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Gems in MLS supplemental draft? History suggests few

Jan 22, 2013, 4:14 PM EST

Philadelphia Union v DC United Getty Images

First rule of MLS drafts: every club official loves their picks! Just ask them.

Generally speaking, they were shocked (shocked!) that these talented guys right at the tippy top of their lists were still available.  I mean, how lucky is that?

So the first rule for journalists, broadcasters and content providers who cover the MLS draft and its quieter, more reclusive cousin, the Supplemental Draft: pay attention to the first rule and don’t even bother to ask club officials about their picks. Because I guarantee, they love them!

Major League Soccer held its supplemental draft today. But rather than going through the traditional, silly exercise of seeking comment and then disguising guesswork as actual critical analysis, let’s just say this:

There were probably three to five men selected who will become significant pieces and valued assets around MLS. One of them could find his way at some point into Jurgen Klinsmann’s national team.

The rest? A few will find supporting roles on MLS rosters, a few will be funneled to lower tier organizations and more still will tumble out of professional soccer and move on with their lives. (It’s not so bad out here, guys.)

Evidence? Today’s supplemental draft lasted three rounds; It was effectively rounds 3, 4 and 5 of last week’s MLS draft. Let’s look at a couple of past drafts, at the selections taken after two rounds.

We will throw out the 2011 and 2012 drafts, since some of the selections aren’t yet 20 years old, and because it’s generally too early for a final assessment of those drafts. Here’s a quick snapshot of the previous two before those (past rounds 1 and 2, remember):

In 2009: Darrius Barnes and Danny Cruz (pictured) have been established starters at some point, and both figure to be around for a while. We could still hear something from Quincy Amarikwa, Mike Fucito, Marcus Tracy or Brandon Barklage. That’s about it.

In 2010: Sean Johnson, taken 51st overall, is the class of the lower-round draft class, a two-year starter at Chicago and a little apple in Klinsmann’s USMNT eye.

Chris Schuler (39th), Eric Alexander (44th) and Ben Zemanski (47th) have earned value as part-time starters. A couple of others are still developing, and … uh … yeah, that’s about it.

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