D.C. United was slotted to pick No. 1 in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft but they traded that pick to the Philadelphia Union for the No. 2 pick and allocation.
With the No. 2 pick the black and red selected University of California defender Steven Birnbaum.
An Irvine, Calif., native, the defensive standout made an impact the instant he stepped on campus seeing action in 17 games while making eight starts during his freshman season. Eventually the 6’2” 180-pounder went on to be named a co-captain and also earned a spot on the All-Pac-12 First Team.
The centerback also won a silver medal with the U.S. team in the 2012 Pan Am Maccabi Games in Brazil.
“Steve has all the tools to have a long career as a professional,” said D.C. United General Manager Dave Kasper. “He reads the game very well, has a dominant aerial game, makes intelligent decisions with the ball and is a ferocious competitor. We congratulate Steve and welcome him to the Black-and-Red.”
“I’m looking forward to watching Steve grow to be a starter in this league,” said D.C. United Head Coach Ben Olsen. “Physically and mentally he is ready for the pro game and possesses love for defending that centerbacks need.”