2 up, 2 down: Captain America is back after Rocket Mortgage Classic

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

2 up, 2 down: Captain America is back after Rocket Mortgage Classic

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2 up, 2 down: Captain America is back after Rocket Mortgage Classic

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Golfweek takes a look at who’s up and who’s down each week on the three major golf tours. Here are the latest rankings for men and women.

The Golfweek/Sagarin ranking for each player is in parentheses.

PGA Tour

2 Up

Patrick Reed (33)

Captain America is back, baby! The 2018 Masters champ ripped off a T-5 finish in Detroit for his best result since a solo fourth at last year’s U.S. Open at Shinnecock. Reed has struggled for a while now and hadn’t managed any top-10s in 2019 prior to the Rocket Mortgage Classic. Now he’s trending in a better direction ahead of the year’s final major and has a chance to salvage things with a strong finish at Royal Portrush. Love him or hate him, golf is always more entertaining with Reed in the picture.

Nate Lashley (136)

Hard to find the words for the 36-year-old who just picked up his first PGA Tour win. He lost his parents and girlfriend when they were killed in a plane crash while he was in college and had tons of support from the fans in Detroit beginning Sunday’s final round with a six-shot lead. The long-time grinder never wavered in just his 33rd career Tour start. He got into the Rocket Mortgage field as an alternate and left with a two-year exemption and a spot in the British Open, along with the 2020 Masters. Doesn’t get much better than that.

2 Down

Dustin Johnson (1)

He’s not exactly slumping, but the World No. 2 hasn’t gotten anything out of his last three starts and missed the cut at the Rocket Mortgage Classic, 12 shots off the 36-hole lead. It was his first missed cut since the 2018 British Open and the first three-tournament stretch without a top-10 finish since September of 2017 (a ridiculously impressive stat, we should note). With two major runner-ups already, he’ll need to get the game turned around for Royal Portrush to avoid another what-if major season.

Cameron Champ (139)

Hit a wall early in 2019 and still hasn’t recovered after beginning the season with so much promise. He looked poised to contend for the first time in months after shooting 66-65 to start the Rocket Mortgage Classic. It got away from him in a hurry with a 3-over 75 Saturday and 1-over 73 in the final round to slide back to T-46. That was still his best finish since the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in February, but the drastic weekend drop-off will sting.

LPGA

2 Up

2 Down

Bronte Law (47)

After a break-through victory at Kingsmill in May, the Englishwoman has missed three cuts. Former UCLA star was grinding hard on the range last weekend at Hazeltine National. The only way Law can make the European Solheim Cup team is with a pick, so she can’t afford to go cold over the summer.

Cheyenne Woods (277)

Six LPGA starts and six missed cuts in 2019 for the one of the most recognizable players in the women’s game. Played twice in Europe, finishing 15th at the Fatima Bint Mubarak Open. Her lone start on the Symetra Tour resulted in a share of 15th. It hasn’t been an easy road for Woods since she turned pro, but it’s been particularly rough of late. Her last paycheck on the LPGA came more than one year ago.

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European Tour

2 Up

Christiaan Bezuidenhout (209)

Claimed his maiden European Tour win with a six-shot victory at the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters over the tough Valderrama course, the 1997 Ryder Cup venue. It’s the 25-year-old’s fourth top four of the season, which includes T-2 in the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters. Impressive for a guy in only his second full season in Europe. Putting might be the key to his season. He’s averaging 28.52 putts per round. That skill certainly helped on the slick Valderrama greens.

Thomas Bjorn (107)

It isn’t easy getting back into competitive golf after nearly two years as Ryder Cup captain, but victorious 2018 European skipper Bjorn showed a return to form with an eighth place finish in the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters. The 15-time European winner is hitting just 51.02 percent of fairways this season, but is averaging 28.29 putts per round. Not many expect the 48-year-old Dane to win this year. He probably doesn’t either. Just being competitive would probably be a good effort after the stresses of 2018. 

2 Down

Haydn Porteous (215)

While fellow South African Bezuidenhout has just won his first Euro Tour victory, Porteous is still looking for his third. He won in 2016 and 2017 but hasn’t really been close since, especially this year. The Johannesburg native has only recorded one top 20, T-12 In the Magical Kenya Open. The 24-year-old has a stroke average of 73.55 from 55 rounds played this season, which is maybe why he’s 100th on the Race to Dubai.

Gonzalo Fdez-Castano (469)

The Spaniard hasn’t had an easy ride since returning to the European Tour after two years trying to make it on the PGA Tour. This seven-time European Tour winner was 104th on last year’s Race to Dubai. He’s currently 145th after a pretty miserable season in which he’s made five of 16 cuts with a best place of T-18 in the Made in Denmark. The 38-year-old has only broke 70 11 times in 41 rounds this year. He’s still looking for his first win since the 2013 BMW Masters. It doesn’t look like coming any time soon.

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