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PGA Tour: The Masters Winner, via Process of Elimination: Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 08 Apr 2015, 3:08 am

First topic message reminder :

1).Last year I slurped a couple of bottles of Malbec and attempted to make a case for a European Champion. Henrik Stenson was the chosen candidate and he played well but not nearly well enough, Jonas Blixt finishing ahead of him as the leading Swede. So we changed the formula this year, not the Malbec of course, but let's revert to Andy North's time-honoured process of elimination.
NB: Any bias or prejudice is entirely intentional.

2).Starting with Amateurs. One or two have come close, Patton, Venturi, but none won a Green Jacket and that won't change this year. Seven eliminated.

3).No rookie has one since Fuzzy Zoeller over 35 years ago. I fancy Tringale to play well, but I'll go with history and take out the 13 first-timers.

4).Jack Nicklaus won the 1986 Masters at the age of 46, the oldest Champion. I don't see any of the forty-somethings in the field improving their game, so let's dispense with the likes of Westwood, Furyk and Els and 20 others. 23 can exit, best chances Phil, who's only had one top ten finish since Muirfield, and Cabrera, always a decent each way punt.

5).Augusta National could be the toughest walking course these guys play, not good if you're carrying a knock, physically or mentally, or in some cases Tiger, both. Bye bye to seven crocks, including McDowell, Stenson and Reed.

6).Poor putters and scramblers need not apply. 24 still standing are #110 or below in the PGA Tour's primary putting or scrambling stat. On your way then Dustin, Rickie, Keegan, Webb, Kaymer, Rose, Charl and Adam. Big risk sending Matsuyama and Oosthuizen down the road, but their putting has not been good enough. Russell Henley may be a putting genius but he needs to scramble too.

7).As baseball fans know, "Chicks dig the long ball", and so do Augusta's Green Jackets; bad news for slowpokes Crane and Na and eight others, none of them in the top 100. Sorry Sneds, still good for a place.

8).Only fourteen left so time to discard those currently out of form. Regardless of what they might have done elsewhere in the world, none of this lot have a PGA Tour top ten finish this year: Dubuisson, Grace, Ilonen, Mahan, Streelman, Villegas. Adios to the 6 of you.

9).And of the rest, only Jason Day, Spieth and Jimmy Walker have wins, so San-Moon Bae, Sergio, Rory, Ryan Palmer and Bubba can leave quietly down Magnolia Lane.

10).Day, Spieth and Walker have all played well at Augusta. Day and Spieth have play-off wins this year, Walker has two wins by a total of 13 strokes. Give me the proven winner and measure up Jimmy Walker for a Green Jacket. Cheers.

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Post by pedro Wed 15 Apr 2015, 1:11 pm

Rory said he thought he needed to score a 61 or 62 to have a chance. When he a missed a few opportunities on the first 4-5 holes, I think he kind of gave up a bit. Ironically he managed 6 birdies after that, and as Montys Merkin says, probably because he relaxed a bit.

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 15 Apr 2015, 1:34 pm

Rory also said he had to knock a bit of "rust" off early in the week; his irons on Thursday were not sharp at all.

Imagine he'll rethink his pre-Masters schedule for next year, play Houston instead of Bay Hill at the very least. The MatchPlay is in there somewhere, but no idea of the characteristics of the course - which hasn't been announced yet.

Wishful thinking by anyone who underestimates Rory's best form - he'll never be Tiger-like and expect to win every tournament, but that's probably a good thing.

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Post by McLaren Wed 15 Apr 2015, 1:49 pm

Kwini

I agree, it is very unlikely anyone will ever emulate tigers relentless winning in his prime. Three or four wins a year would be the most I would ever expect McIlroy to achieve, and hopefully one of the wins would be a major every couple of years. The fields are just so strong on the PGAT in this era that I wonder if getting to 20 career regular/play off PGAT wins is possible, even for someone like McIlory?

At present Rory only has 4 PGAT wins (excluding WGC's and majors).
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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 15 Apr 2015, 1:56 pm

Mac,
If you exclude WGC's and Majors you're taking out half of Rory's schedule. And most of the "regular" events he plays are basically warm-ups!
But I disagree that 20 regular Tour wins are unachievable, the number of times Furyk is in contention demonstrate the wins are there - or in his case the runner up finishes.
Can't imagine Dustin Johnson won't clock up 20 wins if he plays a reasonably full schedule.

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Post by McLaren Wed 15 Apr 2015, 3:22 pm

Kwini

I agree that Rory has a high proportion of WGC's and majors as part of his schedule, but my point was in comparing him to the previous generation who have 20, 30 and 40+ PGAT wins.

eg (including wgc's and majors)

Woods 79
Phil 42
vj 34
Love 20
Norman
Els 19
Kite 19
Price 18


If Rory gets to even 20-25 PGAT wins including majors and WGC's that will have been an astonishing career given the ever increasing quality of the field.
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Post by Shotrock Wed 15 Apr 2015, 3:26 pm

I think Rory does get to 30+ wins (provided he's healthy). He's just that good at times.

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 15 Apr 2015, 3:36 pm

I don't think you can compare Americans' achievements on their Home Tour with those tourists from other Tours.
All the non-American golfers you mention had allegiances to other Tours for much of the early part of their career and split their schedule accordingly.

Comparing McIlroy and Els/Norman/Price/Singh is apples and apples.
Comparing his achievements in America with Americans is apples and oranges.


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Post by McLaren Wed 15 Apr 2015, 3:41 pm

Kwini

By the time he is 30 Rory will have lived in the US for 10 years playing predominantly in the US. It is his home tour now, and will become ever more so as time passes.

