The 5 Most Underrated Pro Golfers
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These players have performed in the big events and have earned their status in the golf kingdom.
Who are some players just under the radar who have the game to win big but for whatever reason haven't.
Here are five players who deserve more recognition from the media and fans.
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Zach Johnson has been a member of the PGA Tour for eight seasons. He has won nine events, including the 2007 Masters.
He won two events in 2012, the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial and the John Deere Classic.
Zach finished in the top 25 in 11 of the 25 tournaments that he entered last year.
He ranks only 168th in driving distance, averaging 281 yards. But with a percentage of 68, he is 14th in fairways hit.
Johnson is also No. 8 in strokes gained putting and is No. 9 in the All-Around category, which means you will win a ton of money on the PGA Tour.
Johnson is a humble, quiet guy from the Midwest. He doesn't wear a colorful wardrobe or make outlandish comments when a microphone is stuck in his face.
He is just one of those guys who are solid from tee to green and in the clubhouse after his round.
Johnson has played on several Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup teams and has won more than $26 million in prize money. Throughout his career he has been one of the most consistent players on the tour.
He is very happy letting Rory, Phil and Tiger grab headlines.
He just smiles all the way to the bank.
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Steve Stricker becomes a media darling whenever it is time to pick a Ryder Cup or Presidents Cup team. Stricker has to be on the team to partner with Tiger Woods. Tiger likes to pair with Stricker because he knows just how good he really is.
Other than those times or when he is collecting one of his 12 PGA Tour wins, no one hears or reads anything about Stricker.
He lives in Madison, Wisconsin, which hardly has a climate conducive to year-round golf. He is another of those Midwestern born and bred guys who doesn't necessarily want or seek media attention.
He is happy toiling in relative obscurity.
But since winning the PGA Tour's Comeback Player of the Year in 2006 and 2007, Stricker has won nine events.
He won three titles in 2009, and twice in both 2010 and 2011. He won the first event of 2012 at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Hawaii.
In addition, Stricker had 11 top-25 finishes in 19 starts in 2012. His 2012 earnings of $3.4 million brought his career winnings to $35 million, which ranks him No. 8 on the PGA Tour's All-Time money list.
Stricker is ranked No. 12 in the world, but he was the highest-ranked American player for more than a year in the Official World Golf Rankings.
He is one of the best putters on the tour and is a threat to win every single week.
His lack of a major title is the only thing that keeps him from superstardom and automatic entrance in the World Golf Hall of Fame.
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Peter Hanson is not that recognizable in the United States. He has won six times on the European Tour, including two wins this year.
He won the KLM Open in September and held off Rory McIlroy to win the BMW Masters in October.
Hanson was also a member of the European Ryder Cup Team that pulled off that dramatic win over the U.S. team at Medinah.
In addition to his two European Tour wins this year, he has eight top-10 finishes and is No. 2 behind Rory McIlroy on the Race to Dubai.
Hanson has been performing well in big events of late. He has three top-10 finishes in the last seven major championships. He finished tied for third behind Louis Oosthuizen and Bubba Watson at the 2012 Masters and tied for seventh at the PGA Championship on Kiawah Island.
He also had a fifth-place tie in the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship and a fourth-place tie at the WGC-Cadillac at Doral in March.
Being from Sweden and playing mainly on the European Tour, Hanson may not be too familiar to American golf fans.
Don't forget the name, though. You will be seeing a lot more of him on leaderboards in the future.
Bo Van Pelt
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Bo Van Pelt has been a member of the PGA Tour for eight years. He only has one official PGA Tour win. It came at the 2009 U.S. Bank Championship in Milwaukee.
He won the unofficial CIMB Asia Pacific Classic in Malaysia in 2011 and finished runner-up in the 2012 CIMB. The CIMB will become an official PGA Tour event next year and will be one of the new tournaments that will start the 2014 season.
Van Pelt had 10 top-10 finishes on the PGA Tour in 2012, including a runner-up to Tiger Woods at the AT&T National at Congressional.
He earned $3 million and finished ranked at No. 23 in the FedEx Cup standings. He has moved up to No. 23 in the Official World Golf Rankings.
He is another one of those quiet players who grew up in Richmond, Indiana, resides in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and doesn't seek out the spotlight.
He just lets his clubs do the talking.
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You never hear Carl Pettersson's name being bandied about as a potential winner on the PGA Tour every week.
But he has won some very good golf tournaments on some very difficult golf courses.
He won the 2006 Memorial at Muirfield Village Country Club, the 2008 Wyndham at Sedgefield Country Club, the 2010 RBC Canadian on St. Georges in Toronto and the 2012 RBC Heritage at Hilton Head.
Pettersson was born in Sweden and resides in North Carolina. Although he has never been on a Ryder Cup team, his numbers put him into the conversation for a captain's pick for Jose Maria Olazabal this year.
He played on the European Tour early in his career. But he has been a member of the PGA Tour since 2003 after earning his card through Q-School in the fall of 2002.
His best finish in a major was being in contention down the stretch at Kiawah in the 2012 PGA Championship. He finished tied for third behind Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose.
In addition to his win in Hilton Head and third-place finish at the PGA Championship, he had two runner-up finishes in 2012. He was second at the Sony Open in January and again at the Shell Houston Open in April.
He ended the year No. 7 on the FedEx Cup and has moved to No 30 on the Official World Golf Rankings.
Pettersson can control his power fade off the tee and wields his long putter adequately on the greens. He is not particularly strong in any one category but is not exceedingly weak in any one area either.
He is coming off one of his best years and should have renewed confidence that may carry over into 2013.