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PGA Tour Stats Review: Through the Byron Nelson

Ed Cushing

Ed Cushing

Cushing covers the PGA Tour for RotoWire, bringing a sabermetric approach to golf stats. Retired and living in the mountains of North Carolina, Cushing is in the running for the Most Interesting Man in Fantasy Sports. He's golfed the Doral Blue Monster, Harbour Town GC, Hilton Head and Augusta National, among many other tough courses. A classically trained pianist, Cushing still plays professionally. He roots for the University of Virginia because the Cavaliers may lose the game, but they ALWAYS win the party. He also made a fortune off the '72 Dolphins.

PGA Tour Stats through last week's Byron Nelson Championship



EVENT WINNER DRIVE DRIVE DRIVE DRIVE GIR GIR PUTTS PUTTS EAGLE/ BOGEY/
%of56 RNK DIS DIS RNK %of72 RNK Per GIR RNK RND RNK BIRDIE DBL
Tourney of Champ. Byrd, -24 80 11 273.4 21 86.1 10 1.69 8 29 3 1/25 3/0
Sony Open M.Wilson, -16 73 2 289.3 24 75.110 1.67 5 27.5 6 0/21 5/0
Bob Hope - Five Rds Vegas, -27 75 13 308.7 3 76.719 1.65 22 27.4 16 1/34 9/0
Farmers Insur.Open B.Watson, -16 50 28 316.6 1 81.91 1.73 26 29 32 2/20 8/0
Phoenix Open M.Wilson, -18 66 16 290.3 68 84.71 1.66 11 28.8 39 0/22 4/0
Pebble Bch,Pro-Am Points, -15 80 7 285.6 40 69.4 17 1.6 1 27 2 2/23 10/1
Northern Trust Baddeley, -12 50 57 276.5 42 72.2 3 1.83 54 28.5 35 1/15 3/1
MayakobaGolfClass. Wagner, -17 67.9 36 277.9 54 79.2 4 1.68 7 28 8 1/17 2/0
Honda Classic Sabbatini, -9 53.6 56 286.3 26 65.321 1.77 19 27 2 0/15 6/0
WGC-Cadillac(Doral) Watney, -16 58.9 12 297.6 14 68.112 1.57 2 26.3 9 1/22 6/1
Puerto Rico Open M.Bradley, -16 64.3 24 293.1 42 81.92 1.75 20 30 49 2/18 6/0
Transitions Champ. Woodland, -15 57.7 54 296.5 7 70.829 1.65 5 27 2 0/22 7/0
Arnold Palmer Inv. Laird, -8 71.4 23 296.6 5 68.1 20 1.78 22 28.8 18 1/18 10/1
Houston Open Mickelson, -20 53.6 67 314.6 6 77.8 11 1.64 3 28 11 1/27 7/1
Masters Schwartzel, -14 66.1 31 278.4 44 68.018 26.75 2 2/17 7/0
Texas Open Steele, -8 64.3 7 303 10 58.340 1.69 13 26 2 0/17 7/1
The Heritage Snedeker, -12 80.4 3 271 59 61.130 1.59 2 25.8 4 0/21 9/0
Zurich Classic B. Watson, -15 71.4 13 331.4 1 80.6 1 1.74 41 29.3 57 3/16 5/0
Wells Fargo Champ. L.Glover, -15 46.4 49 303 25 70.8 26 1.59 1 29.5 3 1/22 9/0
THE PLAYERS K.Choi, -13 71.4 10 280.8 43 69.4 21 1.64 8 27 6 1/19 6/1
Crowne Plaza D. Toms, -15 67.9 4 299.1 28 72.2 4 1.58 1 27.3 9 1/20 5/1
ByronNelson Champ K.Bradley P1, -3 58.9 10 316.8 7 65.3 6 1.85 47 29.5 45 0/13 10/0
AVERAGE 64.92 24.23 294.84 25.91 72.86 13.91 1.683 15.14 27.9 16.36
Byron Nelson Champ R.Palmer P2, -3 46.4 57 321 5 63.9 13 1.739 14 28.8 25 0/17 14/0
'10 Memorial Top 4J. Rose, -18 82.1 10 263.1 53 73.6 13 1.59 1 27 2 0/24 6/0
R. Fowler, -15 83.9 6 274.9 24 75 9 1.69 16 27.8 11 2/17 4/1
B.Von.Pelt, -12 76.8 29 278.5 16 72.2 23 1.73 32 28 13 0/15 3/0
R. Barnes, -12 69.6 56 253.8 70 79.2 2 1.7 24 28.8 29 2/14 2/2



A LOOK AT THE BYRON NELSON

Three-under took the win? Say that again!

Check out the final leaderboard as the usual winds became high winds in the third round and generated two scores of 80 and one 81. In the final round, the high winds then added gusts up to 40 mph producing one 81 and three 80s one being the second day the player shot 80. Others in the mix after 54 holes, faded at the end.

In the statistic lineup for both winner Keagen Bradley and runner-up Ryan Palmer, it appears Palmer's stats would support a win. We all know statistics are built on performance and the stats sometimes can be deceiving.

The round-by-round putts-per-GIR helps tell why Palmer didn't get a clear win:

1234F
Bradley 1.7691.6252.0001.9171.857
Palmer 1.5001.7001.9171.8331.739

Palmer's first round was diluted by the subsequent three rounds. His 14 bogies - six in his final round - also tells why he didn't win. On the other hand, Bradley's closing round of three birdies and one bogey tells why he did win. And don't forget Palmer's dunk in the payoff - another double bogey.

Both players' tournament stats came close to their 2011 season numbers:

Bradley 2011

Driving accuracy: 60.49
Driving distance: 298.5
GIR: 65.37

Bradley at Nelson

Driving accuracy: 58.9
Driving distance: 316.8
GIR: 65.3

Palmer 2011

Driving accuracy: 56.4
Driving distance: 321.0
GIR: 63.9

Palmer at Nelson

Driving accuracy: 46.4
Driving distance: 296.4
GIR: 65.31

THIS WEEK: THE MEMORIAL TOURNAMENT

The top-four players' stats from last year's Memorial are listed above to give you a feel for what it took to be within the top-5 last year. The differences are clear. Once on the green, it was a putting contest.

Justin Rose's closing bogey-free 6-under slammed the door for a clear win. Ricky Fowler's closing round had four birdies, three bogeys and one double bogey that couldn't stand up against Roses' onslaught.

It's well known that Jack Nicklaus' courses have punitive rough, which might have player's dropping down from drivers to 3-metal or hybrid clubs off the tee. All four players appeared to try to have a second shot from short grass in order to play for position on Nicklaus' undulating greens.

Fowler followed up his low first-round 65 with another low round 66. This week, players will need strong GIR figures, corral birdies at the par-4s, accuracy from 50-75 yards, proximity to the hole and experience - no rookie has won this event.
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