Jordan Spieth has probably only clocked up 10 years of US golf so far. Is he not american? boxing


Although my main point was that it is not fair to compare McIlroy's PGAT wins total to anyone of the previous generation. The field is just too strong now for one person to beat it 30 or 40 times in a career.
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Post by Shotrock Wed 15 Apr 2015, 3:44 pm

Mac - I agree with your intuition that the US PGA tour fields are deeper and stronger than ever and that winning is simply more difficult than 10, 15, 20+ years ago. Still, I like Rory's chances.

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Post by McLaren Wed 15 Apr 2015, 3:51 pm

Shotrock, time is certainly on Rory's side and he wouldn't need an astonishing win rate to reach the 30 PGAT wins mark in his career. (if we include regular PGAT events, play offs, wgc's and majors)

He is already at 9, and is only 25. So he needs 21 wins in 15 years if he stays reasonably competitive until he is 40. That is only 1.4 wins a year for the remainder of his career.
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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 15 Apr 2015, 4:25 pm

What's Spieth got to do with it?

Spieth didn't play a Gulf event, he won't be playing the Irish Open or Wentworth, Spieth won't be playing R2D tournaments, get a grip Mac.

I certainly feel Rory will win twenty PGA Tour events, no messing, but let's compare his "Tour" record with a proper peer group.
Is the Tour deeper? Of course, but you've still got to beat the same number (actually the preponderance of limited field events means smaller fields) of competitors. (Someone recently produced a hypothesis that Tiger accumulated his 70-odd wins against easier-to-beat opposition, Majors excluded of course, due to the limited field factor.)

And, Oh! I see you've added the WGC's and Majors back in. Changing the goalposts again.

It was my position that Rory would win 20 bog-standard Tour events during his career. Still what I think.



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Post by McLaren Wed 15 Apr 2015, 4:45 pm

Kwini

I introduced spieth to get an idea of what you considered to be American.  Although you do seem to have ignored the use of a smiley which indicated it was a point that was ever so slightly of the teasing variety.  This is inkeeping with the slightly more prickly kwini we have to deal with these days. ;) . And FFS, take note of the smiley.

But on reflection it might be worth you giving us an idea of how long you think a player would have to spend living in the US and playing the PGAT before they were at no disadvantage to native players?


I had to add the other events back in as it would have taken ages to work out PGAT win numbers excluding wgc, majors etc.

After all that my position is that Rory might struggle to rack up 20 bog standard tour events in his career, as will everyone else in his era.


As for someone trying to make a case for tiger's 70 wins being devalued in some way does that surprise you?  There are tiger haters at every turn, who will forever refuse to acknowledge the greatness of tigers play.
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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 15 Apr 2015, 5:09 pm

Mac,
Some players play two (or three) Tours, others play just one.

All I'm suggesting is that guys who are members of multiple Tours have a diffused focus (as represented by number of events played on respective Tours); some fall between two stools to the detriment of their performances anyway and thank goodness Rory seems, to some extent at least, to have excelled in performing reasonably well whenever he tees it up.

Europeans, for instance, who very seldom play anywhere but the PGA Tour would include Davis, Owen, Cejka, Pettersson, Jacobson, Knox, Laird.
But guys like Poults, Sergio, Kaymer, etc, etc play two Tours and therefore fewer events in America.

As for Tiger, the point was that it is easier to beat 60 or 70 golfers than it is 155, provided that 155 were all Tour-level players. Wasn't a dis on Tiger or anyone else.

No smiley. Not prickly at all, just don't see the point of starting a debate and then changing your motion halfway through.

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Post by GPB Thu 16 Apr 2015, 2:38 am

Kwini:  Masters Hangover this week?  I don't say it enough, but I really do enjoy your previews and even took Jimmy Walker in fantasy last week.

Thanks for Nothing! Very Happy

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Post by BlueCoverman Thu 16 Apr 2015, 9:12 am

So did I Kwini! I was all set to pick Spieth but then changed my mind after reading your preview promoting the likelihood of a Jimmy Walker victory! Rolling Eyes

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Post by 1GrumpyGolfer Thu 16 Apr 2015, 10:52 am

Hmm, Blue, that's your excuse and you're sticking to it Whistle

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Post by LadyPutt Thu 16 Apr 2015, 11:00 am

BlueCoverman wrote:So did I Kwini! I was all set to pick Spieth but then changed my mind after reading your preview promoting the likelihood of a Jimmy Walker victory! Rolling Eyes
Me too censored
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Post by McLaren Thu 16 Apr 2015, 11:23 am

I saw a tweet suggesting that Jimmy's wife had hinted that he was carrying an injury during the masters. Come on kwini, we should have been told. furious
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Post by BlueCoverman Thu 16 Apr 2015, 12:19 pm

That's very poor kwini, can't believe you didn't give us all the necessary information!  Whistle

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 16 Apr 2015, 1:12 pm

Yup, Jimmy Walker did none of us any favours. He and Snedeker were my bankers (substitute suitable rhyming slang) of the week - went from first to worst in Grumps's game and finished about 18,000th in the pgatour.com fanto game after being as high as 21st.
Start all over again.


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Post by ralphjohn69 Thu 16 Apr 2015, 2:12 pm

At least my participation in Sportform's Masters competition stopped you finishing last in that too Kwini!

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Post by pedro Thu 16 Apr 2015, 2:18 pm

McLaren wrote:I saw a tweet suggesting that Jimmy's wife had hinted that he was carrying an injury during the masters.  Come on kwini, we should have been told.  furious
He was probably carrying all the cash he had accumulated during the season to prevent his wife spending it.

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