NEW YORK – League veteran Arturo Alvarez is on his way out of Real Salt Lake and the New York Red Bulls lost their final link to their days as the MetroStars thanks to Stage 1 of the MLS Re-Entry Draft on Monday.
Alvarez and defenders Carlos Mendes and Danleigh Borman were the only players taken in the draft on Monday. Alvarez was selected by Chivas USA, while Borman will join the New England Revolution and Mendes heads from New York to the Columbus Crew.
While Mendes joins the Crew roster immediately because the club has picked up his option, Alvarez and Borman have been offered bona fide contract offers by their prospective new clubs after their options were recently declined by their former ones.
All other teams in the draft passed on the respective selections, perhaps with eyes fixed on Stage 2 of the process next Monday, Dec. 12, when teams can select remaining available players and begin negotiating with them on a contract for 2012.
Alvarez, 26, joins Chivas USA after just one season with RSL. He joined the club via a trade with the Portland Timbers after he was taken in the Expansion Draft from San Jose. He started eight games for head coach Jason Kreis, but he was held to just one assist on the year.
He also played a role off the bench during the team’s run in the CONCACAF Champions League, and helped set up a goal for Javier Morales in the first leg of the tournament final against Mexican side and eventual champions Monterrey.
Chivas USA are the fourth team of a nine-year career for Alvarez, who enjoyed two different stints with San Jose and one with FC Dallas before he joined RSL last year.
Mendes, who turns 32 later this month, has spent his entire six-year career in New York. He debuted in 2005 when the club was still known as the MetroStars, and he’s held on longer than any other player remaining from those days for the franchise.
Prior to his selection on Monday, Mendes was seventh among active players in games played for only one club in their careers, and last season he passed Seth Stammler to boast the most appearances in club history among players who have only played for New York.
At times a very valuable part of the Red Bulls central defense each of the past two seasons, Mendes started 16 games for New York in 2011 and 20 the year before. He enjoyed a career high 31 starts during his second season in 2006 but more recently has battled for his spot against club newcomers Tim Ream and Stephen Keel as a go-to central defender with the club.
Borman, 25, is set to join his third team since in a calendar year. He started 18 games for Toronto FC last season after he was shipped to the Reds from New York as part of the Dwayne De Rosario deal in April. His combined 19 starts last between New York and TFC marked a career high.