Monday, July 14, 2008

Midseason Grades

After Thursday night's game against New York, the Wizards are now half way through their season. Through 15 games, the Wizards are 5-5-5 and tied for 6th place in the Eastern Conference. Overall, it hasn't been a great start to the season, after starting off with a 4 game home stand, the Wizards went on a two month road trip of 6 games. They went almost 4 and a half games without scoring a goal during the first half of the season. The good news is that they are undefeated in their last 6 competitive games, going 3-0-3 during that stretch. The good news is that the young inexperienced is playing better then expeced, as they have 6 shutouts this season. Also, Kevin Hartman is having an MVP caliber season as he's come up with multiple big saves in games to keep the Wizards in games, and win them points. The bad news has been the offense, who has scored a grand total of 14 goals in the 15 games so far this season. That's the lowest total in MLS minus expansion side San Jose. Either way, it's time to look at the player grades for the midpoint of the season.

Davy Arnaud - C - He missed the early part of the season recovering from his offseason knee surgery. He looks to be finally coming into form after struggling the first part of the season. But his first part of the season hasn't been that good.

Eloy Colombano - INC - played only 131 minutes in 7 games before he was waived by the team in mutual agreement.

Jimmy Conrad - A - Captain Kansas City has been a bright spot for the Wizards early in this season. He's got a team high 4 goals in league play and has anchored a young back line that has started to excede expectations.

Roger Espinoza - D- - Barely passing right now, Espinoza leads the league in red cards with two in only 412 minutes. Both could have been avoided if Espinoza showed a bit more composure.

Michael Harrington - B - Harrington's best attack has come from the US Open Cup games. During league play, Harrington hasn't been able to get field as much in league play, and unlike in the Open Cup has played in the back. Overall he's not having a great season, but he's definitely not having a sophomore slump.

Kevin Hartman - A+ - The Wizards MVP for the first half of the season. He dropped a lot of weight coming into this season and has played great with the less weight. He's helped the Wizards win points this year, which is why he was brought in last season. He won't get it, but he deserves MVP consideration.

Aaron Hohlbein - B - Came in for Tyson Wahl and has not reliquinshed that spot next to Jimmy Conrad. I thought Hohlbein should have been next to Conrad to start the season, and he's proven he's capable of helping anchor the back line next to him.

Jack Jewsbury - B- - Has raised his grade as the season has gone on, and he's moved back to the right back slot he anchored last year. Taking over the spot from two rookies, Jewsbury has helped to stablize the back line.

Andrew Kartunen - INC - League keeper training with the Wizards, hasn't made an appearance.

Michael Kraus - INC - Only seen him play in two games, against Seattle and against Atlas. Hasn't looked terrible, but hasn't looked like a guy who will really be in the team's future.

Eric Kronberg - B- - Has played in 3 and a half games this season and allowed 5 goals in that length of time. Still he's looked very good at times as well, especially against Seattle, where he was easily the Wizards man of the match in that game. He's showing that he can one day take the number one spot for the team.

Jonathan Leathers - C - Started the season for the Wizards and didn't look terrible, but he didn't look great. He has a future in this league, but at this point he needs a little more pro seasoning.

Claudio Lopez - c+ - I can't give any offensive player a high grade when you average less then a goal a game. Of the offensive players, Lopez has been the best, 3 goals and 3 assists in league play, and the intangibles of Lopez make him the best, but he is a DP and he needs to show more.

Carlos Marinelli - D - We're now starting to understand a bit more about his injury issues. He's almost missing too much time now to be worth it at this point. Even when he's on the field, he hasn't been fantastic.

Matt Marquess - INC - Only 3 games this year, but has showed some promise at the left back. May be able to take over the position for Harrington allowing him to move up to midfield.

Rauwshan McKenzie - INC - Only has 45 minutes of play this season in meaningful games, and didn't look good at all in that game.

Ryan McMahen - INC - Not enough time, but if he wants to stay with the team he needs to start contributing some how, as he's on the senior roster now.

