Skip to main content

Surprises & Disappointments 2014 - Part 2

Back in April I wrote who I thought were the biggest  surprises & disappointments of the year. The LPGA had only played 7 tournaments at that point. So much has changed since then. The LPGA has now played 16 of its 32 tournaments, and I think it is time to take another look.

Biggest Surprises:

1- Michelle Wie - She started to play better the second half of last season, but not too many people saw this coming. With the possible exception of Stacy Lewis, Wie has become the most consistent player on the LPGA tour. Michelle Wie started the year as the #61 ranked player in the world, and is now #6. She finished last season #41 on the money list, and she is #2 this year. She has teed it up 14 times this year and has had 2 wins (one a major championship), 6 top 5's, 10 top tens, and 13 top 20's. Her worst finish this year is a tie for 23rd place.

2- Anna Nordqvist - Anna came onto the LPGA in 2010 and won twice that year, with one of those wins being a major championship. She did not win again the next 3 years. Coming into the 2014 season we didn't have very high expectations. Anna has turned it all around this year winning twice, and her consistency has her currently #5 on this year's money list.

3- Karrie Webb - After a huge comeback year in 2012 when she won twice, Karrie slipped just a bit last year. Taking into account that she will be turning 40 this year, there was every reason to think that her numbers would decline some more. Well, that certainly hasn't happened! Karrie has won twice already this season. Currently #7 on this year's money list, this Hall of Famer is not slowing down.

4- Lydia Ko - Sure I know she had already won a couple of LPGA tournaments before this year. I also know that everyone expected her to have a big rookie season this year. So why is she a surprise? She is a surprise because with all the hype she still had to go out and do it. And do it she has. She has gotten that first win as an LPGA member under her belt, along with 6 top 5 finishes, and seven top tens. Currently #3 on this year's money list, she is having a rookie season for the ages.

5- Jennie Shin - Talk about flying under the radar, most fans still don't know who she is. Although Jennie is still looking for that first victory, she has a top 5, 4 top tens, and 8 top 20 finishes this year. Her improvement has been dramatic. Jennie finished #45 on the money list in 2013, and is currently #16. Look for that first victory to come along soon.

6- Gerina Piller - Somewhat of a late bloomer at 29 years old, Gerina just keeps getting better every year. A real bomber, she is #1 in driving distance this year. Gerina finished #68 on the money list in 2011, #48 in 2012, #26 in 2013, and is currently #23 this year. I look for that trend to continue.

Honorable mentions: Chella Choi, Azahara Munoz.

Biggest Disappointments:

1- Ai Miyazato - There are players having worse seasons than Ai, but none of them are as disappointing based on our expectations. Maybe like Yani Tseng, I will have to lower my expectations next year, but for now I am still waiting for her to turn it around. The numbers don't seem to make sense. She has missed 3 straight cuts. She has gone 28 tournaments without a top ten. Worse yet, 17 tournaments without a top 20.
This former #1 player has now dropped to #53 in the world. Her decline started last season when she dropped to #26 on the money list, this year she is currently #85.

2- Mika Miyazato - Things are not good if your name is Miyazato this year. Mika has actually been worse than Ai. She has missed the cut in 4 of her last 7 starts. She has not finished in the top twenty all year. In 2012 Mika finished #11 on the money list, this year she is #88.

3- I.K. Kim - In some ways this is more puzzling then the top two. I.K. came into this season as one of the best players in the world, and we haven't seen anything resembling that player. She has one 13th place finish this year, but other than that she has finished 30th or worse in all the others. I.K. finished #7 on last year's money list. You can currently find her residing at the #60 spot.

4- Beatriz Recari - What is going on here? Beatriz won twice last year and finished #8 on the money list. This year she has missed 6 cuts, doesn't have a top 20 finish, and is currently #98 on the money list.

5- Moriya Jutanugarn - Last year's rookie the year, has not shown up at all this year. Moriya has played in all 16 events this year and her best finish is 27th. Currently #75 on the money list, it's time to wake up or she might be fighting to get into events next year.

6- Vicky Hurst - I only rank her this low because my expectations weren't as high as the players above her, but Vicky might be having the worst season of any LPGA player. She has only made 1 cut this year in 12 attempts and ranks #157 on the money list. Once such a promising young player, she will now have a hard time retaining her playing card.

