Stock Watch: Perez up as season winds down

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Each week on GolfChannel.com, we’ll examine which players’ stocks and trends are rising and falling in the world of golf.

RISING

Pat Perez (+6%): Only eight months removed from major shoulder surgery, he won for the first time since 2009. If only the Tour still handed out a Comeback Player of the Year award.

Finales (+5%): Sadly, it’s the last week of the year with a full slate of events, as the PGA, European and LPGA tours all wrap up play (though the European circuit resumes, gulp, Dec. 1).

Alex Noren (+4%): Skepticism remains, because he’s the only player in the top 30 who does not compete primarily in the States. But this is inarguable: He has won 36 percent (4 of 11) of his starts since July.

Bernhard Langer (+3%): Even while playing against the hungry newbies, the 59-year-old has topped almost every statistical category for the past three years, including the most important ones – earnings and Charles Schwab titles. He’s a treasure.

Zurich (+2%): A low-level Tour event in a sleepy late-spring spot changed its format, announced a few big-name teams and now is creating headlines six months in advance. Jay Monahan’s tenure is off to a promising start. 

FALLING

DJ’s music career (-0.5%): After his “music video” received must-watch status on every golf website, maybe the sport shouldn’t have an offseason, after all.

Gary Woodland (-1%): Watch him play, and you’d never guess that he has only two Tour titles. And yet here we are, after another missed opportunity in Mexico.

Jeunghun Wang (-3%): The 54-hole leader in South Africa, he was chased down – and then lapped – by Noren, limping home with a Sunday 75.

Hunter Mahan (-5%): His last 11 starts: 10 missed cuts and a tie for 70th. He is now down to No. 360 in the world – and to his last exempt year on Tour. 

Rule 18-2 (-7%): Better known now as the “God-forsaken” Dustin Johnson rule, Mike Davis admitted that it’s on the USGA chopping block. It still might be too little, too late for the beleaguered blue blazers.