Higgins was selected by the Angels in the 30th round of the 2018 draft out of Arizona State, and the southpaw opened some eyes during his short-season debut. Higgins spent most of the year in the AZL, compiling 24 strikeouts, 18 walks, and a 3.86 ERA in 21 innings before getting a brief promotion to Orem to finish the year.
Higgins is a big man, with a thick, mature build, and with a sturdy upper and lower half. His over-the-top delivery is high effort and has him working downhill and online towards the plate. Higgins works fast and controls the tempo of the game, and when he isn’t struggling to throw strikes, he attacks hitters early in the count. Higgins’ high effort delivery and lack of flexibility affect the repeatability of his mechanics and are the root cause of his control issues. His fastball sits 91-to-94 mph and has touched 96 mph. At its best, his fastball is heavy with late, sharp cut, but at times the pitch will flatten out up in the zone and get consistently barreled. His slider sits 83-to-85 mph with sharp 1-7 action and late bite. Throughout the year he has shown an ability to manipulate his breaking ball for a strike or chase pitch.
Overall, his flexibility issues, inconsistent mechanics, and age make him a high-risk player, but his natural stuff is loud enough to keep an eye on. If he can harness his repertoire and locate consistently, Higgins has the potential to move quickly. I love his natural stuff, physical build, and demeanor on the mound, and see the ceiling of a middle reliever who can face both lefties and righties. At worst, he’s a depth piece high in an organization that has some trade value as a hard-throwing lefty.