Souza, 31, spent the bulk of Spring Training with the Astros but didn’t make the team after going just 2-for-21 with 13 strikeouts in 27 trips to the plate. The former Rays slugger is still working to establish himself after a disastrous 2019 knee injury derailed his career.
Then with the Diamondbacks, Souza was lined up to serve as the everyday right fielder in Arizona when he tore the ACL, LCL, PCL and posterolateral capsule in his left knee on a play at the plate late in Spring Training. The gruesome knee injury obviously required surgical repair and unsurprisingly wiped out his entire 2019 campaign. Souza rehabbed into the summer of 2020 and wound up resurfacing in the big leagues with the Cubs, but he hit just .148/.258/.333 in 31 plate appearances last year before being cut loose.
At his best, Souza was a solid right field defender with above-average power and plate discipline. He’s always been prone to strikeouts (31.5 percent), but his 2017 campaign produced a .239/.351/.459 batting line and a career-best 30 home runs for Tampa Bay. Three seasons have elapsed since that time, and Souza has been dogged by pectoral injuries in addition to that horrific knee injury since that peak season. Assuming he heads to Triple-A with the Dodgers once that season kicks off, he’ll finally be able to continue his rebound efforts in a normal game setting — something that wasn’t possible in 2020 with last year’s lack of a minor league season.