You know, when it comes to player ratings, I think of myself as a professor and the players of Bruce Arena's Los Angeles Galaxy as my students. Every match is a class project.
A win is akin to a well-done project, solid and well-thought out. On the other hand, a defeat is similar to a plagiarized or poorly-constructed project: not well-thought out, unoriginal and downright uncompelling.
I want you to keep this in mind when I post these player ratings on the Galaxy players for the rest of the year because in professional sports, or any profession, nobody is inclined to hold your hand, and I would not bother to hold the hands of these players if I could.
With this out of the way, let's take a look at the player ratings for the LA Galaxy in their 2-1 defeat to Toronto FC.
Josh Saunders 6
Saunders may as well have been the only player to have done something all night. He made saves, but in the end, he could not do enough of them. Saunders is in a slump, and he knows it. Question is, will he snap out of it on Sunday against D.C. United?
Sean Franklin 2
Franklin was off on his crosses and could have done a little bit better with the deliveries. Although he is trying to prove that the Galaxy don't have to rely on Beckham for the assists, Franklin is not backing that up and needs to so that opponents will have to worry about other potential set-piece specialists that don't have the No. 23 on their backs.
If you don't have the legs and you can't make good decisions, you're not going to get a good rating. Simple as that.
A.J. DeLaGarza 5
Perhaps the only workhorse on this backline that bothered to make an effort to salvage some pride for LA. Made his clearances and prepared a good deal of LA's offensive sequences. But DeLaGarza can't do it alone (hint: Omar Gonzalez).
Tommy Meyer 5
Very hard for me to give Tommy Meyer a 5 because he did not impress in his CCL debut. But Bruce Arena is touting Meyer as Gonzo 2.0 and the bar's set reasonably low, so the kid can only up his game from here on out.
Todd Dunivant 4.5
Here is just another player who didn't have the fitness level to catch up to Toronto. Great passing and movement early, but when the legs give out, it's a no-win situation.
Rarely did I mention Landon Donovan's name in my Live Blog on Wednesday. That means one thing: he was nonexistent. To his defense, he did try to find Keane out in the open and also had a look on goal, but Donovan did not have a remarkable game. He's not the only one.
It seems that David Beckham's set pieces are a slot machine. I'm going to keep spinning this allegory/metaphor for a while. Tonight, the payoff was minimal, if any. A below-average night for Becks.
Worst player on the pitch. Sao Paulo might as well keep him seated on their reserve side if he plays like this. Arguably his worst game ever. Beaten off the touch, lackluster passing, inept defending, one too many giveaways.
The Webster's dictionary defines impostor as "one who engages in deception under an assumed name or identity." Tonight, the 7,500 who bothered to show up tonight saw an impostor going under the assumed stage name of Juninho. The real Juninho? Still stuck in Brazil.
Mike Magee 2
Responsible for the first goal given up in the match, Magee may have faced his kryptonite in the form of the Ides of March. He has yet to find his finishing touch, and with plenty of football to be played this year, one can wonder when Magee Magic will be rekindled once more.
Robbie Keane 6
The only reason Robbie Keane has this high of a rating is that he had a number attempts on goal. Keane could have saved this team. But the goalkeeping of Milos Kocic proved to be all the difference.
Edson Buddle 4.5
A great forward is able to adjust to being double-marked and creating a chance or two. Edson Buddle could not create a lot of chances and fell into the offsides trap one too many times. Also, poor match fitness. We now understand why you sent him packing, Ingolstadt. Thank you.
Dan Keat 5
Of the three subs by Bruce Arena, Keat impressed the most. The more time this New Zealander gets, the better his confidence coming into matches later this year will be. This is a kid with a huge upside, and Dan Keat's role with LA will only get bigger.
Paolo Cardozo NR
Chad Barrett NR
Cardozo and Barrett came into the match late, so there is no rating for these two.