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Most Valuable Canadian: Around June 27, D.C. United suddenly began scoring a lot more goals than they had earlier in the season. The reason? That was the day the team traded ineffective midfielder Dax McCarty to New York Red Bull for Dwayne DeRosario, a Canadian international who scored a total of 16 goals this year. DeRosario was named Major League Soccer’s 2011 most valuable player today—a feat that’s even more impressive because United missed the playoffs. DeRo, as he’s known, also won the league’s Golden Boot award for leading scorer. Maybe United should just start recruiting people from north of the border. +4
Library Expansion?: The Martin Luther King Jr. Library has taken its fair share of abuse from people who don’t like Ludwig Mies van der Rohe‘s design for the building over the years. But rather than recommending tearing it down, a panel of experts assigned to look at the library’s future came up with a new plan: Build more of it. The proposal would add two stories, renting them out to commercial tenants for $4.1 to $5.5 million per year, to help finance up to $250 million in renovations to the rest of the facility. No word on whether that would help keep it open seven days a week. +2 (Correction: Due to an editing error, this post originally misspelled Van der Rohe’s name.)
Bienvenidos, Wilson: After being freed from captivity by kidnappers in his native Venezuela, Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos decided to head back to D.C. for a few days. Nationals doctors checked him out and pronounced him fine. But Ramos isn’t fleeing Venezuela for long—he’s heading back to his winter league baseball team at home next week, presumably with a better home security system in place. +2
Prince Of Persia: The latest twist in the saga of Georgetown socialite Viola Drath‘s murder—it was a hit by Iran! So says Albrecht Muth, the late Drath’s husband, who is the man authorities say killed her. Muth, a German, says he’s a general in the Iraqi Army, which theoretically makes the Iran connection at least geographically plausible, if not likely. This trial is rapidly getting too weird to be turned into a movie. -1
Yesterday’s Needle rating: 50 Today’s score: +7 Friday bonus: +2 Today’s Needle rating: 59