|The Union's Josh Yaro, defending against Crystal Palace in a recent friendly, |
is part of a rookie class that has contributed more than any other
in franchise history. (AP)
Thursday night, Keegan Rosenberry
will represent the Philadelphia Union, along with Andre Blake
, in the MLS All-Star Game
. It’s a tremendous honor for a rookie to be playing with the league’s best and most expensive talent against a club with the quality and history of Arsenal.
But Rosenberry in particular symbolizes another aspect of the Union’s resurgence this season: His All-Star nod epitomizes a stellar rookie season being compiled by the Union’s SuperDraft picks.
Just 21 games into the season, Rosenberry has already set the Union record for minutes in a season by a drafted rookie. Likewise, the Union’s rookie contingent has bested the club mark for most combined minutes in a season by a draft class. In the process, they’re showing that the methodology of Earnie Stewart
that prizes building through youth
is on solid footing.
Here are the rookie numbers, which paint a rarely rosy picture for the Union:
Rosenberry has played every minute for the Union this season in MLS play, 1890 in all. He’s tied for second in MLS in minutes played
, trailing only New York City FC’s David Villa
(1906). Rosenberry is also one of three field players not to have missed a single minute for their teams this season, joining D.C. United outside backs Sean Franklin
and Taylor Kemp
(1800 minutes each).
Rosenberry’s total supplants the previous rookie mark for a Union draft pick, held by – appropriately enough – the man he replaced as the starting right back, Ray Gaddis.
The second-round pick in 2012 logged 1,475 minutes that season, narrowly edging out Danny Mwanga
in 2010 (1,461) and Michael Farfan
in 2011 (1,460).
Rosenberry has vaulted past that with room to spare. And he’s still got nearly 40 percent of the season to go.
“I would date it back to day I was drafted, just how thrilled I was and blessed to have the opportunity to play for the team I wanted to, close to home and in a familiar organization,” Rosenberry said this week. “Every time I’m put on the field, it continues to build confidence that the coaching staff and the team believes in you, and it breeds more confidence. That I’m continuing to play and earn starts, it means I’m doing my job right or the way it needs to be completed.”
But it’s not just Rosenberry. The four Union SuperDraft rookies on the roster – Rosenberry, Josh Yaro, Fabian Herbers
and Taylor Washington
– have combined for 3,277 minutes. That exceeds the total set by six draft picks who made the roster in 2010 and logged a collective 3,087 for the inaugural Union. The Union’s rookie minutes bottomed out last year
at a grand total of 12, all by the readily-released Ray Lee.
Read more »
|MLS minutes played by Union rookies per season.|
Labels: Amobi Okugo, Andre Blake, Danny Mwanga, Earnie Stewart, Fabian Herbers, Jack McInerney, Jim Curtin, Josh Yaro, Keegan Rosenberry, Michael Farfan, Philadelphia Union, Ray Gaddis, Raymond Lee, Taylor Washington