I worked with SI’s statistical guru, David Sabino, to develop a mathematical formula to determine the top 10 PGA Tour players. The rankings incorporate 15 different statistical categories, including wins, top 10s, cuts made, earnings, total driving, greens in regulation, putting average, save percentage, eagles and birdies. Some are weighted to grant them additional influence, so it’s more reflective of overall play than simply dollars earned.
Players lose ground if they take a week off, so the list won’t go stagnant with the same old names sitting at the top. This week’s scores ranged from 203 for No. 1 to 108 for No. 9, and went all the way down to single digits for the approximately 365 players ranked each week.
1. Tiger Woods. Woods showed improvement at the Memorial, but his distance control wasn’t dialed in and his putting was only good, not great. He also showed the effects of his new schedule: instead of coming off his break strong, he was rusty from lack of practice. (Last Week: 1)
2. Phil Mickelson. The MRI, the cortisone shot and the WD from Memphis prove that Phil’s wrist tweak is legit despite some early questions. Unlike Tiger, he prefers to play the week before a major, so the time off to let his wrist heal could hurt his Open chances more than it might some others. (Last Week: 2)
3. Vijay Singh. Singh had another of what’s become a typical week for him. One really good round (67 on Sunday) and three steady ones. Those keep him from truly contending but usually put him somewhere in the top 25. It’s a recipe for FedEx Cup success but not terribly satisfying. (Last Week: 3)
4. Zach Johnson. Johnson’s hectic post-Masters schedule may have finally caught up with him as he fell ill with strep throat and had to withdraw on Thursday. Perhaps the time off is a blessing in disguise, although his game had been sharp. Will it still be when he comes back? (Last Week: 4)
5. Rory Sabbatini. Sabbatini was home with his feet on the coffee table and was probably happy as heck not to have to sit through all the rain stoppages in Ohio. On the other hand, the soft conditions and low scores might’ve had him chomping at the bit. (Last Week: 5)
6. Charles Howell. Howell made the cut at Memorial and was playing fairly well until he exploded with a third-round 80 and withdrew. No word if an injury was involved, but the way things were going last week, the smart money is on a balky wrist. (Last Week: 6)
7. Adam Scott. Scott had a chance coming down the stretch and looked like he might catch K.J. Choi after a birdie at 16. But a three-putt bogey at 17 dropped him to fifth and proved that putting is still his nemesis. (Last Week: 7)
8. K.J. Choi. Choi looked great on Sunday, blowing out a front-nine 30 and then holding on down the stretch with some deft sand play. He’s a dark horse, but he’s got a good Open game. (Last Week: Not Ranked)
9. Aaron Baddeley. Like his countryman, Scott, Baddeley was in the mix at the start of the final round, but a so-so 71 did nothing to improve his standing as guys flew up the leaderboard by shooting five, six or seven under. He putted well (26 total), but missed too many fairways (64%) and too many greens (50%). (Last Week: 10)
10. Luke Donald. By finishing 35th at the Memorial, Donald showed his trademark consistency, but he didn’t really do anything well, a trend reflected in his scores of 73-70-71-70. Nothing bad about that, but not nearly good enough to contend. He’s got to pick up some slack somewhere if he wants to win. (Last Week: 8)