Thursday, December 27, 2007

Top 50 Players of the Sorenstam Era

My ultimate goal in ranking past LPGA seasons is to develop a list of the all-time best players. Since I still have a ways to go on covering all of the past seasons, I thought it would be fun to pause here and generate a list of the best players from the recent past. There shouldn’t be any disagreement with dubbing the last 14 years as “the Annika Sorenstam Era”.

I took each of my Top 30 rankings from 1994 through 2007 and awarded points for where each player ranked. First place is worth 100 points, second is worth 90, third 80…on down to one point for 30th place. There are some players listed you might feel belong a little higher on the list – they are either young players who only have a couple of outstanding seasons under their belts, or they are players whose careers started several years prior to 1994. Don’t worry – my All-Time list will give the latter their just due, and the former will climb the list as they accumulate more good seasons.

The Top 50 Players of the Sorenstam Era are:

1. Annika Sorenstam
2. Karrie Webb
3. Juli Inkster
4. Se Ri Pak
5. Meg Mallon
6. Laura Davies
7. Mi Hyun Kim
8. Dottie Pepper
9. Rosie Jones
10. Lorena Ochoa
11. Cristie Kerr
12. Lorie Kane
13. Kelly Robbins
14. Liselotte Neumann
15. Hee-Won Han
16. Beth Daniel
17. Grace Park
18. Pat Hurst
19. Paula Creamer
20. Donna Andrews
21. Jeong Jang
22. Betsy King
23. Sherri Steinhauer
24. Michelle McGann
25. Catriona Matthew
26. Michele Redman
27. Tammie Green
28. Rachel Hetherington
29. Patty Sheehan
30. Brandie Burton
31. Laura Diaz
32. Val Skinner
33. Suzann Pettersen
34. Natalie Gulbis
35. Candie Kung
36. Seon Hwa Lee
37. Christa Johnson
38. Nancy Lopez
39. Helen Alfredsson
40. Carin Koch
41. Jane Geddes
42. Morgan Pressel
43. Janice Moodie
44. Maria Hjorth
45. Stacy Prammanasudh
46. Sophie Gustafson
47. Pat Bradley
48. Michelle Wie
49. Emilee Klein
50. Karen Stupples

A few notes about the list – I believe Ochoa should be ranked higher but considering she’s only played five of the 14 seasons covered, #10 is pretty amazing. Another POY in 2008 could move her as high as #6. Paula Creamer at #19 after only three years is equally amazing. Se Ri Pak is behind Inkster for similar reasons – Pak has played 10 seasons while Juli played all 14. Note that the top four are all Hall-of-Famers and the next two (Mallon and Davies) are veterans who are very close to qualifying with HOF points. Not all positions are separated equally – Sorenstam is 346 points ahead of Webb, and 566 ahead of Inkster. The distance between #1 and #3 is larger than the distance between #3 and #50.

5 comments:

Bill Roberts said...

Hi HD
Good list of the Annika era.
Writer Brent Kelley from About.com came out with his list of top 50 women golfers of all time. Not bad except he missed amateur golfer Marlene Stewart Streit.
Its real quiet on the golf scene this week, except the ADT Skills Challenge on NBC, my girl Natalie Gulbis came out on top with partner John Elway, it should be good watching.

Galley said...

Nice to see my girl Dottie so high on the list.

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L7 said...

Nice to see my girl Dottie so high on the list.
Thanks for post..
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