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Golf Barometer: Kim's Manhood-Robbing 78

David Ferris

David Ferris

Ferris covers the PGA Tour for RotoWire. He is an award-winning sports writer and a veteran fantasy columnist. He also is a scratch golfer.


UPGRADE

Lucas Glover:
It's good to see him back in form, and hoisting a trophy, after all the personal problems he's been through the last few months. The Mountain Man look (full beard) seems to work for him, and in a way it seems to encapsulate where he is in life and on the course these days - a man, insular, against the elements. Welcome back, G-Love. We know you can be a Top-30 player on the PGA Tour from here to the end of the season.

Jonathan Byrd:
He's getting a lot of milage from his tremendous iron play; otherwise, there's no overwhelming strength or weakness to his game. It would be nice to see him play more quickly, however; most golfers visualize their shots before address, but Byrd always seems like he's creating a multi-dimensional panorama. Keep it moving, JB. Otherwise, we're on board with your breakthrough year. The playoff bogey was a disappointment, but give Byrd credit for his gutsy birdie that put him in the extra session.

Pat Perez:
He's grabbed three heavy checks in his last four starts, flashing his star potential yet again. But a closing 75 in the final group at Quail Hollow was a major letdown, and Perez's body language was terrible for that entire round. Is he tough enough to be a consistent winner on Tour?

Rory Sabbatini:
Say this for the thick-skinned veteran - nothing seems to faze him. Even the looming threat of a suspension didn't affect his focus at Quail Hollow; he shot four strong rounds, including a 66-65 on the weekend, en route to a solo third and a meaty $442K check. Sabbatini isn't in the midst of a Hall of Fame career, but he might be talented enough to sneak into a major sometime when the world least expects it. Personal conviction will never be the problem here.

Luke Donald:
He's probably as good a favorite as any this week at The Players; it's a course that plays to his strengths, and he's been terrific all season. But if Donald is in a pressure situation Sunday, against this loaded field, will he be able to close?

DOWNGRADE

Anthony Kim:
The strong showing in Houston looked like the start of a comeback, but since then Kim has been all over the place - you can see a 68 or a 78 from him at any time. Disappointing trunk slams at the Masters and the Valero Texas Open started the skid, and Kim closed out his Quail Hollow experience with a manhood-robbing 78. Is this a physical issue, or is the confidence and trust not all the way back yet?

Sean O'Hair:
He's missed five cuts in a row, and there's been volatility elsewhere - he had the run-in with Rory Sabbatini, and there's been some firings in Camp O'Hair (he's walked away from a caddy and a swing coach). If O'Hair can simply make the cut at Sawgrass, it's a triumph.

HOLDING STEADY

Tiger Woods:
The good news is that he's healthy enough to play this week; the bad news is that he absolutely hates the Sawgrass layout. Tiger would never admit it, but he's just hoping to get timing and green confidence back this week. His next big thing is obviously the British Open. I'd be stunned if he wins this week.