[MLS SPOTLIGHT] It isn't easy for a rookie to break into MLS -- only six players have topped the 300-minute mark so far and just 11 of the 19 players taken in
the first round of the 2013 SuperDraft have made their pro debuts. But a few rookies have had an impact. Jamaican Deshorn Brown and former U.S. U-20 Dillon Powers have started for every game for the injury-riddled Colorado and along with homegrown product Shane O'Neill (who
made a 4-minute appearance last season) have been a big factor in keeping the Rapids competitive.
Brown has two goals -- including the winning penalty kick on Saturday in the 1-0 win at Chivas USA -- and Powers scored a golazo early in the season for the Rapids, who won their last two games after opening 0-3-2 and now sit in a five-way tie for fourth place.
The New England Revolution looks to have gotten it right with No. 1 pick Andrew Farrell, who has stepped in seamlessly on the Revs' defense that has allowed just two goals in five games. (Unfortunately, New England hasn't scored since its 1-0 win its opener.)
There was a lot of talk that Chivas USA made a mistake in taking Mexican-American Carlos Alvarez -- the son of a former Chivas de Guadalajara player -- with the No. 2 pick, but the UConn product had a dream debut, scoring the tying goal in the 1-1 tie with the LA Galaxy in the SuperClasico with his family in attendance, and he has played regularly since then.
Like Farrell, DeAndre Yedlin has played very well for Seattle without a lot to show for it, at least in MLS play. His goal started the comeback win over Tigres that propelled the Sounders past the Mexican club in the Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals.
For Adam Jahn, it was a short step from Stanford, where he attended college, to Buck Shaw Stadium on the campus of Santa Clara University, where he filled in for the injured Alan Gordon and Steven Lehnert and scored a late equalizing strike for the San Jose Earthquakes in their second game of the season.
Yedlin is one of several homegrown signings to have made an impact. Toronto FC drafted Canadians Kyle Bekker and Emery Welshman, but its big surprise has been Jonathan Osorio, signed in the preseason out its academy program.
2013 MLS Rookies:
MIN. PLAYER TEAM
596 Deshorn Brown (Colorado) 2 goals
570 Dillon Powers (Colorado) 1 goal
450 *DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle)
450 Andrew Farrell (New England)
315 Carlos Alvarez (Chivas USA) 1 goal
271 Adam Jahn (San Jose) 1 goal
221 Erik Hurtado (Vancouver)
180 *Scott Caldwell (New England)
166 Devon Sandoval (Real Salt Lake)
123 Kyle Bekker (Toronto FC)
102 *Jonathan Osorio (Toronto FC) 1 goal
90 Greg Cochrane (Los Angeles)
83 Kekuta Manneh (Vancouver)
53 Donnie Smith (New England)
33 John Stertzer (Real Salt Lake)
15 Ryan Finley (Columbus)
15 Taylor Morgan (Toronto FC)
11 Blake Smith (Montreal)
5 Emery Welshman (Toronto FC)
2 *Maxim Tissot (Montreal)
2 *Amando Moreno (New York)