Masters 2012: Phil Mickelson Looking to Join Elite Group with Top Ten Finish

Jerry Tapp@@StatsonTappSenior Analyst IIIApril 5, 2012

Although Phil Mickelson finished out of the top ten in last year’s Masters for only the second time since 1999, a top ten finish this year will put him in elite company in the storied history of the tournament. Mickleson has 13 top ten finishes in the Masters since his first tee shot at Augusta in 1991. Six legendary golfers have 14 or more top ten finishes in the Masters. They are:

22: Jack Nicklaus
17: Ben Hogan
16: Gary Player, Sam Snead, Tom Watson
14: Byron Nelson

Only two golfers, Tiger Woods and K.J. Choi, have finished in the top ten in both 2010 and 2011. In fact, Tiger has an active streak of seven straight top ten finishes in the Masters. In addition, five of last year's top ten finishers had never had top ten finishes at the Masters before: champion Charl Schwartzel, Jason Day, Geoff Oglivy, Bo Van Pelt and Ryan Palmer.

In looking at those golfers who have finished in the top ten since 2000, 73 different golfers have one or more top ten finishes. Of those, 28 have finished in the top ten on two or more occasions. 

Here’s a look at the golfers who have finished in the top ten in the Masters since 2000:

10: Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods
6: Vijay Singh
5: Angel Cabrera, Ernie Els
3: Luke Donald, K.J. Choi, Fred Couples, Chad Campbell, Jim Furyk, Padraig Harrington, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Retief Goosen, Jose Maria Olazabal, Chris DiMarco

Of the 15 golfers listed above, only Mickelson, Woods, Singh, Cabrera, Couples, Olazabal have won a Masters. It looks like history is right at Lefty's fingertips. 

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