Much speculation and potential controversy surrounded Corey Pavin as he made his Captain’s picks for the 2010 Ryder Cup team.
Many wondered if Pavin would add Tiger Woods to the U.S. team despite his recent struggles. Pavin eventually did add Woods to the team, making the U.S. team a Dream Team of sorts.
Pavin has three previous Ryder Cup appearances, with wins in two of them. He has surrounded himself with arguably the most talented group of golfers in the world for the 2010 Ryder Cup, with huge names like Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Hunter Mahan, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink and Zach Johnson.
Pavin will try to lead the Defending Ryder Cup Champion U.S. team to its first Ryder Cup victory on foreign soil since his last win in 1993.
How will Pavin’s Captain’s picks fair in the 2010 Ryder Cup? Time will tell but let’s examine their resumes.
Stewart Cink won his first major championship in 2009 at the British Open, defeating legendary Tom Watson in a playoff.
He was also a part of the 2008 U.S. Ryder Cup Championship team, where he and Chad Campbell defeated Justin Rose and Ian Poulter in Day One before eventually losing to Rose and Poulter in Day Two and to Graeme McDowell in Day Three Singles.
Having been a part of the U.S. Ryder Cup team in 2002, 2004, 2006, and 2008, Cink definitely brings a veteran leadership, but his 4-7-4 (W-L-H) career Ryder Cup record leaves little to be desired.
However, the rookie has made a big splash with five top-10 finishes and over $2.3 million in earnings.
Fowler brings flash and youthful exuberance to the U.S. Ryder Cup team, and is definitely capable of making an impact in his debut. He stays calm under pressure and never seems to let the stage get too big for him.
Fowler’s limited history in match play is impressive with a 7-1 overall record in his two Walker Cup appearances.
With only one previous Ryder Cup appearance and a 1-2-1 (W-L-H) record, Zach Johnson seems to be the oddest of Pavin’s Captain’s picks.
Johnson did have a tremendous 2009 season with nine top-10 finishes, and continues to play well in 2010 which is the main reason for him making it as a Captain’s pick.
Hopefully Johnson can take some of his 2009 momentum into the 2010 Ryder Cup and improve upon his less-than-stellar match-play record.
Maybe picked as a Captain’s pick to avoid a mass uproar of media, Tiger Woods is another pick that has a less-than-stellar career match-play record.
In five previous Ryder Cup appearances, Woods has a 9-13-2 (W-L-H) record and has only been a part of one Championship team (1999).
Woods brings a buzz and media attention to the U.S. team and, as usual, all eyes and cameras will be on the falling star.
Will Woods break his streak of bad play at the Ryder Cup in 2010? Probably not.
Woods has not won a PGA Tour event in over a year, and hasn’t shown many signs of improvement.