Arguably one of the stronger arms in the 2019 MLB Draft is now off the board, as the X selected Texas Longhorns pitcher signee Jared Southard with the No. 601 overall pick in the 20th round.
Southard’s selection comes after he saw his draft stock soar this spring, as the power pitcher reportedly increased his speed to 95 mph. When it was all said and done, Southard lettered each season at Rouse High School, earning various accolades along the way, including multiple first-team all-district selections.
“When I think of Jared, power right-hander comes to mind,” Pierce said of Southard when his signed with Texas. “He looks the part and his arm is explosive. He continues to work hard to be the best he can be. Jared’s ceiling is tremendously high and he has a chance to reach it because he is a grinder. Jared joins Brett Baty as one of two local players to become future Longhorns.”
Southard’s PerfectGame profile detailed what he brings to the table:
“Big and strong athletic build, pretty mature physically. Gets coiled and tucked in his delivery, comes out of it with energy, works extremely fast and is a distraction to hitters. Advanced feel for pitch and will hit all velo points between 90 and mid-70’s with intent. Four-seam fastball up to 90 mph and is thrown to spots, two-seam fastball gets big hard diving action, two-seamer will meld into a change up with similar life. Curveball has plus depth and outstanding power, will shorten up curveball with intent for shorter slider effect. Knows how to pitch and has the tools. Potential two-way prospect, right handed hitter with an easy swing and big bat speed, gets lots of carry with loud sound off the barrel, quick and simple swing. Big outfield arm, has also caught in the past.”
However, though his upside as an eventual MLB prospect remains, the 6’2, 205-pound Southard will bypass the pros and instead, suit up on the Forty Acres next season.