10 Incredible Stats from the PGA Tour in 2014
In some sense, all stats from the PGA Tour are incredible to the average golfer. For example, can you wrap your head around swinging your driver an average of 123.5 miles per hour, as Bubba Watson does?
Consider the fact that Watson is likely giving some thought to accuracy and finding the fairway when he tees it up—which means he's not swinging at 100 percent—and the figure becomes even more incredible.
As we said in the last look at incredible stats from the PGA Tour, with the advent of ShotLink technology, we're inundated with more PGA Tour-related data than we could ever hope to digest.
Nevertheless, after another examination of the figures, here are some truly incredible stats from the PGA Tour in 2014 thus far.
Matt Kuchar has made 19 starts this year. He's finished inside the top 10 better than 50 percent of the time (10 top-10 finishes).
Jim Furyk has competed in 15 events this year. He's recorded seven top-10 finishes, including three second-place finishes.
Most impressively, however, Sergio Garcia, Adam Scott and Rory McIlroy have all finished inside the top 10 seven times in 11 starts (better than 63 percent of the time).
Of course, none of these players will approach Tiger Woods' 17 top-10 finishes in 20 starts in 2000.
Sergio Garcia's Scoring Average
In 41 rounds this year, Sergio Garcia has used a total of 2,645 strokes to get his golf ball into the various holes he's played.
That doesn't mean anything to you? Perhaps this will: Garcia's scoring average is 68.9. Impressive, right?
Even more impressive: The second-best scoring average on tour this year, Rory McIlroy's, is 69.3.
Thus, the Spaniard is (on average) nearly half a stroke better than anyone else on tour in 2014. Incredible.
Rickie Fowler's Total-to-Par in Majors
As Kyle Porter of CBS Sports' Eye on Golf blog boldly stated, "Rickie Fowler has beaten 98 percent of golfers in the 2014 majors."
Fowler is a combined 18-under in his 12 rounds of major golf thus far in 2014. He finished tied for fifth at the Masters and tied for second at the U.S. Open and The Open Championship.
The next best score at the majors thus far: Rory McIlroy at 11 under.
Phil Mickelson's Lack of Top-10s
Let's take a look at Phil Mickelson's number of top-10 finishes in recent years.
- 2010: 6
- 2011: 7
- 2012: 7
- 2013: 7
- 2014: 0
If you'll notice, the cupboard is bare for Mickelson in 2014. He does, however, have eight top-25 finishes.
Still, since turning pro in 1992, Mickelson hasn't had a year devoid of a top-10 finish.
Bubba Watson's Driving Percentage 320-Plus
Not a secret: Bubba Watson hits the golf ball a long way. He's leading the tour in driving distance, averaging 313.6 yards off the tee.
However, here's something even more incredible: In 52 rounds, Watson has hit 40.9 percent of his 66 measured drives more than 320 yards.
Right behind him, Dustin Johnson has hit 39.5 percent of his measured drives over 320. Nobody else on tour has done better than 33.3 percent.
Graham DeLaet's Greens or Fringe in Regulation
Largely self-taught, Graham DeLaet is incredibly precise with his approach shots.
Really, there's little difference between putting from the edge of the green and putting from the fringe. And on greens that run in excess of 10 on the Stimpmeter, it's easy for a good shot to trickle onto the fringe.
Thus, "greens or fringe in regulation" may be a better metric of the accuracy of a golfer's approach shot than just "greens in regulation."
The leader in that statistical category this year is the aforementioned DeLaet. Across 63 rounds this season, he has hit 76.9 percent of greens or fringes in regulation. He's more than one percent better than the second-ranked player in the category.
Vijay Singh's Sand Save Percentage
Vijay Singh switched to Hopkins wedges this year as part of a new endorsement deal.
Seems like a good move so far.
The Fijian has saved par from the sand 64 percent of the time and leads the tour in the statistical category by 1.04 percent. Singh has never been a particularly fantastic sand player. Last year, he was 112th on tour in sand saves, salvaging par just 48.6 percent of the time.
Bully for Hopkins Golf.
The Longest Putt Made This Year...
While Tiger Woods' 2014 season has been defined by a back injury followed by back surgery and limited play, he has managed to secure one notable distinction this year.
Woods made the longest recorded putt of 2014 at the WGC-Cadillac Championship. He poured in a 91-footer on the fourth hole.
The putt is 14 feet longer than the next-longest roll with the flatstick this year.
Enjoy the video of the wonderputt above.
Tim Clark's GIR Streak
Tim Clark just won the RBC Canadian Open, which raised his profile somewhat. Here's another reason to take note of the South African: He hit 28 greens in a row earlier this year.
Think about it. Clark effectively played a round of competitive golf and hit every single green in regulation. Then, he went out the next day and hit every single green in regulation on the front nine.
What's your longest streak of greens in regulation? Like two?
Several players have hit 27 straight greens this year, including Jim Furyk and Kevin Chappell.
Kevin Streelman's Birdie Streak
Kevin Streelman's streak of seven straight birdies to close out the Travelers Championship was ludicrous. And the most impressive aspect of the achievement: The birdie run gave Streelman a one-stroke victory.
Jason Gore and Troy Matteson had streaks of seven holes under par this year, but neither of their red-hot putter-fueled runs led them to victory.
Streelman's streak is an almost providential instance of getting hot at the right time.
All stats courtesy of PGATour.com.