The Angels have had their eye on the 6’2, 220-pounder from Leander Rouse for several years — the franchise picked Southard in the 20th round of the 2019 MLB Draft.
Southard opted to make his way to the Forty Acres instead, where he made only three appearances in 2020 and 12 appearances before becoming a bigger part of a Texas bullpen that often struggled in 2022. Over 25 appearances this season, Southard posted a 4-1 record and a 2.76 ERA with 46 strikeouts in 29.1 innings as opponents hit .149 against the hard-throwing righty. Southard did struggle with his command at times, walking 19 batters, but his fastball reached the upper 90s at times and his slider was a devastating pitch when he located it well. If Southard can command both pitches, he’ll have a chance to advance quickly through the Angels system.