During this week of the PGA Tour season I get a little bummed out. Glory’s Last Shot means the season is winding down. Before I know it there will be snow on the ground here in Salt Lake and every other blog post will be me whining about it. There’s still some good golf to be be played though, both by the tours and locally.
My PGA Championship Pick: Jason Day
I think Jason Day‘s “day” will come, this week. Day has been playing some spectacular golf and knocking on the door of major championships for a year now. He seems to be close to winning every major these days, 2nd place finishes in this year’s Masters and U.S. Open. Just looked at Day’s money list stats for the last 4 years a minute ago and it shows a total rising star. Back in 2008 he made $700K, 2009 $1.2M, 2010 $2.9M and this year already at $3.1M and counting.
The one thing which could derail Day would be his confidence level. He seems to be a bit fragile and hard on himself. Perhaps a little too emotional sometimes on the course. Can he keep it in check?
After watching Adam Scott‘s big win last week, there doesn’t seem to be a better ball striker playing right now. Name me one? Another Aussie with a good chance of winning.
Seems like Ireland owns major championships lately between Darren Clarke, Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlory. I’d mention Padraig Harrington too, but his game seems to be a jigsaw puzzle right now, for him. Which Irishman has the best chance this week? To me that is obviously the future PGA Tour member Rory McIlory.
As I’ve been saying for a week or two now, Tiger Woods‘s comeback will be a work in progress and cannot be judged by a few rounds, or a tournament or two. How well will Tiger fare this week? I don’t think Tiger will win, and I doubt he’ll be a huge factor. But by saying that, I wonder if I’m putting part of my foot in my mouth already. I just haven’t seen anything yet to lead me to believe he will perform really well.
Phil Mickelson‘s talent level is so massive that he can win any tournament, any time, on that talent alone. But Phil’s mental strength right now is the question. He seems to make some bad mental errors, like missing tiny short putts. If he stays focused, he’ll be a factor.
Other American players on my “could win the PGA Championship” radar are Nick Watney, Gary Woodland, Matt Kuchar, Bubba Watson. Of that group I like Woodland’s intensity and Watney’s consistency.
Luke Donald is ranked #1 in the world, yet hasn’t won a major. Luke is perhaps currently 2nd best to Adam Scott in the ball striking department. He needs to win a major in my opinion, soon, to be validated as a truly great player despite his current ranking.
Lee Westwood has some putting issues. Not sure he’ll have them worked out just yet. I’d love to see him win it, but I wouldn’t bet on it.
A couple of “fun” dark horse players I’d love to see win, but may not be quite ready yet, would be Matteo Manassero and Ryo Ishikawa. They happen to be paired up too on Thursday at 7:55am.