Saturday, January 16, 2016

The Rapids Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Week

A couple of pieces of news and then a wrap-up of one of the more eventful weeks in Rapids history.

First, the player to be named later in the Philly trade for the #2 pick is midfielder Zach Pfeffer.  He's a homegrown player that's gotten minimal playing time with the Union.  Some of their fans say its due to the Union not doing a good enough job of finding a spot for him, others say its because while he has some skills he's still raw and undeveloped.  Either way not a big name player we should expect to get a lot out of this season.  We better have gotten a truckload of allocation money in that deal.

Second, sources report to ESPN that we're targeting Tim Howard after being rebuffed in our pursuit of Bedoya by Nantes....

This would be a ridiculous move by Colorado.  I can't think of another player that would do less for us on the field with that #1 allocation spot than Howard.  Don't get em wrong, I'm a huge fan of Howard but we had a top 5 defense last season with an All-Star goalkeeper and we've already traded for a MLS-starting quality keeper as a backup this offseason.

To me this is one of two things, neither of which is good but one is much worse that the other.
  • This is our response to Nantes playing hardball on Bedoya.  We;re trying to show them that if they don't want to negotiate we have other options with the hope that it brings them back to the table.  If that's the case I can't understand why we're using Howard.  Nantes can do the same analysis I did above.  We should have "targeted" Cameron or Johannsson or somebody that appears to fill one of our holes if we want it to be believable as a negotiating ploy.
  • Bedoya was the play, in blew up, and now the Rapids are scrambling for any sort of Plan B to justify the deals they made on draft day.  Howard ticks all the off-the-field boxes as he'd get people paying attention (maybe like people pay attention to a train wreck) and probably sell tickets.  He would do very little on the field though.
The former is the better option but in either case I no longer believe Bravo's statement that they acquired the #1 spot knowing that Bedoya wasn't in the picture.  That statement is clearly spin based on this news.

So, to sum up. This week has seen us trade away Brandon Vincent (essentially) and fail to get Bedoya in exchange while extremely overreaching for our actual 1st round pick by most draft analysis. The Pulido rumors point to somebody who doesn’t actually want to be here and is planning on returning to Europe after a season. The FO is now scrambling and throwing out Tim Howard as red meat for the fan base to get excited about but he’s probably the single allocation level player we need the least on the field. Our only significant offseason signing so far was just revealed to be recovering from a stab wound to the gut administered (apparently) by Miss Washington within a few days on either side of the Rapids trading for him.

Now there are ways to make this better but needless to say this has been a pretty awful week for the Rapids 2016 hopes.  Training camp opens Friday and there's a ton of work for Bravo and the Front Office to do to put together a competitive team.  As of right now we have 21 players under contract (assuming we count Greenspan) and 2 draftees.  To meet the goal of "having the team together for the start of training camp" means we need to sign 7 players including at least 3-4 "difference makers" this week.

Current roster:

GK John Berner
GK Clint Irwin
GK Zac MacMath
D March Burch
D Joseph Greenspan (when on leave from the U.S. Navy)
D Marlon Hairston
D Axel Sjoberg
D Sean St. Ledger
M Michael Azira
M Sam Cronin
M Marco Pappa
M Zach Pfeffer
M Dillon Powers
M Dillon Serna
M Juan Ramirez
M Marcelo Sarvas
M Jared Watts
F Dominque Badji
F Caleb Calvert
F Kevin Doyle
F Luis Solignac

Unsigned draftees:

D Dennis Castillo
M Emmanuel Appiah

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