Harlan and Hibbing Retire, Pirates Add Two Right-Handed Pitchers From Dominican

Two pitchers from the Pittsburgh Pirates’ organization retired this off-season, while the Pirates recently added two right-handed pitchers from the Dominican.

Lefty Thomas Harlan was a 13th round pick from the 2012 draft, who spent the last two seasons with the Altoona Curve. Harlan was a soft-tossing lefty, who put up decent results as a swing-man, filling in as a starter or long reliever when needed. The Pirates assigned him to the Arizona Fall League after the 2014 season, so they felt there was some potential. Harlan turned 26 yesterday, so he was on the old side for a prospect, and he was likely headed back to Altoona’s bullpen if he returned.

Nick Hibbing was drafted by the Pirates in the 16th round last year, four years after they drafted him out of high school. He pitched well in Morgantown’s bullpen, but he also turned 23 before the end of the season. He likely would have had a limited role in West Virginia’s bullpen this season.

The Pirates recently added two right-handed pitchers from the Dominican. Both pitchers are at Pirate City now for physicals, but they are only here for a short time. They will report to the Dominican academy and they are scheduled for the DSL this year.

Sergio Cubilete is 6’4″, 185 pounds and 20 years old, while Jose Delgado is 6’3″, 195 pounds and 21 years old. We will get reports on them after they report to the Dominican and begin Spring Training over there.

Lefty Luis Diaz is also at Pirate City, over from the DSL, but he is here due to a shoulder injury. Diaz is a 17-year-old, who was signed back in July after he started hitting 92 mph. That was a jump of nearly 15 mph over where he was the previous July. He received a $50,000 bonus.

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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Did we ever find out why Never retired? He was actually having some success I thought?

Or maybe was told that he wouldn’t be moving up?


Thx…and yes, I meant Sever. Thanks for interpreting Foospeak.


He may be back, Sever say Sever.

joe s

Again the pirates try to find magic in a bottle by taking two more international signings that are on the older side. Maybe they are both hitting 90+ with excellent control and a great change and breaking ball, but if that were true they would have been gobbled up long ago. John, are these guys just roster fill or do they have some prospect status? Need to know more about them.


John……..It was probably written by you before, but I never knew Garcia was, in a sense, a “college draftee”. Kewl.

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