7- Sun Young Yoo - With just 1 top 20 finish in 13 starts she has not contended this year. Just 2 years ago she finished 17th on the money list. This year she currently #57.

Dishonorable mentions: Ihlee Lee, Carlotta Ciganda, Irene Coe.

Other Tidbits:
Lexi Thompson missed the cut this past week for only the 2nd time in her last 21 starts.

The LPGA has now hit the halfway point of the season with only 5 players that played all 16 tournaments.
They are: Hee Young Park, Chella Choi, Mo Martin, Moriya Jutanugarn, and Caroline Masson.

Chella Choi and Na Yeon Choi have only 6 top tens between them, but have finished 11th to 20th sixteen times.

Rolex Rankings Movers of the Week:
Stacy Lewis remains #1, but now has a very large lead that would suggest she may be staying there for quite some time. Lydia Ko passes Inbee Park and moves up to the #2 spot.

Race to the CME Globe:  (1 million dollars)
Stacy Lewis has a huge lead with 3,524 points. She is followed by Michelle Wie with 2,588, and Lydia Ko with 1,928.

Who's Hot:
So Yeon Ryu has done everything but win. She has finished in the top ten in 5 of her last 6 starts.
Meena Lee has four consecutive top 15 finishes.

Who's Not:
Mindy Kim has missed the cut in her last 10 starts.


  1. It would be something to see Vicky Hurst have to go through Q School. It would be her first time, I'm pretty sure, since she got her card at 18 off the Symetra Tour when she finished as the top money winner in 2008 with 5 victories, I think, and set a record for the most money won in a season. Hard to figure out what has gone wrong with her game.

    1. Dave, my guess is she may not be 100% healthy.

  2. Perhaps Tony you should have listed the $ and not the # and at the halfway point of the season with the exception of Hurst your disappointments don't look so bad. Players have a life outside of golf and external factors have to come in to it. A good example is In-Bee Park the poor girl is trying to organise one of the biggest events of her life.. getting married so I can see why she is a little off at the moment.

    1. Thanks for the input Colin. I don't really consider Inbee a disappointment. There is no way she could have matched last year. I think she is playing pretty close to what I expected.

  3. Don't be freaked out if she has Asian mama problems now that her daddy has passed away.

    1. I'm talking about Vicky Hurst.

  4. Last year Nordqvist had a scoring average of 70.833. This year so far it is 70.700. Last year she had no wins and no missed cuts--this year she has two of each. I wonder if longer drives have led to greater variability in her results.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

LPGA Player Profile - Natalie Gulbis

With the LPGA taking a one week break before resuming its schedule in the state of Texas, I want to take this opportunity to do my fifth player profile.

The player I have chosen this time around, may very well be in the twilight of her career, but has been a crowd favorite for many years. I have chosen:


Born: 1/7/83 (34 years old)
Hometown: Sacramento Calif.
Resides: Lake, Las Vegas, Nev.
Rookie Year: 2002

Natalie has won once on the LPGA tour:

2007 Evian Masters

 Natalie has had many of her best finishes in Major Championships!

Best Finishes in Major Championships:

ANA Inspiration - Finished 3rd in 2006KPMG Women's PGA Championship - Finished 5th in 2005U.S. Women's Open - Finished 4th in 2005Ricoh British Open - Finished 9th in 2013The Evian Championship - Finished 52nd in 2013 (It was not a Major Championship when she won this event).

Career Stats:

318 career starts237 cuts made (74.5%)37 top tens (11.6%)Has $4,892,233 in career earnings through the 2016 season (57…

LPGA Player Profile: Belen Mozo

With the LPGA taking a one week break before resuming its schedule in the United States, I thought it would be a good time to do my third LPGA player profile.

The player I have chosen this time around, may not be a household name like the first two were, but I have received a number of requests to do this profile.

