Jasen Vinlove – USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Zach Johnson.
There’s a trend taking place on the PGA Tour, one that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise.
Each of the last three winners had been building up to his victory, as if the writing was scribbled all over the proverbial wall beforehand.
But it doesn’t always work that way.
More often than you might think, victories are hardly predictable. Maybe a player arrives at a certain course with good vibes. Maybe something clicks with his swing or short game during a Tuesday practice session.
The past three, though, if we were paying attention, could’ve been foreseen. Here are those winners, with their previous five results, in descending order from most recent:
- Aaron Wise: 2-MC-32-41-68
- Webb Simpson: 21-5-20-29-8
- Jason Day: 20-32-26-2-1
That doesn’t even include Patrick Reed, who had similar strengthening performances before claiming a green jacket at the Masters.
If this current trend continues, it might converge at the intersection of Colonial Country Club, site of this week’s Fort Worth Invitational, which I’ve always thought was one of the easier events on the PGA Tour schedule to prognosticate. Why? A few reasons:
- Colonial is a classic fairways-and-greens type of track. At 7,209 yards, this is a track that depends on precision and accuracy more than power and distance. All those players in the bottom half of the current driving distance ranking will be licking their chops at the prospect of having a puncher’s chance this week.
- As an invitational, there are only 120 players in this week’s field, which might not sound like much of a difference, but even blindly picking a winner out of a hat offers a 0.83% chance, as opposed to tourneys with bigger fields of 144 (0.69%) or 156 (0.64%).
Simpson and Wise should be popular selections to back their recent titles, but I’ve identified six other players who are both trending in the right direction and should have the right game to succeed at Hogan’s Alley this week.