Thursday, April 12, 2007

MLS Rookies: Out Of The Gate

Last weekend, a total of six rookies started for MLS teams in their opening matches. It seems like the only ones that started based 100% on merit and not due to injury were Ty Harden of the Galaxy and Andrew Boyens of Toronto FC. Another four saw time off the bench. So that's ten rookies total who saw action in their team's first game, not counting any for Kansas City this week (so the total could still change). How does that compare to previous years?

I haven't done the research for all eleven previous seasons (BTW, I'm sure 1996 will be fun), but I have done it for the past five years. What follows is a list of the "first game" rookie starters for the post-contraction era.

None of those guys want to be like Casey Schmidt (remember that preseason?) who never started another MLS game. There's plenty of forgettable players below. However, it's important to point out that for the last five years, every rookie of the year has played in the first game. Overall, 9 of 11 rookie of the year winners and 21 of 33 finalists have played the first game.

2002 was a hard year for rookies following contraction, while 2005 was an expansion year and therefore there's more on that year's list. I'm using MLS' definition of a "rookie" so that's why Taylor Twellman isn't here. Also, I'll be sure to edit this post after the Wizards game this week (done).

2007 Team Player Role Min

CHV John Cunliffe sub 5

CLB Brad Evans sub 2

KC Michael Harrington start 90

KC Kurt Morsink sub 2

KC Aaron Hohlbein start 90

LA Robbie Findlay sub 30

LA Ty Harden start 90

NE Adam Cristman start 71

NE Gary Flood start 80

NE Wells Thompson start 90

NY Dane Richards start 84

NY Sinisa Ubiparipovic sub 6

TOR Andrew Boyens start 90

2006 Team Player Role Min

CHI Calen Carr sub 11

CHI Floyd Franks sub 1

CHV Lawson Vaughn start 90

CHV Jonathan Bornstein start 90

CHV Sacha Kljestan start 90

CHV Drew Helm sub 2

CLB Brandon Moss start 90

CLB Jason Garey sub 18

CLB Kei Kamara start 90

KC Matt Groenwald start 90

LA Nathan Sturgis start 71

NE Kyle Brown sub 7

NY Marvell Wynne start 90

RSL Mehdi Ballouchy start 73

RSL Ryan Johnson sub 17

2005 Team Player Role Min

CHI Chris Rolfe sub 24

CHI Chad Barrett sub 10

CHV Brad Guzan start 90

CHV Aaron Lopez start 74

CLB Ryan Kelly sub 3

CLB Domenic Mediate sub 13

CLB Knox Cameron sub 2

COL Hunter Freeman start 90

COL Guy Melamed start 90

DC Bobby Boswell start 90

KC Scott Sealy sub 9

LA Mubariki Chisoni sub 45

NE Michael Parkhurst start 90

NE James Riley sub 34

RSL Luke Kreamalmeyer sub 18

SJ Danny O'Rourke start 90

2004 Team Player Role Min

COL Gary Sullivan start 90

DC Freddy Adu sub 29

DC Josh Gros sub 5

NE Clint Dempsey sub 6

NY Jeff Parke start 90

2003 Team Player Role Min

CHI Nate Jaqua sub 2

CHI Damani Ralph sub 15

COL Matt Crawford start 45

COL Casey Schmidt start 90

NE Pat Noonan sub 8

NY Jacob LeBlanc start 90

NY Ricardo Clark start 90

NY Mike Magee start 90

SJ Todd Dunivant start 90

2002 Team Player Role Min

CHI Kelly Gray sub 15

CLB Kyle Martino sub 3

COL Jeff Stewart start 100

LA Gavin Glinton sub 2

NY Sam Forko start 90

Team Breakdown (2002-7)

Start Sub
CHV 5 2
CLB 2 7
DC 1 2
KC 3
LA 2 3
NE 4 4
NY 7 1
RSL 1 2
SJ 2

Year Breakdown

Start Sub
2007 8
2006 9 6
2005 7 9
2004 2 4
2003 6 3
2002 2 3

Comments on "MLS Rookies: Out Of The Gate"


Anonymous MetroFanatic said ... (8:35 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

You're missing Ricardo Clark for the Metros in 2003.


Blogger scaryice said ... (4:18 PM, April 12, 2007) : 

Thanks. I noticed that when I was double checking this, but I forgot to update the 2003 list. The stats include him already.



Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:48 PM, April 14, 2007) : 

You might as well add Dallas with the 0 place holder, seeing as you have all the teams other than Dallas listed.



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