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Stat attack!: Quicken Loans National review

RSS

Justin Rose is second on the PGA Tour in bounce-back percentage, but his comeback victory at the Quicken Loans National was his biggest bounce back of the year – even though he only followed a bogey or worse with a birdie or better one time last week.

Rose opened with a 74 at Congressional – including a front-nine 40. It was the worst first-round score for a winner this year and just the seventh time since 2000 that a player opened with a 74 or worse in a PGA Tour event and went on to win.

 Score Player Tournament To par
 75 Mark Calcavecchia 2007 Tampa +4
 74 Justin Rose 2014 Quicken Loans +3
 74 Vijay Singh 2004 Houston +2
 74 Stuart Appleby 2005 T of C +1
 74 Phil Mickelson 2005 BellSouth +2
 74 Tiger Woods 2005 Masters +2
 74 Padraig Harrington 2008 British Open +4

After the 3-over start, Rose shot 65 Friday and followed with rounds of 71-70 on the weekend to finish tied with Shawn Stefani at 4-under 280. Rose won on the first playoff hole after Stefani hit his approach into a greenside pond. Interestingly, Stefani also opened with a 74 last week, and six of the seven players who were in the top five began their week with over-par rounds.

Comeback kings: Quicken Loans leaders after round one

 Finish Player First round Final score Pos. after day one
 1 Justin Rose 74/+3 280/-4 T-83
 2 Shawn Stefani 74/+3 280/-4 T-83
 T-3 Charley Hoffman 72/+1 281/-3 T-43
 T-3 Ben Martin 72/+1 281/-3 T-43
 T-5 Andres Romero 70/-1 282/-2 T-16
 T-5 Brendan Steele 74/+3 282/-2 T-83
 T-5 Brendon Todd 72/+1 282/-2 T-43

Rose (and Stefani) trailed first-round leader Greg Chalmers by eight strokes after he opened the week with a five-under 66. This was the fourth time in the last three years that the winning score in relation to par was worse than that put up by the first-round leader. Rose has been involved in two of those occassions, with his win at the 2013 U.S. Open also meeting this requirement.

PGA Tour events where the winner’s score was worse than the first-round leader’s score: 2012-2014

 Tournament First-round score Winner's score Champion
 2014 Quicken Loans -5 -4 Justin Rose
 2013 British Open -5 -3 Phil Mickelson
 2013 U.S. Open -3 +1 Justin Rose
 2012 U.S. Open -3 +1 Webb Simpson

This was Rose’s first win since the U.S. Open and it came on another major venue, Congressional, host of the 2011 national championship won by Rory McIlroy. Rose missed the cut at that Open (again opening with a 74), and if his victory Sunday was somewhat of a surprise it’s because he hadn’t played Congo since that missed cut. He skipped the National the last two years even though he won the tournament in 2010 when it was held at Aronimink GC in Pennsylvania. Rose is one of six players who have won in 2013-14 despite skipping the tournament the previous two years. He is also one of seven active players who have won the same current PGA Tour event (not a major or a WGC) on two different courses.

PGA Tour winners in 2014 who didn’t play that event the previous two years

 Player Tournament Last played
 Justin Rose Quicken Loans 2011
 Adam Scott Colonial 2011
 Webb Simpson Las Vegas 2010
 Harris English Mayakoba Never
 Chesson Hadley Puerto Rico Never
 Patrick Reed WGC-Cadillac Never

Active players who have won the same current PGA Tour event on two different courses*

 Player Tournament First course Second course
 Justin Rose Quicken Loans 2010 Aronimink 2014 Congressional
 Tiger Woods Tournament of Champions 1997 LaCosta 2000 Kapalua
 Vijay Singh Shell Houston Open 2002 TPC Woodlands 2004-05 Redstone
 Stuart Appleby Shell Houston Open 1999 TPC Woodlands 2006 Redstone
 Jim Furyk Canadian Open 2006 Hamilton 2007 Angus Glen
 Vijay Singh Barclays 93-95-06 Westchester 2008 Ridgewood
 Tiger Woods Tour Championship 1999 Champions 2007 East Lake

Rose becomes the second major champion from 2013 to win this season, following Adam Scott, who won the Crowne Plaza at Colonial.

How the 2013 major champions have fared in 2014

 Player Starts Cuts made Best Top 10s Points rank Money rank
 Adam
 Scott
10 10 Won Colonial 6 13 13

 Justin
 Rose

13 11 Won Quicken Loans 6 12 9
 Phil
 Mickelson
15 11 T-11 FedEx, Wells Fargo 0 89 88
 Jason
 Dufner
14 11 Second Colonial 4 44 42

In his last seven starts, the South African-born Englishman has made six cuts and finished no worse than T-14. He has moved from 75th on the FedEx Cup standings to 12th, and from 57th on the money list to ninth.

Justin Rose on the PGA Tour since the Masters

 Tournament Finish Scores Earnings
 Masters T-14 76-70-69-74—289 $148,500
 Zurich Classic T-8 71-67-69-68—275 197,200
 Wells Fargo 5 69-67-71-71—278 276,000
 Players T-4 67-71-71-69—278 440,000
 Memorial MC 73-72—145  
 U.S. Open T-12 72-69-70-72—283 156,679
 Quicken Loans Won 74-65-71-70—280 1,170,000

But why shouldn't Rose be playing his best golf of the season? It's his time of year. He might have started his hot streak a bit earlier in 2014, but late spring/early summer is when Rose blooms. He had two previous June victories, at the Memorial in 2010 and the Open in 2013. His win at the 2010 National came on July 4. He’s also come close to winning several other times in this portion of the calendar with a runner-up at the 2008 Memorial, and a third in Hartford in 2005, both of which he was leading after three rounds. Here’s how Rose has fared at the PGA Tour events that currently end in June. He was won 26.5 percent of his career earnings at these tournaments.

Justin Rose in the PGA Tour events that currently end in June

 Tournament Starts Top-10 Best Earnings
 Memorial 10 5 Won, 2010 $2,198,620
 St. Jude 0 0   0
 U.S. Open 9 3 Won, 2013 $2,023,054
 Travelers 8 3 Third, 2005 $788,902
 Quicken Loans 5 2 Won, 2010, 2014 $2,511,620
 Total 32 13 Four wins $7,522,196

There is no truth to the rumor that Rose is petitioning Augusta National to have them switch the Masters to the week before the U.S. Open. But we wouldn't blame him if he tried.