Ranking each of the last 10 Angels first round draft picks from worst to best

With the MLB Draft beginning tonight, let's take a trip down memory lane at some recent Angels first-round draft picks
June 11, 2023; Anaheim, California, USA; Los Angeles Angels shortstop Zach Neto (9) is greeted by
June 11, 2023; Anaheim, California, USA; Los Angeles Angels shortstop Zach Neto (9) is greeted by / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
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4) Taylor Ward: 25th overall, 2015 MLB Draft

Like Matt Thaiss, the Angels drafted Taylor Ward toward the end of the first round in 2015 as a catcher. Ward caught at Cal State and caught for his first couple of seasons with the Angels before being moved to third base in 2018. He wound up playing both corners in the infield and outfield before being called up for the first time in 2018.

Ward struggled at the big league level, posting a .633 OPS in his first three seasons and 94 games before putting up pretty solid numbers in 2021. He had a 107 OPS+ and hit eight home runs in 65 games. Those numbers helped earn him a starting role in 2022, a spot he ran away with.

Ward broke out in a huge way, slashing .281/.360/.473 with 23 home runs and 65 RBI in 135 games last season. He played at an all-star level for a majority of the season despite struggling mightily after injuring himself crashing against a wall.

Ward has followed up his breakout season with a very pedestrian one at best. He's slashing .243/.318/.377 with nine home runs and 31 RBI. He's had some good moments and hasn't been awful overall, but a 91 OPS+ is certainly disappointing for the Angels left fielder.

Had Ward found a way to replicate his all-star quality season, there's a good chance he's at the top of this list. Unfortunately, it wasn't in the cards. Hopefully he has a strong second half.