Power Rankings: Wyndham Championshiptext sizeAugust 12, 2013
By Rob Bolton, PGATOUR.COM Fantasy Columnist
This is it! The Wyndham Championship represents the conclusion of the PGA TOUR Season that leads into the FedExCup Playoffs.
For many of the 156 in the field at Sedgefield Country Club this week, the survive-and-advance philosophy begins now. Only the top 125 in the FedExCup standings will qualify for next week's Barclays. Those failing to qualify but finishing inside the top 125 on the money list will also earn fully exempt status for 2013-14.
Although it's a par 70, Sedgefield is a race track. In each of its five years as host, it's ranked as one of the top-two easiest par 70s on the schedule. Last year's scoring average of 69.373 was its highest since it renewed its position on the PGA TOUR in 2008. That was expected since old Bentgrass greens were replaced with Champion Bermuda only three months prior.
Last year's field hit 67.6 percent of the greens in regulation. It was the first time that the clip didn't finish north of 71 percent. Par-4 and par-5 scoring averages checked in at 4.04 and 4.51, respectively, both tournament highs at Sedgefield. Proximity to the hole averaged 34-feet, 6-inches, longest of all five editions, and proximity to the hole from the rough was a TOUR-high 52-feet, 1-inch. For those that think that hitting fairways is largely irrelevant during shootouts, that latter measurement may force some to pause in club selection off the tee.
Sedgefield's 6,500-square-foot greens are likely to remain receptive again this week as a reasonable chance for rain exists every day. The forecast calls for seasonably cool conditions, perhaps barely reaching the upper 70s. Wind is unlikely to be a factor.
NOTE: For similar characteristics among all winners of the Wyndham Championship at Sedgefield, please look for "Stats Suggest" in The TOUR Report on Wednesday.
Power Rankings: Wyndham Championship Rank Player Comment Zach JOHNSON First appearance since a share of 26th place in 2008. A T8 at last week's PGA Championship was his fourth consecutive top 10; five on the season. Shaved 0.85 strokes off his adjusted scoring average during the streak; now ranks 47th. Webb SIMPSON The 2011 champ preceded his title with a T8 in 2010 and chased it with a T22 last year. Fresh off a T25 at Oak Hill where he spun a second-round 64, good for a share of the course record at the time. Ranks 16th in adjusted scoring. Brandt SNEDEKER Since winning the RBC Canadian Open, he's carded eight straight rounds of par or worse, but he's 4-for-5 at Sedgefield with a T5 in 2009 and a T8 in 2010. Currently 10th in strokes gained-putting and ninth in adjusted scoring. Bill HAAS Answered a career-best T7 at Firestone with a T25 at Oak Hill. Continues to lead the TOUR with nine top 10s. He's 3-for-5 at Sedgefield with a T10 in 2009 and a T7 in 2012. Eleventh in GIR, 18th in adjusted scoring and T3 in par-4 scoring. Sergio GARCIA His title here last year sparked a 23-for-24 run (WD, Bay Hill) that includes another win and nine other top 10s worldwide. Placed fourth in his only other appearance at Sedgefield in 2009. Leads the PGA TOUR in strokes gained-putting. Tim CLARK Quintessential horse for a course. Tied for sixth at Sedgefield in 2008 and was runner-up last year. Under par in all eight rounds, averaging 66.125. Second on TOUR in fairways hit, first in proximity to the hole from the rough. Hideki MATSUYAMA Since an incredible beginning to his professional career on the Japan Golf Tour, he's added four top 25s in as many starts. The slate includes a T6 at Muirfield and a T19 at Oak Hill. Now 29th in the Official World Golf Ranking. Roberto CASTRO Co-led PGA TOUR non-winners at the PGA Championship with a T12 (Marc Warren). It was Castro's third top 15 in his last five starts. Ranks 35th in greens in regulation, 25th in scrambling a T31 in par-4 scoring average. Patrick REED Second appearance (T66, 2011). Top 10s in his last two starts this season (T7, Deere; T9, Canadian) and under par in eight consecutive rounds. Currently 45th in strokes gained-putting, 37th in par breakers and 39th in scrambling. Chez REAVIE Survived nine consecutive cuts, four of which going for a top 25. Also 3-for-3 at Sedgefield with a T10 in 2009 and a T9 in 2011. Sits fifth on TOUR in fairways hit, 22nd in greens in regulation, third in proximity and T8 in par-4 scoring. David TOMS On the heels of a T16 in Reno, posted a season-best solo seventh at the PGA Championship where he was under par in each of the last three rounds. Four cuts made in five starts at Sedgefield, including a solo second in 2010. Rory SABBATINI Had the week off following a T7 in Reno, tied for his season-best finish. Top 20s in his last three starts and four of his last five. Missed the cut in his debut at Sedgefield a year ago. Ranks 26th in greens hit and fifth in par breakers. John ROLLINS Picked up his 11th top 25 of the season with a T20 in Reno where he's enjoyed success in the past. Tied for third at Sedgefield in 2010 and shared 25th place in 2011. Ranks 17th in greens in regulation and T18 in par-4 scoring. Chris KIRK Ranks 31st in FedExCup points, 11th-highest among 2013 non-winners. Three top 10s and another six top 25s. Tied for 22nd at Sedgefield last year. Ranks 24th in strokes gained-putting, T3 in par-4 scoring and first in scrambling. Jimmy WALKER In the midst of uncharacteristically poor form, having survived only one of his last five cuts. However, it went for a T2 at Greenbrier. Last year's T4 at Sedgefield is a personal-best in five appearances. Sits 34th in adjusted scoring.