By Kervy Robles, Sports Editor
A new Oklahoma Baptist record was set when senior pitcher Jinny Parra earned his 36th career win during the match against Southwestern Oklahoma State.
“Seeing my name breaking such an important record makes feel that all my hard work paid off,” Parra said. “I am thankful for OBU and coaches that always trusted my abilities in the field.”
Although Parra is on a successful path now, he remembers his first steps in the sport of baseball in his natal Dominican Republic.
“I was nine years old when I started playing baseball in the streets of Santiago,” Parra said.
“My grandfather used to watch me play every weekend and he is the one who introduced me to this sport.”
Parra’s remarkable skills in the pitch awake the interest of head coach Bobby Cox in 2013.
“Coach Bobby wanted me to come to U.S. to play baseball and get a college career,” Parra said. “Even though I was already studying accounting for two years I knew God had a plan for me, and that plan was here at OBU.”
The arrival of Parra to the Bison had a quick impact, however the process of adaptation between different cultures did not result simple.
“It was very difficult to adapt to a country where I could not speak the language,” Parra said.
“At the beginning, I could not communicate with my coaches but I knew I had to put a lot of effort to speak English because it would help me to become a successful player.”
Little by little, Parra has been showing a significant improvement noticed by the coaching staff.
“Jinny has been a model student athlete on and off the field during his time here,” Cox said.
“I am proud to have been able to watch him grow in the program.”
Every year the outstanding performances in the pitch, led Parra to a step closer to break the OBU record for career wins.
“Last year, the coaches told me I was getting closer to break the record but I tried to take the challenge with perseverance,” Parra said.
“My mother always tells me that I have to pray and put everything in God’s hand so I let the moment come to me and I kept working.”
With his 36th college career victory, Parra breaks a record previously set by OBU legends David Hocking and Darrin Fowler.
“David and Darrin were tremendous pitchers and breaking the all- time record is a great accomplishment,” Cox said.
“I have a great deal of respect for Jinny, his work ethic and desire to better himself has been inspirational.”
However, Parra takes the compliments with humility and acknowledges coach Cox to play an essential role in his discipline inside the pitch.
“Bobby Cox is an important person in my life because without his advices, I would not have made it this far,” Parra said.
“I also hope I can encourage a sense of work ethic to younger players and see how fundamental is to be disciplined in the field.”
Finally, Parra expects the future with big goals and optimism.
“My expectation is to get drafted at the end of the season,” Parra said. “I know I gave my 100 percent at the field and I would make my family very proud.”
Pictures are provided by the OBU Athletics Deparment. Above and below: Jinny earned 36th career win.