Belen Mozo

Pronounced: (bay-LEN moh-thoh) Born: 9/25/88 (28 years old) Hometown: Cadiz, Spain Resides: Cartagena, Colombia College: USC Rookie Year: 2011 2016 Earnings: $76,263 (104th)

Belen has not yet won on the LPGA tour: Here are her best finishes: Finished 5th at the 2016 LPGA Volvik ChampionshipFinished 4th at the 2014 Manulife Financial LPGA ClassicFinished 10th at the 2014 Airbus LPGA ClassicFinished 5th at the 2011 Walmart NW Arkansas Championship
Best Finishes in Major Championships: ANA Inspiration (formerly the Kraft Nabisco Championship) - Finished 41st in 2013KPMG Women's PGA Championship - Finished 58th in 2013U.S. Women's Open - Finished 55th in 2014Ricoh …

U.S. Women's Open Photo Gallery

Here are some photos that my wife and I have taken over the last few days at the U.S. Women's Open at Trump National Golf Club, in Bedminster, N.J.

Most Popular Photos of the Year - 2017

1/9/18 - Bonus pics added at bottom of this page!

As many of my readers know, my wife and I go to quite a few LPGA tournaments each year. Since 2010 we have gone to over 50 events, including two in Scotland (St. Andrews being our favorite), and the last 8 Canadian Opens.

I do all the writing on here (my wife who is a teacher, is my proofreader), while my wife Cindy does most of the picture taking. Neither of us are professional photographers, but once in a while we get lucky and capture a moment that is very popular with my viewers.

Below I have reposted the most popular photos of 2017. I based this on the number of website hits, and the number of comments each photo received. Some came as quite a surprise to me, as when they were taken I was not expecting such a reaction.


LPGA Player Profile: Sandra Gal (and much more)

Let me start off by giving a big congratulations to Brooke Henderson for winning the MCKAYSON New Zealand Women's Open. Brooke took the lead from Belen Mozo early in round four and never looked back. She shot a final round 3 under par 69 , to finish 271 (-17), which was 5 strokes better than runner-up Jing Yan.

For the 20 year old Henderson, who is in her second full year on tour, it was her fifth LPGA victory (which includes one Major Championship) and second this year.

With the LPGA having an unexpected week off (the Alisport LPGA tournament was cancelled) it gives some time to do another LPGA player profile.

The player I have chosen this week is Sandra Gal.

Born:  May 9, 1985
Hometown:  Cologne, Germany
Resides:  Orlando, Fla.
Rookie Year:  2008

Sandra has one victory on the LPGA Tour.

2011 Kia Classic

Best finishes in major championships:

ANA Inspiration - 15th in 2011KPMG Women's PGA Championship - 12th in 2015U.S. Women's Open - 3rd in 2012Ricoh Women's British Open …

What in the World Has Happened to Yani Tseng?

The 2013 LPGA season has brought us lots of surprises. We have had first time winners. We have had winners from 7 different countries. Five Major Championships were played for the first time, with one player (Inbee Park) winning 3 of them. We have even had 4 players win multiple championships this year. However the biggest surprise to date has to be the tumble taken by Yani Tseng.

Yani started the 2013 season ranked as the #1 player in the world. In fact, at one point during the 2011 season, the #2 ranked player in the world (Na Yeon Choi), was closer to the 180th Rolex ranked player than she was to Yani at #1. It seemed Yani would be number one forever.

Let us look at some of her accomplishments:

In 2008, at the age of 19, Yani won the LPGA Championship.
In 2009, Yani became the fastest player in LPGA history to reach $2 million in career earnings. She did it in only 32 events.
In 2010 Yani won 3 times, including 2 more championships.
In 2011 Yani won 7 times, including 2 more major…

Lexi Thompson Receives 4 stroke Penalty, Loses Championship by 1 Stroke in Playoff

Lexi Thompson was informed that she received a four stroke penalty as she walked off the 12th hole on Sunday at the ANA Inspiration.

An email was received by LPGA officials from a viewer about a possible rules infraction during the third round.

After deliberating for two hours, they informed her that she had violated rule 20.7c when she replaced her ball an inch away from its original position one foot from the hole.

She received four strokes in penalties. Two for the rules infraction, and two strokes for signing an incorrect scorecard.

"Oh my god," said Thompson, as she broke into tears.

LPGA official Sue Witter later said she was 100-percent sure it was not intentional. "It was a hard thing to do. To be honest it made me sick."

When TV viewers were informed of the infraction, Thompson had a 2 stroke lead. When the score was adjusted she was two strokes back.

With the crowd chanting Lexi, Lexi, Lexi during the remaining holes, she birdied the 13th & 15th hole …