Jarrod Parker, 20, went a combined 5-6 with a 3.14 ERA (34 ER in 97.1 IP) in 20 starts at Single-A Visalia and Double-A Mobile this season. In four starts at Visalia, he was 1-0 with a 0.95 ER (2 ER in 19.0 IP). In 16 starts at Mobile, he was 4-6 with a 3.68 ERA (32 ER in 78.1 IP).
Parker went on the disabled list twice this season. From June 14-24, the hard-throwing prospect was out with a right wrist contusion suffered when a line drive hit him in his pitching arm. On August 17, Parker was disabled for the remainder of the season with right elbow inflammation.
"I'm nervous going into surgery," Parker told MLB.com. "I've never had any major surgery. But I'm also relieved. You won't have to hold back [once you're healthy]. You'll feel better, you'll feel free."
The D-backs' first-round selection (ninth overall) in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft is 17-11 with a 3.31 ERA (79 ER in 215.0 IP) in 44 starts over two seasons, holding opponents to a .253 average with 71 walks and 212 strikeouts. He will almost certainly miss the entire 2010 season while rehabilitating his elbow.
"I'm going to work my butt off to get back," he promised. "A realistic goal would be [the 2010 instructional league], but I'm also realizing you can't always come back that quickly. I figure by spring training 2011, that will be 14-to-15 months after the surgery, I'll be 100 percent."
Parker remains unquestionably the top prospect in the organization despite the scheduled surgery.
"I'm not alarmed. It's almost common place today," D-backs farm director Mike Berger said. "You don't want to see anyone undergo surgery, but an elbow certainly beats a shoulder. With the track record of this surgery, I'm very optimistic."
"Most important, knowing the type of player having it helps," continued Berger. "Nobody works like him. He will do everything within his power to get back to 100 percent."
Are you a full member of FutureBacks.com? If not, then you are missing out on the top Diamondbacks coverage we provide to our premium members, as well as full access to over 400 other Scout.com sites. Join us today!