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2013 Player Profiles: Carlos Salcedo steps into big role, performs despite youth

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Douglas C. Pizac-USA TODAY Sport

When 2013 began most RSL fans had no idea who Carlos Salcedo was. By the end of the season, everyone knew that he was a big part of the future for the RSL defensive back line.

Salcedo signed a contract with RSL in January of 2013 after going through the RSL Academy. The original plan was to bring him along slowly; giving him time in the reserve league to learn and grow. Those plans were thrown out the window when a rash of injuries affected the RSL central defense. Salcedo was called into duty and made his first professional start against New England on May 8th.

Salcedo went on to have a successful rookie season playing for 1040 minutes. Although he would make mistakes along the way, the potential of the 19 year old was clear to see. He was good in the air and was very good with his possession out of the back.

In the time that Salcedo played, RSL gave up 15 goals or a goal every 71 minutes. By comparison the team as a whole averaged giving up a goal every 74 minutes on the season so the team was pretty close to their average when Salcedo was on the field. Interestingly, Salcedo had a plus/minus rating of +12 while he played. This is one of the best on the team when factoring in his minutes played. RSL had a very impressive record of 7-3-2 in matches which Salcedo started.

2014 should be an interesting season for Salcedo. While it would be a surprise to see him once again get as many minutes as he did last year, he still should see some playing time. His experience from last season will only help him improve going forward. He will probably be fighting with Kwame Watson-Siriboe as the primary backup for starters Nat Borchers and Chris Schuler.

The future looks to be very bright for Salcedo. A center back duo of Salcedo and Schuler could be a mainstay of the RSL central defense for years to come.

Editor's note: This is part of a series of player profiles recapping the 2013 season and previewing the 2014 season. Player ratings were compiled via a vote by RSL Soapbox writers. Statistics are via mlssoccer.com.