Each week on GolfChannel.com, we’ll examine which players’ stocks and trends are rising and falling in the world of golf.
Nate Lashley (+9%): A few years ago, the PGA Tour abandoned the “These Guys are Good” slogan, which is a shame, because it still rings true today. All these players need is an opportunity. Take Lashley, a 36-year-old journeyman who entered the Rocket Mortgage as the third alternate and played the tournament of his life to earn his first title and bank a $1.3 million check.
Christiaan Bezuidenhout (+7%): His backstory is compelling enough, but this 24-year-old South African also has serious game. His runaway win at Valderrama was his fifth top-10 of the season, just his second full-time on the Euro Tour.
New blood (+6%): Doc Redman, the 2017 U.S. Amateur champion, just locked up special temporary membership on Tour with his solo second in Detroit, and 2018 winner Viktor Hovland (fresh off a T-13) likely isn’t far behind. Matthew Wolff and Collin Morikawa? They’re coming, too. It’s going to be a fun final month of the regular season.
Sung Hyun Park (+4%): A back-nine 31, including a closing birdie, was enough to steal the Arkansas Championship and return to No. 1 in the world. Stout.
Patrick Reed (+2%): Don’t look now, but P-Reed is finally showing signs of life. His top-5 last week was his first since the 2018 U.S. Open. There’s still plenty of time to mend relationships – and warrant a captain’s pick – before the Presidents Cup.
Jon Rahm (-1%): The Spaniard was gracious in defeat, but it was still a surprise to see him lay down in the final group, shooting over par on a day when he had nothing to lose and was facing an unproven frontrunner.
DJ (-2%): Dare we say he’s looked ordinary since his stumbling finish to the PGA. That’s three straight finishes of T-20 or worse, including his first missed cut last week in nearly a year. Not sky-is-falling stuff, of course, but decidedly un-DJ-like.
Michelle Wie (-3%): Shutting it down for the rest of the year was the only choice, given the perilous state of her career, but sadly this still feels like the beginning of the end.
Scoring frenzy (-4%): Four of the last five winners on Tour have been 17 under or deeper, and Gary Woodland (13 under) and Steve Stricker (19 under) just handled with ease what were supposed to be the toughest tests of the year. Expect the birdie barrage to continue the next few weeks – and at Royal Portrush, if the wind doesn’t blow.
Cam Champ (-5%): A back injury has slowed what seemed like a promising rookie season, but the weekend in Detroit (when he went from the final group to T-46) also exposed the serious holes in his game, from shoddy iron play to suspect work around the greens. Can we please hold off on that “game-changer” talk?