Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Reviewing The Preview – My Pre-Season Predictions

The Constructivist has been running a great series of mid-season updates at Mostly Harmless. One of them was a review of his pre-season predictions. While I was planning on waiting until the end of 2008 to look back at my picks (I’ll still probably do that), it sounded like a good idea to check things out now. To make it interesting, for each player listed I’ll judge how accurate I was by labeling each as “Nailed It”, “Pretty Close”, “Good”, “Not Too Good”, or “Blew It”.

1. Lorena Ochoa – Nailed It
2. Paula Creamer – Nailed It
3. Annika Sorenstam – Nailed It
4. Suzann Pettersen – Pretty Close

5. Jee Young Lee – Blew It
6. Seon Hwa Lee – Nailed It
7. Jeong Jang – Nailed It
8. Mi Hyun Kim – Blew It
9. Se Ri Pak – Blew It
10. Stacy Prammanasudh – Good
11. Morgan Pressel – Blew It
12. Brittany Lincicome – Blew It
13. Natalie Gulbis – Blew It
14. Angela Stanford – Not Too Good
15. Cristie Kerr – Nailed It
16. Angela Park – Not Too Good
17. Hee-Won Han – Pretty Close
18. Nicole Castrale – Good
19. Shi Hyun Ahn – Blew It
20. Christina Kim – Pretty Close
21. Catriona Matthew – Blew It
22. Karrie Webb – Not Too Good
23. Eun-Hee Ji – Pretty Close
24. Sophie Gustafson – Good
25. Laura Davies – Blew It
26. Ai Miyazato – Good
27. Juli Inkster – Not Too Good
28. Momoko Ueda – Good
29. In-Kyung Kim – Good
30. Maria Hjorth – Good

I’ll start with the bad ones. Jee Young Lee, Morgan Pressel and Mi Hyun Kim are about to fall out of the Top 30. Se Ri Pak, Brittany Lincicome, Catriona Matthew and Laura Davies are long gone. Natalie Gulbis and Shi Hyun Ahn tumbled out but are showing signs of recovery. Angelas Park and Stanford haven’t fallen as far but certainly haven’t had Top 20 seasons while Juli Inkster hasn’t been able to stay on the charts. I labeled Karrie Webb as “Not Too Good” because she’s played much better than #22.

Prammanasudh, Castrale, Gustafson, Miyazato and the last three are listed as “Good” because they are currently within 10-15 spots of where I predicted. I called Eun-Hee Ji “Pretty Close” because I consider putting her in the pre-season Top 30 at all and getting a #11 ranking is an accomplishment even though she’s outperformed my prediction by about the same amount as Webb. The “Nailed It” and other “Pretty Close” ones speak for themselves.

I also mentioned six other players in that post who might make my Top 30 and at the moment Jane Park and Laura Diaz are the two of those who have stepped up. Needless to say, I missed out on Yani Tseng, Inbee Park, Na Yeon Choi, Song-Hee Kim, Karen Stupples and Ji Young Oh. Park and Stupples (and to a lesser extent, Tseng) were the only ones of those that I seriously considered in the pre-season.

Considering my week-to-week predictions of late, I’m rather pleased with the way these have panned out. Of course a lot can change before Thanksgiving, especially for those players in the teens and twenties but my first attempt at predicting an LPGA season is shaping up pretty well.


Doug Thomson said...

Hi Ken, I really enjoy your blog but I'm puzzled on one point. Angela Park is currently 12th on the money list and has five top-tens this year, but you say she isn't having a Top-20 season. What am I missing here? Granted, she has rallied lately but still her overall season looks pretty good to me. I think your prediction was pretty darn close on Angela! Thanks Ken.. Doug

Hound Dog said...

Good point, Doug. I was comparing my pre-season picks with my current Top 30 list, which came out two tournaments ago. Angela was just outside the Top 30 then so that's why I called her prediction "Not Too Good". Her second-place finish at Evian really jacked up her money list standing. If I were to rank them right now, Angela would be at 19 or 20 (three missed cuts are dragging her down a bit). So I stand corrected on the Top-20 season statement - for the time being.