Skip to main content

My Top 40 Player of the Year Predictions for 2018

We are just about a week away from the beginning of the 2018 season.

With 34 tournaments on the schedule (including the UL International Crown), this year promises to to be one of the most exciting ever.

With the LPGA getting more and more talented each and every year, it is very difficult to narrow this down to just 40 players.

I  am going strictly by where I think they will finish on the 2018 money list.

Here are my top 40 picks for the 2018 season: (last year's actual money list finish is in parenthesis)

1- Lexi Thompson (3) - After last year's controversial ending to the ANA Inspiration, I am going to assume she will be much more careful in placing her ball. I am also thinking she will drop a few more key putts this year. She was oh so close to sweeping all the major awards last year. Look for her to be the 2018 Player of the Year, and finish the year in the #1 spot on the Rolex World Rankings.

Image result for Lexi Thompson
Look for less controversy and more putts to fall for Lexi Thompson this year.

2- Sung Hyun Park (1) - Look for another terrific year from this young lady. I expect multiple wins, but a #2 finish.

3- So Yeon Ryu (2) - She will win at least once in 2018, but will have a very hard time keeping up with the numbers 1 and 2 above.

Image result for so yeon ryu
Look for another solid season from So Yeon Ryu.

4- Brooke Henderson (6) - Many thought Brooke was a bit off last year, but she still managed a victory and a 6th place finish on the year end money list. Look for her to continue to win and threaten a top 3 finish.

5- Ariya Jutanugarn (5) - Ariya might be the toughest player on the LPGA to predict. She's capable of missing ten straight cuts and then winning again. Which half of her will turn up more frequently in 2018 is impossible to predict. So I will just place her where she finished last year.

6- Shanshan Feng (4) - Shanshan will start the year as the #1 player in the world. She will not finish there in spite of another solid season.

7- Lydia Ko (13) - I just refuse to believe that she can go another season without a victory. If she does, that will be a story all of its own.

8- Anna Nordqvist (8) - Just plug her in here in this spot every year and you can never go wrong.

9- In-Gee Chun (11) - Look for her to turn one of those many top five finishes into a victory this year.

10- Michelle Wie (19) - It was a big comeback year for Michelle in 2017. If she is healthy this coming season, look for a return to the top ten.

Image result for michelle wie
If healthy, look for a return to the top ten for Michelle Wie in 2018.

11- Cristie Kerr (7) - Cristie had one of the finest years of her career in 2017. A year that included two victories. She is just 5 points short of gaining Hall of Fame membership. That should keep the fires burning.

12- Inbee Park (25) - Where she will finish this year is going to depend on how many tournaments she will play. If she gets 20 starts, she could finish higher than this.

13- Stacy Lewis (15) - I believe Stacy will still play well enough to sneak in another win this year. I believe she will also keep the money this time.

14- Minjee Lee (16) - I can't help but feel that she still hasn't shown us her best. When she out!

15- Jin Young Ko (rookie) - The favorite to win this year's Louise Suggs Rookie of the Year Award. I don't see her having quite the rookie year that Sung Hyun Park had last year, but a solid season is a sure thing.

16- Angel Yin (44) - She won on the LET late last year. Look for her to win on the LPGA this year.

17- Sei Young Kim (10) - A very solid player, but I see her falling back some this season.

18- Jessica Korda (26) - If healthy this season, look for a bounce back year.

19- Nelly Korda - (47) - Closing the gap on older sister Jessica.

Image result for Nelly korda
Can Nelly Korda finish higher than sister Jessica on the 2018 money list?

20- Mirim Lee (20) - Look for her to finish right about where she finished last season.

21- Amy Yang (18) - I always seem to pick her too high. So I will drop her a bit this season.

22- Moriya Jutanugarn (9) - She is still looking for that elusive first victory. She led the tour in top twenty-five finishes in 2017. I don't expect her to do that again this year.

23- Danielle Kang (17) - She made a good chunk of her money when she won the KMPG Women's PGA Championship in 2017. She will have to win again in 2018 to finish that high on the money list again.

24- In-Kyung Kim (12) - She won three times in 2017, and still only managed to finish #12 on the year's money list. It is hard to pick her higher on this list when she sits out 50% of the tournaments.

25- Mi Hyang Lee (22) - Expect a slight drop off in 2018. But another solid season.

26- Marina Alex (27) - She gets better every year. No reason to believe she will not continue to improve.

27- Chella Choi (28) - Chella finishes about here every year. This year will be no different.

28- Georgia Hall (rookie) - I believe she will be one of the best players to come from the LET in years. She will have a solid season. Only question is whether or not she can challenge Jin Young Ko for rookie honors.

Image result for Georgia Hall
Can Georgia Hall challenge for the Louise Suggs Rookie of the Year honors?

29- Mi Jung Hur (14) - M.J. had a career year in 2017. I look for her to drop back some in 2018.

30- Carlota Ciganda (24) - She fell back 10 spots in 2017. I look for her to drop 6 more this year.

31- Brittany Altomare (30) - Surprised us all in 2017 with a very solid season. Look for more of the same this year as she tries to continue to pile up some Solheim Cup points.

32- Brittany Lincicome (32) - Still capable of winning, but doesn't contend enough anymore for me to put her higher.

33- Charley Hull (46) - After finishing #15 in 2016, she fell back sharply last season. I believe she will rebound a bit this year.

34- Lizette Salas (21) - Had a very solid second half of the season in 2017. Putting together two good halves has always been her problem.

35- Megan Khang (43) - Played up to our expectations the second half of last season. Look for more improvement this season.

36- Suzann Pettersen (37) - If she is healthy, she can finish much higher than this.

37- Jenny Shin (36) - Fell back quite a few places in 2017. I expect her to play about the same this year.

38- Madelene Sagstrom (49) - Madelene had a very solid rookie season that got stronger as the year went by. Look for continued improvement this year.

39- Austin Ernst (33) - Austin is a solid player, but I don't see a big upside here. Look for her to play well enough to solidify a 2019 Solheim Cup position.

40- Jodi Ewart Shadoff (31) - Makes a high percentage of cuts, but doesn't contend enough for me to put her higher than this on my list.

Player most likely to make me look foolish for leaving her off this list: Nasa Hataoka.

Player I left off because she is expecting a child in 2018 and will probably not play enough: Gerina Piller.

This Week's Trivia Question:

Only two players did not miss a cut or withdraw from a tournament in 2017. Can you name them?

For the the answer to this week's trivia question press here.

   (Currently 1,612 followers)


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 …