Pirates All 40: Can Jarlín Garcia Provide Needed Lefty Stability?
This is one in a series of stories looking at members of the Pittsburgh Pirates 40-man roster.
For the Pittsburgh Pirates and their 62-100 showing in 2022, there were a number of weak spots en route to clinching their second-straight 100-loss season.
One of the problems that was apparent as the Pirates struggled last year was left-handed pitching.
Outside of Jose Quintana, who was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals during the trade deadline, the team wasn’t able to receive much contributions from their southpaws.
Manny Bañuelos, who was the only left-handed pitcher on the active roster for the final game of the regular season, finished the year with a 4.96 ERA while in a Pirates’ uniform.
In the beginning of the offseason, Bañuelos was designated for assignment, leaving the Pirates with no lefty pitchers on their 40-man roster.
General manager Ben Cherington knew that this was a big area that needed to be addressed in the offseason, and he did just that during the Winter Meetings.
The Pirates agreed to a one-year deal with left-hander Jarlín Garcia, a deal which was finalized at the end of December and comes with a club option for the 2024 season.
Garcia, who recently celebrated his 30th birthday, has spent six years in the big leagues — three each with the Miami Marlins and San Francisco Giants.
For his career, Garcia is 17-15 with a 3.61 ERA in 322 innings across 285 appearances.
Over the last four seasons, Garcia has been especially effective out of the bullpen.
From 2019-22, Garcia is fourth among all major league left-handed relivers with a 2.89 ERA, trailing only Aaron Loup, Aaron Bummer and Lucas Luetge.
He’s also been a very durable pitcher throughout his six-year career. His 288 innings as a reliver since debuting in 2017 ranks fifth-most amongst southpaws behind Brad Hand, Josh Hader, Taylor Rogers and Andrew Chafin.
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Between his results on the mound and his reliability in terms of being durable, Garcia is exactly the type of left-hander the Pirates needed to add this offseason.
Outside of Garcia, the Pirates signed Rich Hill and selected Jose Hernandez in the Rule 5 draft, giving them three left-handed pitching additions this winter.
While Hill will be tasked with helping to anchor the starting rotation, it will be Garcia who will be the go-to lefty option out of the bullpen for manager Derek Shelton.
Expect to see plenty of Garcia out of the bullpen this season for Pittsburgh.