The big boys are charging in the PGA Championship.
That doesn't mean second-round co-leaders Robert Streb and Jimmy Walker aren't going to hold on to their position on Saturday and sleep on the lead going into the final round, but there is no reason for either player to feel comfortable.
That's because Jason Day and Jordan Spieth are charging. Streb and Walker both have scores of nine-under par as they prepare to tee off Saturday afternoon at Baltusrol in Springfield, New Jersey, and both have played razor-sharp golf through the first two rounds.
Streb fired a spectacular 63 in the second round, while Walker followed up on his opening round of 65 with an impressive 66 in the second.
But as those two players look behind them, the top-ranked player in the world is mounting a major charge. Day shot a 65 in the second round and is just two strokes behind the leaders. Spieth is six strokes behind Streb and Walker, but his second-round 67 indicates that he is starting to get the feel of the course and may find a way to climb into contention.
In addition to Day and Spieth, British Open champion Henrik Stenson, Martin Kaymer, Patrick Reed, Rickie Fowler, Hideki Matsuyama, Brooks Koepka, Zach Johnson and Adam Scott are all in position to make a run at the leaders in Saturday's moving-day round.
However, those looking for pre-tournament favorites Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy to get involved in the PGA Championship chase this weekend will be sorely disappointed. Both players failed to make the cut, and while Johnson simply played poorly over the first two rounds, McIlroy blew his opportunity to compete in the final 36 holes by bogeying the final hole when a birdie would have allowed him to stick around.
In addition to those big names above, relatively unknown Argentinian golfer Emiliano Grillo is tied with Day at seven-under.
Grillo knows he has yet to establish himself as a contender, but he likes the position he is in. "I've never been in this situation, and I'm not afraid of it," the 23-year-old told Kyle Porter of CBS Sports. "I'm going to go out and enjoy it."
Day appeared to be a non-factor in the tournament after he recorded a double bogey on the seventh hole that dropped him back to even par. However, he found his game after that as he reeled off seven birdies over the next eight holes.
“Just kept on setting myself up for opportunities," the Australian explained to Ben Everil of PGATour.com. "Even when I was kind of out of position, either in a fairway bunker or just in the rough, I had perfect angles. So that was quite nice."
The conditions at Baltusrol allowed Day to feel comfortable throughout most of the round.
“It was pretty receptive out there today," he continued. "I think if you could be a little bit aggressive, but also play it safe on some of the holes that you needed to. If you had the putter rolling you could get a score going."
Reed is seeking his first major championship, and he improved his level of play by shooting a 65 in the second round after shooting a 70 in the first round.
The 25-year-old has been playing good golf this season, as his nine top-10 finishes attest to, but he has yet to win a tournament. He is in search of his first tour victory since January 2015 and the first major championship of his career.
“The difference between a top-10 and a win out on tour is, you hit fairways, you hit greens and those 50-50 putts, you’re always on the right side of them,” Reed told Helen Ross of PGATour.com. “I think yesterday I was definitely on the right side of the 50-50 putts and today I probably broke even."
Streb and Walker are at the top of the leaderboard at the midway point, but both know the players chasing them are dangerous and fully capable of vaulting past them.