Notes: Scott upholds playoff trend; Tiger's floor; more
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
To get far too hung up on the word “playoffs” is to overlook what sits at the heart of the FedEx Cup mission statement. That is, to get the best players teeing it up in a series of four tournaments at a time of year that traditionally was quiet.
If you look at the quality of the FEC playoff winners, based on Official Golf World Ranking, it’s hard to argue that the PGA Tour hasn’t achieved its goal.
When Adam Scott, who was ranked fourth to start the week, won The Barclays, it continued an impressive trend. Ten times in 25 tournaments, the winner had been ranked in the top 5 – and 17 times he’s been a top-20 player.
The only two real longshots remain Heath Slocum, No. 197, at the 2009 Barclays, and Charley Hoffman, 132nd, at the 2010 Deutsche Bank Championship.
• • •
THE VIEW FROM 25: The Barclays was FedEx Cup playoff tournament No. 25 since this stuff debuted in 2007. To trumpet the occasion, some items of note:
• Hunter Mahan is the only player who can lay claim to having teed it up in every playoff event. Steve Stricker chose to skip The Barclays, after having played in each of the first 24, and Phil Mickelson in 2007 opted out of the BMW.
• Of the 17 players who have won FEC playoff events, Mahan is not one of them. In fact, though he’s got perfect attendance, he doesn’t have a sterling record. There have been five top 10s, but he has missed two cuts and finished outside the top 20 13 times.
• No surprise, but Tiger Woods tops the victory list, with three. Six players have two wins each: Mickelson, Stricker, Vijay Singh, Camilo Villegas, Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson.
• Woods has played in just 15 of the 25 tournaments, but he has not missed a cut. He has been first or second seven times, and besides the T-38 at the 2012 Barclays, Woods has never been worse than T-15.
• Jim Furyk has the most top 10s, with 11. Woods, Stricker and Mickelson have 10 each.
• Reggie Jackson, he isn’t: We’re talking Bubba Watson, who in 23 playoff events has but two top 10s. If you’ve got him on your radar for this week, take heed: In six starts at TPC Boston, Watson has done no better than T-16, including two missed cuts.
• Three players have finished top 10 in each of the four playoff tournaments in a season. Dustin Johnson did it a year ago, Padraig Harrington in 2009 and Rory Sabbatini in the first year, 2007.
• Rickie Fowler was T-9 at The Barclays, his first top 10 in 11 playoff events.
• Brandt Snedeker has missed three cuts in 22 starts, all at The Barclays.
• Jason Day has not missed a cut in his 16 playoff tournaments.
• Keegan Bradley will be playing in his 10th playoff tournament, and he’s still in search of his first top 10.
• Luke Donald missed the cut in his first playoff start, the 2007 Barclays, but he has made each of the 19 in which he has played since then.
• In six visits to TPC Boston, Stricker has a victory, two other top 10s and five finishes T-13 or better.
• Mickelson, Stricker and Mahan are the only players who’ve teed it up in every Tour Championship since the playoffs began. Mickelson, third in the FEC standings, is a lock to make it seven straight, but Mahan (21) and Stricker (28) have work to do if they hope to stay in the top 30 and keep that streak alive.
• • •
BED TIME IS ROUGH: Woods at the 2012 Barclays at Bethpage: “Must have slept funny on it. Soft beds at the hotel, and woke up this morning with (the back and neck sore). You know, as I warmed up, it got progressively worse, and then you saw what happened on the golf course. I’m probably going to sleep on the floor. I do that in Europe all the time, so this is nothing new. True. True, not a joke.”
And Woods at the 2013 Barclays at Liberty National: “My neck and back are a little bit stiff, it was stiff this morning after a soft bed and just one of those things, sleeping in hotels, and I didn't want to push it, so just took it easy and chipped and putted.”
All of which begs this: Maybe that’s why it’s the city that never sleeps. You can’t find a comfortable bed.
• • •
END GAME FOR SENDEN: It was easy to lose sight of it, given the heavyweights who chased victory till the final hole of The Barclays, but the tournament was the end of some impressive streaks by John Senden.
Sitting 109th in the FedEx Cup standings, John Senden is out of the playoffs after just one tournament for the first time. He had made it as far as the BMW in each season since 2007.
Not making it as far as this week's Deutsche Bank Championship ends another streak: He is the only player who had teed it up in each of the first 10 editions of the tournament. TPC Boston had been kind to him, too, with four finishes inside the top 15, and he had not missed a cut.
Golfweek.com readers: We value your input and welcome your comments, but please be respectful in this forum.