PHOENIX -- You wouldn't understand if he tried to explain it to you.
That's how D-backs manager Kirk Gibson sums up penciling in his lineup every day.
"You really wouldn't," he said. "There's so many things that go into this little crazy mind of mine. You just process it and process [the information] until you feel it."
The 55-year-old skipper said he gets to the park around noon each day, watches film, looks at numbers, player matrices -- where he logs their playing time -- and does it all over again.
"I ran into [bench coach Alan] Trammell at coffee today, we talked a little bit about it," he said of Wednesday's lineup, which included Chris Young, Ryan Roberts and Paul Goldschmidt a day after they were given a rest.
"Then I write a lineup and sit it on my desk, and Tram will come by and he'll look around and say, 'Got one? You thinking about one?' And then eventually I have a white card I'll put out there."
Gibson noted that among other things, matchups and a real commitment to get his whole team action come into play.
"Those guys all felt good about who they were and how they were going to compete," Gibson said of Tuesday night's substitutions. "And that's part of our strength."
Message received: Parra excelling for Arizona
PHOENIX -- D-backs manager Kirk Gibson has spoken about how it's becoming time for left fielder Gerardo Parra to step up.
It seems that Parra has received the message.
In Tuesday night's 9-4 victory over the Rockies, Parra recorded a career-high four hits and fell a home run short of the cycle.
"I feel good," Parra said. "But when you win, everything is good."
After playing sparingly early in the season, the 24-year-old has emerged as the D-backs' everyday left fielder and has recorded three multi-hit games in his past six.
As a result, Parra has found his way into the No. 2 hole more often.
"I'm good with whatever," Parra said. "In the top or the bottom, when I see that I'm in the lineup, that's when I'm happy. I play the same way no matter which spot I'm in."
His arm in left field has also been a big factor for the D-backs defensively, as teams are shying away from taking the extra base or trying to tag up on him. Parra recorded his ninth outfield assist by throwing out Colorado's Dexter Fowler in Wednesday's first inning.
"I'm ready for everything," Parra said. "If a guy's running or not, I'll be ready."
Clear head has Cowgill riding high at plate
PHOENIX -- Collin Cowgill credits his recent success to a clear head.
"It was more about pressure than anything," Cowgill said. "I put a lot of it on myself.
So the 25-year-old Cowgill found someone to take it off.
After meeting with Peter Crone, the D-backs' mental skills coach, the outfielder recorded multi-hit games in back-to-back starts, including a career-high four-hit performance on Sunday against the Padres.
"He just tried to help me find a way to relax and not worry about what's already happened, because it's not going anywhere, it's already on paper," Cowgill said. "He said, 'Just stop thinking about that. It's a waste of energy and a waste of time.'"
Cowgill is hitting .217 (13-for-60) in his young Major League career, but Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said that he could see a certain sense of calm in Cowgill -- beginning in Sunday's game, in which he notched his first career home run.
"I felt a lot more calm, a lot more relaxed and I saw the ball better," Cowgill said. "I've been talking to Peter and I just kind of decided to forget whatever's happened, because it's the past and there's no sense in looking at it any more."
Also helping were the consistent at-bats, after Cowgill received only one plate appearance in his previous three games.
"It's nice to know that if you don't get a hit in your first at-bat, you have a couple more to get back in the swing," Cowgill said.
Anthony Fenech is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.