- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On May 19, 2010
- 2 Comments
- 2010 Rookie Watch, Andy Najar, Blair Gavin, Collen Warner, Danny Mwanga, Ike Opara, Michael Stephens, Steven Beitashour, Tim Ream, Zach Loyd, Zach Schilawski
Its been a little over a month since last I dived into any real rookie discussion on here. Over the last month a few rookies have begun stepping out in front of the pack just like we normally see from season to season.
This year’s rookie class may not be as strong right now as last years but there are a lot of quality players in this mix. As the summer rolls on with busier schedules we’ll likely see more out of these guys too.
Just like in years past I won’t go into who I think is leading the pack for the Rookie of the Year award until later on in the season. But with nearly a third of the games done this season we’re starting to get a clearer picture of who will be leading that race. These next two months will tell us more so stay tuned. The list below is in no real order, so take the numbers beside the players with a grain of salt.
1. Tim Ream, New York – He’s still probably the best rookie so far this season though just like his club he’s been slipping lately. Still he looks more like a three or four-year veteran of the league and not a rookie.
2. Danny Mwanga, Philadelphia – His game-tying goal against FC Dallas this past week showed me a whole lot about this kid. First of all his confidence probably just shot up and second he’ll likely be getting more chances to score in the coming weeks.
3. Ike Opara, San Jose – The Earthquakes are a different club with him on the pitch. We knew he’d make them better defensively but I’ll honestly say I didn’t expect the Quakes to be doing this good this early so far.
4. Zach Schilawski, New England – He hasn’t produced much over the last month but neither has his club. He still has the ability to be a difference maker this year for Steve Nicol.
5. Andy Najar, D.C. United – The academy star has really impressed me lately. He’s the bright spot on a rather ugly team.
6. Blair Gavin, Chivas USA – These last few weeks have been telling for Chivas but their midfield has improved a lot due to Gavin.
7. Michael Stephens, LA – I think he’ll likely be in the discussion for Rookie of the Year by the end of the season. He isn’t a big difference maker right now for the Galaxy but watch him over the next month and a half, you’ll see how good he’s going to be here.
8. Zach Loyd, FC Dallas – He’s taken over a starting role in the Dallas defense and things are slowly turning around for FCD in the process.
9. Steven Beitashour, San Jose – The lowest draft pick on this list (No. 30), he’s probably been the most underrated rookie so far this year.
10. Collen Warner, RSL – We said he’d be a gem for Jason Kreis and he’s starting to show that.