I don't envy @markjrdailey with post-game recap duties. I get the report card, though. Here's a preview: D D D D D D C C C D D D D D— Rituro (@ThatRituroGuy) September 20, 2014
Once again, the official Rituro Scale of Grading:
A - Fantastic performance. Few, if any faults. An example of the player's best work and a masterclass in how to play the position. Since this means an A+ would be near-perfection, don't expect me to hand out those any time soon.Not necessary today.
B - Above average. A good day at the office for the player, with no major mistakes to speak of. Was a help more than a hindrance to the team on and/or off the ball.Not necessary today.
- C - Average. Made some mistakes, had some good moments. Nothing to put the player in the doghouse, but nothing to write home about, either.
- D - Below average. A worrying performance that will leave coaches, teammates and/or supporters concerned about future efforts. Turnovers, poor clearances, missed big chances and soft goals will earn you this grade.
- F - Atrocious. Get off the field, hand in your kit and never darken the halls with your presence ever again.
- I - Incomplete. Player suffered an injury, was substituted at halftime with a view to later matches or some other occurrence that would leave us with insufficient evidence to assign a grade.
I'm going to try something a little different this time around. In addition to highlighting a selection of players to get the conversation started, I'll add grades for all eleven starters plus any subs that earned better than an "I". And now, the rankings for a match that can only be described as season-ending:
David Ousted: C
Nobody - not even a soccer-playing robot infused with the ghost of Lev Yashin - would've stopped Diego Valeri's thunderous volley to open the scoring. Once that goal went in, it was a slow, inevitable slog to a loss that unlike the Dallas game can't be put on Ousted's shoulders. I was going to give Ousted a C+ but letting a ball through your personal space into the back of the net is an instant deduction.
Jordan Harvey: D
Andy O'Brien: D
Kendall Waston: C
Steven Beitashour: D
Anybody else feeling a bit of buyer's remorse over Beitashour? What we, the supporters, were promised with the signing of the man meant to replace Young-Pyo Lee has hardly materialized this season. That promise-vs-reality disparity was fully on display in Portland, where Beitashour had no answers for the marauding wingers and fullbacks on his side of the pitch and no ideas for the attack other than lobbing hopeless crosses into the box well after it became clear the aerial game was a non-starter. I've said it before and I will continue to say it because, dammit, maybe someone will listen and take notes:
Matias Laba: D
Good grief, Matias. Two matches against Portland; two absolute stinkers. Laba looked slow, out of position, overmatched and entirely ineffective for the last hour of the game. The early yellow card certainly didn't help, either.
Russell Teibert: C
Pedro Morales: D
Mauro Rosales: C
Erik Hurtado: D
D'you think anyone would notice or care if the 'Caps stopped the team bus in Beaverton, kicked Hurtado off, threw out his bags, drove off and faxed the player's rights (along with a sarcastic letter of recommendation) to Portland's U-23 PDL squad? Or is that just me rage-fantasizing again?