Thursday, January 14, 2016

Rapids Go All In On Outside Signings

A wild and crazy day at the Superdraft ended with the Rapids positioned to make some big signings from outside the league and not much else.  First to recap the day.

1. Rapids send Targeted Allocation Money to LA for the #12 pick
2. Rapids send the #2 pick to Philly for General Allocation Money and a player yet to be named
3. Rapids send the #12 pick, the #2 pick in the second round, and the #2 spot in the allocation order to Chicago for the #15 pick, the #13 pick in the 2nd round, and the #1 spot in the allocation order
4. With the #15 pick the Rapids select defensive mid Emmanuel Appiah out of Cincinnati
5. Rapids send the #13 pick in the 2nd round to Dallas for the #17 pick in the second round and the #17 pick in the third round
6. With the #17 pick in the 2nd round the Rapids select defender Dennis Castillo out of VCU

So the final result:
#1 allocation ranking
General allocation money
Player to be named later from Philly
Emmanuel Appiah
Dennis Castillo
#2 and #17 picks in the 3rd round and the #2 pick in the 4th round on Wednesday

That's a far cry from my prediction of Brandon Vincent and somebody else.

Really this means the Rapids have put all their chips on outside signings.  There are basically 3 ways to acquire players.

A. Draftees/college kids - The Rapids just past on their best chances to improve in this group by trading down all day
B. Internal league trades - The Rapids have to have something to offer.  At best they have Irwin and maybe Powers but that's a zero sum game
C. Outside the league signings - This is where the Rapids have put their money

With the #1 allocation spot and allocation money while passing up a top draft pick the Rapids are clearly going with the outside signing strategy.  For a while today the rumors were that they would be signing Alejandro Bedoya but that was shot down officially tonight by Goal.com.

Allocation ranking is only used for returning U.S. National Team players (both full team and youth) and players who were sold by MLS for at least $500K and are returning.  Here's the list as of mid-summer.  We would not use our allocation ranking on Pulido who would not require that (more on that later).

I wanted to highlight a couple of quotes from the Goal.com story:
"We tried to make it happen but Nantes is not selling" Bravo said on Thursday of the club's interest in Bedoya. "We still feel securing the top spot in the Player Allocation Order is a very significant step for our organization."
According to Bravo, the Rapids still plan to use the top allocation spot to sign someone this winter, though he would not say who the Rapids are targeting
and
"Our goal is to have our team together for the start of training camp, to have all the pieces together for Pablo to start the season," Bravo told Goal USA. "Our ownership has committed to really improving our team and we have a plan in motion we feel very good about."
So clearly the Rapids new Bedoya wasn't the plan when making the moves today and they have someone else in mind.  They also expect to move quickly on this plan since camp opens (probably) in a week.

On to Pulido.  ESPN had an article today (in Spanish) saying that, if Google Translate didn't fail me, states that Olympiacos and the Rapids are very close to a deal and it was originally Pulido who didn't want to come.  It also states that this would be a one year loan with the plan that Pulido will return to Europe after one season in MLS.  Now standard operating procedure for a loan into MLS is to include an option for MLS to buy the player but its not a requirement.  I;m really hesitant to go after a player that only plans to be here a year.  That's not the long-term plan we need to rebuild this team.

If they pull this off and get a significant player alongside Pulido with a long-term plan then then will be a day of great moves.  Make no mistake though this is a must deliver move for Hinchey, Bravo, and Mastroeni.  Even with their apparent job security if they can't being in Pulido and an allocation-level player before the season starts then that's the end of the road.  Today they bet everything on this plan and they better not bust.

1 comment:

Mark Weatherley said...

At this moment it looks like an all or nothing approach for the Rapids. If they don't get Pulido or someone else of his caliber + others they (the front office) are really going to look as bad as they ever have.

As a fan and season ticket holder I do want the Rapids to go after Pulido, even if the deal is only for one season as I don't think they will have a shot at anyone else of his caliber. But they also need to find more talent and create depth that is currently missing, especially on the back line. Pulido alone won't solve all the issues.