Wednesday, November 28, 2012

7 Options Declined

The Columbus Crew today announced they will be declining options on the following players contracts: William Hesmer, Rich Balchan, Julius James, Sebastian Miranda, Chris Birchall, Tony Tchani; and forward Tommy Heinemann.

Columbus is free to negotiate new contracts with these players but it is not likely that the club will pick any back up. Roster bullet points:

• All totaled the Crew dropped $ 854,825 in Guaranteed Salary ($ 710,950 Base) today.

• $ 1,899,900 worth of contracts remain on the 2013 payroll, $ 1,554,200 (Base Salary) left on the roster, according to MLS Salary Cap rules

• Only 9 players left from just 2 years ago. Of them, 2 were regular starters. Columbus very much in rebuilding mode despite reports out of team HQ stating otherwise.

Here is a list of 17 players that will be returning in 2013: Andy Gruenebaum, Matt Lampson, Eric Gehrig, Chad Marshall, Josh Williams, Bernardo Anor, Dilly Duka, Ethan Finlay, Eddie Gaven, Kevan George, Milovan Mirosevic, Jairo Arrieta, Federico Higuaín, Aaron Horton, Justin Meram, Aaron Schoenfeld, and Ben Speas.

According to reports, the Crew will be offering new contracts to Carlos Mendes, Emilio Renteria and Danny O'Rourke.


Sadly, a lot of what was cut strikes me as simply cutting injured players. I do not believe the Columbus Crew have the resources to care and feed players with injury (of any kind). Hesmer, Balchan, and Heinemann all had season injuries early on. James suffered a collapsed lung that sidelined him most of the year then battled a reoccurring shoulder injury. All were cut and all are probably casualty of a poorly financed and run fitness and training staff.

Sebastian Miranda and Chris Birchall are pure examples of unnecessary cuts in my book. They have MLS experience and earn a modest starting salary. Replacements will likely be, at best, similar quality. It's 'change for change sake' at it's best.

Tony Tchani seemed to come on a bit this year but ultimately it's probably his Generation Adidas contract that did him in.


Having only been a casual fan over the years, Tommy probably responsible for me getting hooked on following the Crew as closely as I have since late 2010. I'm not even going to pretend to use data to justify keeping him (even though his win % as a starter remains one of the best in last 2 years). I favor him too much. He's a good dude and I wish him the best where ever he goes.

Tommy's time with the Crew inspired enough in me to make a couple videos... 1st is a video during a long road trip out west back in 2011.

Another was in defeat... but myths, legends and heroes are made in such times:

And here's a 3rd one I did.

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