The right back position was a rather stable one during the 2015 MLS season for Orlando City Head Coach Adrian Heath, with Rafael Ramos and Tyler Turner splitting duties on the flank, although it was Ramos' job when healthy and not suspended.
The pair came at a great value, as the right back position cost ownership an average starting salary of $51,724.14, based on total compensation. (Note: this number was arrived at by average salary of Orlando City's right back based on the those two players and the number of games they played at the position.) Did Orlando City get good value based on MLS' market for the position?
Filling the shoes of the departed USMNT representative DeAndre Yedlin was never an easy task, but Mears has done quite well for the Seattle Sounders, and is the only player we'll talk about to score a goal during the season, showing a finishing touch that you don't often see from the position.
The Lion right backs were accurate passers throughout the year -- as Inchy coached players tend to be -- posting an 81.08% success rate, topping Mears' 80.8% ever so slightly. When it comes virtually every other measurable statistic, however, Mears holds a small advantage.
|Key Passes||Accurate Crosses||Tackles||Blocks||Interceptions||Clearances||Goals||Assists|
|OC Lion RB's||0.78||1||1.51||0.23||1.47||1.35||0||1|
While proving to be a slightly more effective right back, the fact that Mears cost over 300% what City ownership paid for the position shows the better value rather clearly.
Manning the right flank for the Vancouver Whitecaps at $190,000, Beitashour was one of the most influential at the position, league wide. While also coming up short when comparing passing percentages, at just 78.1%, his three assists show a playmaking instinct that City could not match at the position.
His IQ for the position wasn't just limited to the offensive side of the football. Beitashour was a thief the likes of which we haven't been seen since Bernie Madoff cleaned out Wall Street. His 3.4 interceptions per game -- and subsequent ability to find the open run -- made Vancouver's counter a threat throughout the campaign.
Filling the position for the new MLS Cup Champion Portland Timbers, Powell is one of the closest cost comparisons for Orlando City, registering in at $68,700 on the year. While still over 130% the cost of City's right backs, Powell was an insane bargain for Caleb Porter and the Timbers.
Seriously, a wild bargain. If you think getting 10 nuggets for $1.49 is big, check out the production Powell garnered defending the position in comparison to everyone we've discussed above.
|OC Right Backs||1.51||0.23||1.47||1.3|
Offensively, Powell was a different player. Completing just 67.3% of his passes and just 0.6 key passes per game, his value clearly comes in interrupting the opposing attack.
As Orlando City's cheapest position, it's not hard to see the impact -- at just $51,724.14 -- dwarfs what Seattle and Vancouver received at costs exceeding over $100K of the Lions' tab. Portland and Powell, however, prove to be the outlier. While slightly more expensive, Powell was a force for the Timbers en route to becoming one of the league's biggest bargains. While City may not have gotten that sort of value, they clearly got more bang for their buck than the league norm.