Kurt Morsink - c- - Kurt's been a whipping boy of mine for a while now, but the last two games have been two of his best for the team. His pass to Davy for the second goal against New York was sublime. Hopefully he can continue to develop and become the player that Onalfo seems to see.

Chance Myers - C- - The number one pick in the draft has shown his youth so far. He hasn't looked bad, but like Leathers has been prone to rookie mistakes. He has talent and will be a good player in this league, I just don't see it coming this season though.

Boris Pardo - INC - Has only 45 minutes of a game I've seen (the friendly against Atlas).

Nelson Pizarro - INC - I've been impressed of what I've seen of him, but not enough to give him a full grade.

Ryan Pore - D- - He's not in college any more. This is his fourth season with the team and he has under a goal every 500 minutes. That's very poor (no pun intended) for a striker.

Scott Sealy - D - Well he's no longer a Wizard but he played the first half of the season with the team. In 13 games, he only had 2 goals, and missed other opportunities to get goals. I'm not happy to see him go because getting rid of goalscorers is not what a team that has trouble scoring should do.

Kevin Souter - INC - Hasn't gotten much playing time, especially lately with an MCL sprain.

Ivan Trujillo - D - Trujillo hasn't shown bad in the Open Cup (3 goals) and friendly games (2 goals). In league play, though, Trujillo has struggled only scoring the Wizards first goal of the season.

Sasha Victorine - C - Victorine missed an early part of the season with injury, but has come back and claimed a starting spot in the central of midfield. He's not doing terrible, but he's not helping KC control the midfield.

Tyson Wahl - C+ - Wahl hasn't done bad, but he's lost his starting spot to Hohlbein after 9 games this season. He hasn't seen the field for the first team in league since.

Lance Watson - INC - Has just returned from injury, and has just played in Seattle and against Atlas.

Kerry Zavagnin - C+ - Has been his consistant self on the field, but he continues to lose a step. He's just over a full game away from passing Nick Garcia for most MLS minutes for the Wizards. Surely he'll get enough time the rest of the year to pass him.


Reepicheep said...

You're hard on Lopez considering Sealy missed several good serves from him (at least 5 come to mind). Trujillo has also missed similar passes from El Piojo.

I think a B is definitely in order. If KC had a real target striker, things would be different for Claudio.

Anonymous said...

On Lopez, I think this statement just about sums it up: "but he is a DP and he needs to show more." He has been our best overall offensive player, no doubt. But he carries a little extra weight with that "DP" price tag which is probably why M gave him a C+ and not a B, IMO.

Give Kerry playing time Coach! He's still one of our better ball handlers with the ball at his feet.

Mike said...

kco, exactly, I gave him a C+ because more is expected of him with having that DP tag. Whether rightly or wrongly, more is expected out of him, and he's not showing it.

Reepicheep said...

For a DP he's modestly paid. I still say if Trujillo and Sealy finish 5 of their collective misses it's a different story for our outlook on Lopez. Oh well.

Anonymous said...

Modestly paid or not, he's still a DP and should be producing more. Sure Sealy and Trujillo has missed chances, but why hasn't Lopez created more himself?

Reepicheep said...

huh? The chances Sealy and Trujillo missed were made by Lopez. Anyways...

Anonymous said...

He hasn't created many scoring chances for himself. He doesn't get enough shots on goal or even shots in general.

Reepicheep said...

Certainly Claudio could do more. But to be fair, he has the most shots (36) and most shots on goal (14) on the Wizards. Keep in mind he isn't really a target striker.

Unknown said...

a goal a game is not a reasonable expectation. Drogba's best season was 33 goals in 66 games. Cristiano Ronaldo had 42 goals in 48 games last year, and was the world's best player. 1/2 a goal per game is more reasonable.

Anonymous said...

If you are talking about the part I think you are, he's referring to the team averaging under a goal a game which is unacceptable.