December 22 2013
With the PGA TOUR set to resume its 2013-14 season the first week of January, PGATOUR.COM is previewing the top 30 players to watch heading into the new year. We'll count down one a day in December until we unveil our No. 1 player to watch on Dec. 30, the Monday of the Hyundai Tournament of Champions.
Check out this preview of No. 9 Keegan Bradley and join the discussion below on how you think he'll perform in 2014. Click here for more on the top 30 players to watch in 2014.
NO. 9 PLAYER TO WATCH: KEEGAN BRADLEY
2014 OUTLOOK: Keegan Bradley is one of the TOUR's fiercest competitors. So finding a way to turn those near-misses of 2013 into victories in 2014 will undoubtedly be an area on which the affable New Englander will be focused. That, and making his second straight Ryder Cup team. Bradley ended last season with seven top-10s, including two runners-up and one third place. He can certainly ride the wave -- witness that 60 he shot in the first round of the HP Byron Nelson Championship on the way to a second-place finish -- and is nothing if not a birdie machine, ranking 11th on TOUR. But he struggled on the weekend last year, ranking 140th in round three scoring average and 70th on the final day. That's a big contrast when compared with a scoring average before the cut of third. -- Helen Ross
THUS FAR THIS SEASON: Bradley played in two events during the fall portion of the PGA TOUR's 2013-14 wrap-around season. He owned a four-stroke lead through 36 holes at the CIMB Classic before finishing 10th and tied for 11th the following week at the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions.
Can't endorse him strongly enough. He's off to a Hall of Fame-bound start in only three seasons. Plays more than others in his tier and continues to improve. A top-five fantasy investment for the foreseeable future. -- Rob Bolton
|ON THE MARK
Keegan is as emotional a player as any on the PGA TOUR, but he uses this to his best advantage. When Keegan gets in the mood he can hit shots and make putts with the best of them. He can also crank the ball off the tee which is a super advantage that he puts to good use. If there is a weakness in his game I would have to say it is the indecision that sometimes causes his pre-shot routine to run long. On the flip-side of that statement, though, is the fact that Bradley will not hit a shot until he is completely committed and that is a real positive. -- Mark Immelman
I find it curious Keegan did not win in 2013 and I attribute it more to bad luck than any deficiencies in skill level. He is the nervous type on the golf course, always pacing and moving. Bradley can hit the ball really high, enabling him to attack tight hole locations that are inaccessible to other players. I think he is due to have a great week in front of his New England fans at TPC River Highlands. -- Fred Albers
|INSIDE THE NUMBERS
One of the best drivers on TOUR, Bradley’s wedge play has drastically improved. He’s gone from 168th in sand save percentage (39.31 percent) in 2011 to 36th (56.25 percent) in 2013. His scrambling rate has risen nearly 5 percent since he arrived on TOUR in 2011 and ranked 125th. In 2013, Bradley scrambled at a rate of 60.88 to rank 32nd. -- Bill Cooney