funny how things work out sometimes.
Now San Francisco Giants fans will have to hope that Gerardo Parra doesn’t stroll back into town and do some damage against his former team. Every game counts now as they try to chase down a wild-card berth.