The LA Galaxy made another surprising trade this season when the club acquired Pablo Mastroeni and the rights to Baggio Husidic from the Colorado Rapids in exchange for an international roster spot and a second round 2014 MLS SuperDraft pick.
Assessing what the Galaxy gave up will take some time given we don't know what Colorado will do with the international spot and the draft pick. However, what the Galaxy got out of the deal is not so straightforward either. Mastroeni captained the Rapids to their 2010 MLS Cup title and even scored a game-winning goal on the run to the MLS Cup but has been limited to nine matches since the end of 2011 due to injury. The veteran 36-year-old midfielder also made 65 appearances for the U.S. Men's National Team and was a part of two Gold Cup winning squads. Husidic, a midfielder who played for the Chicago Fire from 2009-2011, is currently playing for Swedish second division side Hammarby after refusing to make a move to the Rapids in 2012 following the Re-Entry Draft. As of yet, the Galaxy have not contacted Hammarby about signing Husidic.
Looking at the MLS career Match Impact Ratings for the two players does not give much confidence that either player would be on the scoresheet much. Mastroeni has an MIR of 13.7 and Husidic has a 24. Mastroeni only averages two points per season and 0.11 points per 90 minutes while causing 1.56 fouls per 90 compared to 1.22 fouls drawn. What Mastroeni has the most potential to provide, if he's healthy enough to play, are tackles that are also fouls and veteran leadership. The Galaxy don't really need more fouls from midfielders as Marcelo Sarvas (#1) and Juninho (#14) are both in the Top 15 this season in fouls committed. Mastroeni could also possibly see time on the backline as injury and national team duty have taken regular starters out of the lineup.
Husidic scored all five of his MLS goals for the Chicago Fire during what appeared to be a breakout 2010 season. The young midfielder's play during that season could be described positively as opportunistic, grabbing four goals at home, usually cleaning up a loose ball in the penalty area. If the Galaxy want to pursue Husidic after his contract ends in November, getting him back to 2010 form would make the trade a steal. His MIR that season was a solid 31. Husidic was third on the Fire with the five goals, and at 0.30 goals per match, they came almost as frequently as those of team leaders Brian McBride and Marco Pappa. Husidic scored on a fantastic 22.7% of his shots in 2010 and added three assists which boosted his points per 90 minutes to 0.48.