Parra has been bothered by a stiff back and has not been able to participate in any baseball activities, but after a cortisone shot earlier in the week, he was cleared to play catch from 75 feet Saturday -- and he was pleased with the results.
"It went really well," Parra said. "I'm feeling better. There's a slow, day-to-day, tentative progression. Try to get what we can in without aggravating anything. Move slow. Come in every day and assess where we're at. That's what it sounds like."
Manager Ron Roenicke said that Parra would play catch again Sunday, and if all goes well, he'll move on to long toss. Parra is eager to get back on a mound, but he's keeping his focus on whatever he's scheduled for when he arrives at the ballpark each day.
"It seems like any time I want to get too far ahead of myself, it's a waste," Parra said. "I've been set back a couple times already. But since I've had this shot, I've felt a significant difference in my back. I just hope it continues to feel that way."
With fewer than two weeks to go before the season starts, it's clear to Parra that he won't have time to pitch his way onto the Opening Day roster, where he would have been a prime candidate to fill Zack Greinke's spot in the rotation.
"It wouldn't be beneficial to the team," Parra said. "I haven't been out there to face one hitter. It's so funny, because you want to be ready to go for Opening Day. There's so much excitement involved. But really, the whole season is so much more important than Opening Day."