Denny Medley-US PRESSWIRE
In a move that has shocked most, D.C. United has used the 17th spot in the allocation order to sign former MLS MVP Carlos Ruiz.
Twitter is not often the best source of information, but today it has given us the scoop of the year. D.C. United confirmed today that they have acquired Carlos Ruiz, likely on a one year deal for approximately $140,000. The move does not cost United an international spot either, as Ruiz has a green card. United had to use the allocation process because Ruiz was sold outside of the league for a transfer fee; however, they were able to acquire him without trading for a higher allocation spot. This acquisition takes United from the 17th spot in the allocation order to the 19th spot and Ruiz is the best value that United will get without trading.
Despite my reaction yesterday to the possibility of United signing Ruiz, I have gotten behind the deal (to a point). The main reason is that I trust Ben Olsen: If he thinks that he can get something out of Carlos Ruiz, then who I am to say anything different. I also like the deal because, since my expectations are so low, there is no chance that I can be disappointed by it. Charlie Davies was a disappointment to many of us because we did not think that he had to resort to the diving for which he was fined; with Ruiz, we have no such illusions. Think of it this way: United is getting a former MLS MVP at 33 for the same price that they would have had to pay Maicon Santos or Josh Wolff. In truth, I'm fine with it.
The major question this does raise is the pecking order of D.C. United's forwards. United now have Dwayne De Rosario, Lionard Pajoy, Rafael Gladiador, Michael Seaton, Casey Townsend, Raphael Augusto, Carlos Ruiz, and perhaps others competing for what we have all assumed to be two starting forward spots. But if you look a little closer, Ruiz seems more of a sub for the withdrawn forward rather than the target man, for the De Rosario rather than the Pajoy. Only DeRo and Augusto currently fit the mold of withdraw strikers, with Townsend perhaps able to fill in; Ruiz fills the role that Josh Wolff played in his first months here, before injury and age took its toll.
Obviously this move is not going to be met with approval from the vast majority of D.C. United's fanbase. Feel free to vent, argue, and defend the move in the comments.