Monday, July 09, 2007

Top 30 – July 2007

Only three events have been played since my last rankings but since two of them were majors, things have shuffled a bit over the last month. These rankings are primarily based on my statistical formula (which currently is 75% weighted on 2007 results, 25% on 2006) with some subjective adjustments. The player’s previous ranking is in parentheses.

#1 Lorena Ochoa (1)
According to my formula, in 2005 Annika Sorenstam was 30 points better than #2 Paula Creamer, and in 2004 she was 24 points better than Grace Park. Even without any major victories to pad her total (Annika won three majors in those two years), Lorena is currently 24 points ahead of #2. So think about that the next time somebody starts jibber-jabbering that the #1 player HAS to have won a major.

#2 Paula Creamer (2)
Paula and Peanut are virtually tied for this spot.

#3 Mi Hyun Kim (3)

#4 Cristie Kerr (9)
The Open victory puts Cristie right back to where she ranked at the start of 2007. You may have heard the story that she bought a new putter in Korea about six weeks ago and has been lighting it up ever since. The three cuts she’s missed this year is most likely going to cost her any chance of winning POY, but the #2 spot is within reach even if she doesn’t win again.

#5 Morgan Pressel (7)
Not all of this boost to #5 is because of the increased emphasis on 2007 – Morgan is finishing Top 20 most weeks with an occasional Top 10.

#6 Suzann Pettersen (10)
If she had finished Top 10 at the Open (like most of us expected) instead of missing the cut, she would rank #4 here. “If ifs and buts were candy and nuts…”

#7 Brittany Lincicome (13)
Same comment as Pressel, except Brittany has been even better than Morgan in recent weeks.

#8 Stacy Prammanasudh (8)
Stumbling. Since finishing tied for fourth at the Michelob, Stacy has collected two MCs and one DNS. She did T15 at the LPGA Championship, so I’m not overly concerned about her yet.

#9 Karrie Webb (4)
Webb, Sorenstam and Inkster are all sinking fast because 1) 2007 counts more now, and 2) they aren’t playing very well. All three were Top 5 players in 2006, but are barely Top 20 players (Juli’s not even that) based on this year’s performances.

#10 Annika Sorenstam (5)

#11 Jee Young Lee (14)
Keeps climbing mainly because of the increased weight on 2007 performance. This statement also applies in varying degrees to Pressel, Pettersen, Lincicome and Sarah Lee.

#12 Se Ri Pak (12)
I feel fairly certain that the newest member of the Hall Of Fame is going to win sometime this year, maybe as soon as this weekend.

#13 Nicole Castrale (11)
Missed the cut at Wegmans, but T10 at the LPGA Championship and a reasonable T35 at the Open.

#14 Ai Miyazato (15)
Missed the cut at the LPGA Championship, but T10 at the Open and T21 at Wegmans.

#15 Sarah Lee (22)
Despite missing the cut at the Open, Sarah keeps climbing (see JY Lee comment).

#16 Jeong Jang (21)
JJ’s found her game – five straight finishes in the Top 25 and two straight Top 10s. Watch out for her at St. Andrews.

#17 Juli Inkster (6)
See Webb comment (#9).

#18 Angela Park (30)
Pay no attention to those rookies who have popped up on the leaderboard in recent weeks – Angela Park will mathematically clinch the 2007 Rookie Of The Year award in early September.

#19 Shi Hyun Ahn (18)
Stuck in neutral after a great beginning, Ahn hasn’t finished better than T21 or worse than T39 in her last seven starts.

#20 Seon Hwa Lee (16)
If there’s a steadier player than the Stone Buddah, I haven’t seen her. I need to dig up the Standard Deviation stuff from my old Statistics classes to figure out if that’s actually a true statement.

#21 Young Kim (17)
Since her win at Corning, Young hasn’t finished better than T25.

#22 Angela Stanford (26)
Four Top 10s in her last seven events.

#23 Sherri Steinhauer (19)

#24 Hee-Won Han (20)
Unless we have a couple more first-time winners before then, Mom may still be in the Top 30 when she returns in October. While on the subject of mommies, I recently heard that Karen Stupples also delivered her first child (a son named Logan) back in April and returned to play in the Ladies English Open this past weekend. We should see her at Evian and St. Andrews.

#25 Pat Hurst (23)

#26 Laura Davies (28)

#27 Julieta Granada (24)
Her season was going straight down the crapper – three missed cuts in four events – until she T10 at the Open.

#28 Catriona Matthew (NR)
Top 20 finishes at the last two majors bump Catriona into my rankings for the first time.

#29 Michelle Wie (25)
Almost out of here, but not quite. If you wanted to argue that Gulbis or Gustafson or Na On Min should be here instead, I wouldn’t totally disagree with you.

#30 Meaghan Francella (29)
I ultimately left her in because of her victory in Mexico, but she’s not playing too bad.

Dropped out: Natalie Gulbis (27).

1 comment:

The Constructivist said...

Watch out for injuries to take their toll on Francella (she had to take a cortisone shot before the first round of the Open), Sarah Lee (back, like Gulbis), and Prammanasudh (thumb) in coming weeks.