Seltzer: Major League Soccer’s top 10 player revelations of 2018

In my occasionally humble opinion, one of the best things about an MLS season is seeing which players will enjoy revelatory campaigns. I think you know what’s coming. We’re here with another tough-to-pick top 10 list, this time giving props to the guys who soared above (or, in a couple of cases, to) expectations in 2018. No. 10: Tyler Miller Tyler Miller | USA Today Sports Images We’ve gotten a handful of small, promising glimpses of Miller over the past few years, but LAFC ‘s Expansion Draft pick finally got to try on a starting role. It suited him well. The 25-year-old quietly finished the year with 16 wins, 10 shutouts and his first US national team camp call. The Real Salt Lake striker isn’t on this list because we learned he was a good enough player to take Rookie of the Year honors . After Baird helped Stanford win three straight NCAA titles, a lot of folks figured that one out. The thing is, he was more of a winger/attacking midfield type with the Cardinal. After a few decent runs on the flank (and the expensive Alfredo Ortuno flop), RSL moved Baird to the No. 9 role and found the forward that helps their team work best. Auston Trusty, Mark McKenzie | USA Today Sports Images It is one mean feat to play center back as a teenager in Major League Soccer. Just ask the Philadelphia Union ‘s top 2018 duo, because both of them know exactly what it’s like. Both had bumps in the learning curve, as could be expected, but performed quite well overall. Trusty played every minute of Philadelphia’s season, snuffing out advances with athletic cruelty. McKenzie was the heady defender with an easy way about moving the ball out of the back. After New York City FC signed the Libyan winger, I wrote that he “could be a surprise with his wheels.” The joke was on me because the surprise was Tajouri-Shradi’s deadly finishing, which showed up early and often this season. The 24-year-old had a couple of decent seasons in Austria, but his CV wasn’t enough to let on that he’d net a dozen goals, including one in the postseason. Fun fact: Out of those 12 tallies, six gave his side a lead and four pulled them level. Reggie Cannon | USA Today Sports Images Heading into the season, the young FC Dallas right back had worked a grand total of one MLS minute. Now, he’s got 34 starts under his belt, and is a capped US international reportedly being chased by a horde of Liga MX clubs. Cannon grabbed the open job in preseason camp and didn’t let go. The 20-year-old handled business at the back and offered solid support moving the ball forward for a team that led the West late in the season before stumbling. The D.C. United defensive midfielder has been called into Gregg Berhalter’s first January USMNT camp. It says here that summons should have been served back […]