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October 14, 2011 at 1:51 PM

Is Kasey Keller the MLS Goalkeeper of the Year?

keller goy.jpgPhoto credit: Jim Bates, The Seattle Times

(UPDATE 1:51 p.m. — Governor Christine Gregoire and Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn have proclaimed Oct. 15, 2011 as “Kasey Keller Day” and you can see the documents at SoundersFC.com)

It’s Kasey Keller send-off weekend as Saturday marks the Sounders FC captain’s last regular-season home game. One of the things I touched upon in today’s profile of the veteran goalkeeper is the subject of MLS Goalkeeper of the Year.

Certainly everyone in Seattle will argue his worthiness, but as I wrote in the story, he also has the stats to back it up.

Keller has played every minute of every league game and ranks first in MLS with 16 wins. His 75.6 save percentage is tops among regular starters and his 1.09 goals-against-average is tied for second. Not to mention, 102 saves are the most of any goalkeeper on a playoff-contending team.

I talked to assistant coach Brian Schmetzer about his worthiness and he noted that while gaffes and great saves show up in the highlight reels, Keller has always excelled at all the nuanced aspects of the position: organization, cutting down angles, decision making, etc.

The MLS Goalkeeper of the Year race is particularly interesting this season because no one has really taken charge. The Los Angeles Galaxy have combined to have the best numbers, but Donovan Ricketts and Josh Saunders split time. RSL’s Nick Rimando and FC Dallas’ Kevin Hartman are reliable veterans that will always be in the picture. Others like Philadelphia’s Faryd Mondragon, Chivas USA’s Dan Kennedy and Houston’s Tally Hall also deserve consideration.

Where does Keller stand? He would get my vote right now. Soccer America has him second.

What do you think?

* * *

Where does Kasey Keller stand in the MLS Goalkeeper of the Year race?

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