PGA Golf 2010: Power Ranking the Top 10 American Players on the Tour
Throughout the year, we have seen tons and tons of Americans being displayed on the PGA Tour. Some are rather new faces to us, while we still have our household names.
Some so-called "experts" have theories that the tide is turning in the sport of golf, and European players are beginning to excel in the game of golf, while the Americans are slowly falling back and being left behind.
Despite that theory, the U.S. has plenty of great golfing names to offer to the PGA Tour and the game.
With that being said, who are the best American players on the tour?
I have compiled a list of the 10 best players the PGA Tour has to offer.
Feel free to make suggestions on who you think should be on this list as well!
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10. Hunter Mahan
Hunter Mahan is one of the great young golfers the PGA Tour has to offer. At age 28, it looks as if we are just witnessing him coming into his own as a golfer.
Mahan has one win to his name so far this year, as he edged out fellow American Ricky Fowler by one stroke at the Waste Management Phoenix Open in late February.
So far in this year's majors, Mahan tied for eighth at the Masters, tied for 37th at The Open championship (British Open), and he failed to make the cut at the U.S. Open.
Mahan has the ability to be one of the best American golfers we have ever seen, as his past has shown. He is very familiar with being at the top of rankings, going back all the way to his high school days.
9. Bubba Watson
Bubba Watson is another one of the few left-handed players that not only the United States has to offer, but the PGA Tour as well. Nevertheless, the guy lands a place on this list.
Watson has one win so far this season, which was exactly a month ago (June) at the Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Connecticut. This also happens to be his first and only win on the PGA Tour.
Along with that win this year, he has three top-10 finishes.
In the majors so far this year, he's missed the cut at The Open Championship and did not play in the Masters or U.S. Open.
Watson continues to capture his dream of being a top golfer on the PGA Tour.
8. Ricky Barnes
Ricky Barnes was one of the few Americans that stuck around for their country at the British Open, as many of the top players were from places other than the United States.
Is it just me, or is it rather strange that this guy has yet to win an event on the PGA Tour?
He seems to always stick around close, so one would think he would have at last one win to his name, if not more.
He did earn a tie for first in the CVS Caremark Charity Challenge in late June this year, though.
Despite not having a win this season, he still has six top-10 finishes, which proves again that he knows how to stick around; he just fails to get it done on Sunday.
So far in this year's majors, Barnes tied for tenth in the Masters, tied for 27th in the U.S. Open, and tied for 44th in the British Open.
Barnes may not have a major win yet, but it is coming. He'll hang around one day to grab a tournament win.
7. Dustin Johnson
Dustin Johnson is yet another youngster the PGA Tour shows off, and like many, he could be a household name in the next couple of years.
Although he only turned pro in 2007, Johnson already has three wins on tour, including his one win so far this year, the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
Most know him for another tournament at Pebble Beach: The 2010 U.S. Open.
After going into Sunday with a three-stroke lead, a final round score of 82 ruined his chance to win the major. He would go on to finish tied for eighth.
He also tied for 38th at the Masters and tied for 14th at the British Open.
Don't be surprised when you see this kid at the top of the leaderboard in a couple of weeks at the PGA Championship.
6. Matt Kuchar
Early in his career, Matt Kuchar battled and battled to keep his PGA Tour card. Now, in his prime, he is one of the best golfers the United States has to offer.
Although he doesn't have a win to his name so far this year, he has seven top-10 finishes, which is tied for first in 2010 with Retief Goosen.
With no wins, he has still put up very respectable numbers, which include tying for sixth at the U.S. Open, tying for 25th at the Masters, and tying for 27th at the British Open.
While he doesn't win very often, Kuchar continues to put up good numbers and deserves a spot as one of the top American players on the tour.
5. Ben Crane
Ben Crane is one of the few that were born into the game of golf. His family taught him to play at such a young age, and it looks as if it just stuck with him throughout his life.
Crane has captured one win so far this season, as he edged out three others by one stroke to win the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines.
Along with that, he also has five top-10 finishes, another great number to add to his yearly resume.
However, in championship majors, he hasn't had good luck, as he missed the cut at both the U.S. Open and the British Open; he also finished tied for 25th at the Masters.
Crane continues to make a leap up the leaderboard and is persistently trying to become one of the best golfers the tour has to offer.
4. Phil Mickelson
When you think left-handed golfers, Phil Mickelson has to be the guy that comes to mind, not the other American on this list, Bubba Watson. For some, Mickelson may be the only lefty that anyone is aware of, and rightfully so, because of his successful game.
While Lefty hasn't had the year he would like, it's impossible to leave him out of the Top Five with his ability and history. Wins or not, this guy is still one of the best golfers the U.S. has to offer.
So far in 2010, he has one win, coming at the Masters. Along with that, he has five top-10 finishes.
Lefty finished tied for fourth at the U.S. Open and tied for 48th at the British Open, a finish he wasn't at all pleased with.
If it wasn't for a couple of really good and streaky golfers, Mickelson would be even higher on this list, but whenever someone out-plays you, you have to give them the respect they deserve.
However, no doubt, Phil Mickelson is a great golfer.
3. Tiger Woods
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, Tiger Woods still is one of the top American golfers. Like Mickelson, if it weren't for some hot, savvy golfers, he would be higher on this list too.
After his long layoff, none of us really knew what to expect when Tiger came back to the golf course.
Well, we have witnessed many types of Tigers so far. One day he drives well; one day he chips decent; the next he putts for birdie on every hole.
Unfortunately for him and the game of golf, he has failed to put it all together to this point. However, it will come together soon. It's how Tiger is.
So far this year, Tiger has yet to win an event and has two top-10 finishes.
He tied for fourth in both the Masters and the U.S. Open, and tied for 23rd in the British Open.
Those positions prove that Tiger is knocking on the door at yet another event win, and like I said, I feel it coming soon for Tiger.
2. Jim Furyk
Jim Furyk has always quietly stuck around in the Top 10 of the Official World Golf Rankings, and while some never notice it, it's time for his well-deserved recognition.
Furyk has two wins so far this year, coming at the the Transitions Championship and the Verizon Heritage.
He also has four top-10 finishes to add to those wins, and it is sure to increase as the end of the year is quickly closing in on us.
Despite having exceptional numbers throughout the year, he has failed to compete in major championships, as he missed the cut in both the British Open and the Masters. However, he did contend for the U.S. Open, where he finished tied for 16th.
If Furyk can capture another win (most notably the PGA Championship), he could be the best American golfer on the PGA Tour.
1. Steve Stricker
When you first saw this, I'm sure no one thought about the old Steve Stricker being the top guy on this list. Well, he has produced so far this year, and I believe he deserves it.
Stricker has claimed victories to the John Deere Classic and the Northern Trust Open, both very tough and competitive events in the golf world. Despite the competition, he has won both events by two strokes.
He also has put together five top-10 finishes so far this season, and he has plenty more that are right there.
No matter what tournament it has been this year, if Steve Stricker is in it, he will make a difference at one point or another, and the majority of the time, he's right there on Sunday ready to compete with golf's best players.
Like Furyk, Stricker hasn't had the best luck in major championships to this point. He tied for 30th at the Masters, followed by tying for 58th at the U.S. Open. A couple of weeks ago in the British Open at St. Andrews, he finished tied for 55th.
None of those is what Stricker wants during majors, but because of his numbers in other events, he is the best the U.S. has to offer to this point.