Merely spending money on players is no guarantee of success in sports. It makes the fans happy at the time, sure, and an increased payroll increases the margin for error. But the moves themselves still must be well-considered.
I will confess to not knowing much about Darwin Quintero before Minnesota signed him as the franchise's first designated player early this season.
I do know that United fans had been clamoring for such a transaction since the franchise's move to MLS in 2017. They supported the Loons quite well through a first season played on a shoestring player budget. Year 2 needed to bring an increase in quality as United geared up for a Year 3 move to its permanent home of Allianz Field.
And I now know this: Quintero, a 5-foot-5, 30-year-old whirlwind from Colombia who signed for a reported $200,000 transfer fee and $1.5 million annual salary, has been money extremely well spent.
Read Michael Rand's blog at startribune.com/randball. firstname.lastname@example.org.