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PGA Tour Stats Review: Entering the AT&T National Pro-Am

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: AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am

Each week we'll list the statistical breakdown of the upcoming PGA Tour event. Below are the results of recent tournaments, including last week's Phoenix Open, and a look ahead to this week's even, the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.

2012 full-season results
2011 full-season results

2013 PGA Tour Events

EVENT WINNER DRIVE DRIVE GIR PUTTS PUTTS EAGLE/ BOGEY/
%of56 RANK DIS RANK %of72 RANK PER GIR RANK PER RND RANK BIRDIE DBL BOGEY
TOC D. Johnson -16 57.8 28 278.3 2 82.0 14 1.63 2 28.4 2 2/17 4/1
Sony Henley -24 55.4 8 293.1 51 83.3 2 1.62 4 27.7 17 0/26 2/0
Humana Gay -25, P1 81.5 2 279.7 75 83.3 4 1.65 38 27.8 35 0/27 2/0
Farmers Woods -14 57.1 17 307.2 2 69.4 34 1.66 1 28.5 11 2/21 7/2
Phoenix Mickelson -18 57.1 55 298.8 11 87.3 1 1.57 2 27.6 15 1/29 1/1
TOUR AVG 61.8 22.0 291.4 28.2 81.1 11.0 1.63 9.4 28.0 16.0 1/24 1.8/0.4

Last Week's Phoenix Open

Wire-to-Wire winner Phil Mickelson stashed away his 41st PGA Tour win with hardly a drop of sweat. Others also had a strong week worthy of a review of their performance as you can see below.

GOLFER DRIVE DRIVE GIR PUTTS PUTTS EAGLE/ BOGEY/ STK GN/
%of56 RANK DIS RANK %of72 RANK PER GIR RANK PER RND RANK BIRDIE DBL PUTT RANK
Mickelson -28 57.1 55 298.8 11 87.3 1 1.57 2 27.6 15 1/29 1/1 1.85 5
Snedeker -24 66.1 24 292.7 30 70.8 44 1.59 5 25.0 1 1/29 3/1 1.96 4
Piercy -23 60.7 42 297.0 19 79.2 6 1.53 1 26.5 6 1/28 5/1 2.99 1
R.Moore -22 64.3 32 298.7 13 81.9 4 1.61 7 26.0 20 0/27 3/1 2.32 2
Palmer -19 69.6 13 306.1 5 73.6 28 1.57 2 27.3 8 1/25 6/1 1.09 15
B.Haas -18 67.9 19 287.4 52 79.2 6 1.68 28 26.8 38 2/19 5/0 0.49 33
De Jonge -18 69.6 13 303.4 6 76.4 14 1.67 23 28.0 20 1/23 7/0 0.36 43
Steele -18 55.4 60 288.2 48 79.2 6 1.67 19 28.8 38 2/19 5/0 0.50 31
Every -17 75.0 5 297.5 18 84.7 2 1.66 17 29.3 52 1/22 5/1 1.22 12
Harrington -17 60.7 42 289.8 39 70.8 44 1.67 19 27.5 10 1/22 7/0 0.02 52
AVG 64.6 30.5 296.0 24.1 78.3 15.5 1.62 12.3 27.3 20.8 1.1/24.3 4.7/0.6 1.28 19.8

The top four players separated themselves with their putters. Seldom do we see the close break made by these first four players from the rest.

This Week's AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am

This event has a long history, dating to 1937 when Sam Snead won with a single-round 68 over George Von Elm's 72 at Rancho Sante Fe where the event was held before moving to Pebble Beach after World War II. The next year, when the event was made two rounds, Sam won again. Phil Mickelson, who lives in Rancho Santa Fe, won here last year.

This event uses three courses, Pebble Beach (p), Spyglass Hill (s) and Monterey Peninsula (m). Golfers eventually play all three with amateurs, and the fourth round is played at Pebble Beach. Pro-ams customarily have course set-ups that favor the amateurs, mostly by relatively easy pin positions - of course, the pros also take advantage of these easy pins that lead to low scores.

Consistently, Monterey plays the easiest of the three courses. Pebble is just a bit harder than Monterey, and Spyglass is the hardest. Those in daily-format leagues should concentrate on Monterey and Pebble and steer clear of Spyglass.

Last Five Winners and Runners-Up

2012 - Phil Mickelson, 17-under 269, 70 (s), 65 (m), 70 (p), 64 (p); Charlie Wi, 271
2011 - D.A. Points, 15-under 271; Hunter Mahan, 273
2010 - Dustin Johnson, 16-under 270; David Duval, J.B. Holmes, 271
2009 - Dustin Johnson, 15-under 201 (54 holes - weather); Mike Weir, 205
2008 - Steve Lowery, 10-under 278 (P1); Vijay Singh, 278 (P2)

2012 Low Rounds

Round 1: 61 (Monterey), Charlie Wi
Round 2: 64 (Monterey), Ryan Moore
Round 3: 65 (Monterey), Ken Duke
Round 4: 64 (Pebble Beach), Phil Mickelson

Attributes: Veterans do well here taking advantage of their experience. Also important are Par-5 birdies or better, proximity to hole, GIR and three-putt avoidance. A recent study has identified strong GIR stats are as productive in winning as strong putting.
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