Dillon Powers and Deshorn Brown are just two of the exciting youngsters getting it done around Dicks Sporting Goods Park.
When it comes to tracking Major League Soccer’s Rookie of the Year honor, there may be no need to scan the landscape. Rather, just book a little time around Dicks Sporting Goods Park outside Denver.
Two of the leading candidates are there. A third could even elbow his way into the argument. And too bad emerging left back Chris Klute had signed a pro deal last year; this is his first full Rapids campaign, but he’s not eligible for Rookie of the Year.
Here is our current view of how the league’s Rookie of the Year race is shaping up:
1. Colorado Rapids midfielder Dillon Powers:
Perhaps the league’s No. 11 draft pick in January got some early starts due to the outrageous array of injuries Oscar Pareja’s team suffered in March and April. But the versatile midfielder out of Dallas has certainly earned his keep, starting every match for the West’s third-place team, sometimes deployed in a holding role, sometimes in slightly more advanced positions.
To get four goals and five assists from a two-way midfielder represents a pretty good season. To get that kind of production from a rookie? That’s outstanding. Plus, we still have almost a third of the season remaining.
2. Colorado Rapids forward Deshorn Brown:
Edson Buddle was expected to be the big scorer around DSG Park this year, but the former U.S. international just cannot find his scoring feet. It would be impacting the Rapids with more ferocity were it not for Brown’s team-leading six goals and four assists. The Jamaican striker has blazing pace, and he knows what to do when he gets past those helpless defenders.
3. Seattle Sounders right back DeAndre Yedlin:
The kid still has a lot to learn on the defensive side, but what a weapon Yedlin has become along the right side at CenturyLink. An All-Star appearance upped his Q rating.
Also in the running: New England’s Andrew Farrell; Colorado’s Clint Irwin.
(MORE: Tracking Major League Soccer’s MVP award; it’s Mike Magee’s to lose)