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Video And Poll: Who Is Your 2013 World Player Of The Year?

We discussed the player of the year on the Grey Goose 19th Hole and I was outvoted 2-1 with Mssrs. Fay and Feinstein picking Adam Scott on the strength of his great run in Australia. While I admire all things Australia, those wins weren't enough to catapult Scott above Phil Mickelson's win at The Open as the defining victory of the season. Throw in his Scottish Open win and near-miss at the U.S. Open, and Phil got my vote.

But what an incredible year it was to have four players with such stellar resumes. A case could be made for each, which brings me to the ultimate tiebreaker: who was the Champion Golfer of the Year (winner of The Open)?

Here's our discussion:

Cast your vote here:

Who is the 2013 world player of the year? free polls 

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Reader Comments (44)

Stenson is the choice. Euro and Fedex Cup champ.
Ball striking is the best on tour.
12.19.2013 | Unregistered Commenter3PuttAficionado
Remember the 16 rounds of the majors:
1 Adam Scttt 279, 295, 285, 275 - 1134
1 Jason Day 281, 283, 293, 277 - 1134
3 Henrik Stenson 288, 291, 284, 273 - 1136
4 Jason Dufner 289, 285, 292, 270 - 1146
4 Tiger Woods 283, 293, 286, 284 - 1146
6 Matt Kuchar 285, 292, 290, 280 - 1147
7 Brandt Snedeker 284, 290, 288, 289 - 1151
8 Phil Mickelson 297, 283, 281, 292 - 1153
9 Dustin Johnson 287, 297, 293, 277 - 1154
10 Sergio Garcia 285, 295, 291, 288 - 1159
11 Martin Kaymer 291, 299, 293, 283 - 1166
To me Stenson is out. He won just one full-field event the whole year. When it comes to Player of the Year I always dislike awarding someone for a short hot stretch. Stenson had his at the end of the year, Mickelson ran hot for two weeks in June. I guess some want to award Player of the Year only to someone who has one a major, which is perfectly fine. But at the end of the day it's just one out of 52 weeks, so Tiger Woods with 5 wins against great fields (2 WGCs, Players and Mr. Palmer's Tournament) would probably be the right choice. Plus in head-to-head-matchups he is 8-7 against Stenson and a whopping 9-4 against Mickelson. The only one who beat Woods constantly in 2013 is Adam Scott who is 7-5 against him. So I would be fine with Woods or Scott.

But let me drop a name noone is talking about. Since it is apparently okay to throw Scotts wins in Australia into the conversation, although they came against pushover fields, why is no one talking about Hideki Matsuyama as a WORLDWIDE Player of the Year? The guy won four tournaments this year in Japan and besides his first tournament in Hawaii finished no 2013 tournament in the US or Europe outside the Top 25, including two Top Ten finishes in Majors for the year!
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterRyan
Stenson has my vote based on the road traveled after crawling out of that pit he was in. Phil's Open win was a gem, it was a pleasure watching Scott don the green jacket and Tiger's 5-win season was impressive but not without debate. IIRC, those three didn't get beat playing for a home club championship.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterD. maculata
Duh, Inbee Park.
The UK double takes the prize for Phil.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
The Constructivist,

That is correct.

Regarding the men, I have a sneaking suspicion that if Phil or Adam had done what Tiger did this year (Two WGCs and the Players along with two other wins, the money title and the Vardon Trophy), everyone would be falling all over themselves to give POY to either of those guys.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterRES
Inbee, but of the poll....Stenson
12.20.2013 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
In my analysis I would award the POY based on the combination of personal and historic burden. In other words, had it been done before and if so by whom. Based on that premise Inbee Park would get my vote, Adam next then Phil. Inbee and Adam carried the pressure of their country's pride on top of the personal pressures. Tiger's year was great but historically he did not carry the pressure load that the others did. For commentors that pick Tiger reverse some of the comparisons. What if he had stopped the major drought at the Masters or won consecutive links tourneys culminating in a come from behind 66 at Muirfield... Then think about the heaps of praise and attention if he had won the first 3 majors. Another way to look at it- which year would Tiger choose of those 3 if he could? Or would he pick the year he had?
12.20.2013 | Unregistered Commentermunihack
"World POY"

In truth, how could it not be Inbee Park? 3 Majors says it all. the meat of the question; a really strong case could be made for any of the 4 men. The Majors have to carry the weight. I'd pick Adam Scott's run in AUS over Phil's Scottish Open...but only by a nose.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJS
Tiger had a great year. So did the 1954 Cleveland Indians: 114-43 (0.721) followed by 0-4 (0.000) in October.
Inbee Park, Phil, Adam, in that order.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
Isn't it harder to win your first major than your fifth? I give Adam the slight edge because of the way he won it, had to go extra holes. And backed it up with a near-historic finish in his homeland.

PS I wonder if Inbee got any serious consideration from SI?? She did get Golf Digest's World Player of the Year award, which has never gained much attention. Nice player just not exciting, at all.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMedia driven
1. Stenson 2. Mickelson, 3. Scott 4. Tiger

Mickelson for wins back to back on links courses that he has always sucked at playing.

Stenson for coming back from the depths of crappy golf and being the only player week in and week out to be on top of leaderboards of every major event. Just an amazing year for this guy. Plus he smacks the ball like no other.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered Commentervwgolfer
I would suggest almost the exact opposite order of vwgolfer.

1. Woods
2. Scott
3. Stenson
4. Mickelson

Of course if Mickelson had closed the deal at Merion, this wouldn't even be a debate.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFWIW
This discussion is objectively void and nothing more than an exercise in playing favorites.

Now if you are interested in a points based system that removes all subjectivity you can read about one here:

The most recent results of that system can be found here:
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Hey DTF, that "points based system" only counts PGA Tour events. So it hardly is a "worldwide" representation.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFWIW
Last I looked neither The Open Championship nor The Masters nor The US Open nor The PGA Championship are "PGA Tour events". Those all count in "that points based system"...
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
A points based comparison of the four players mentioned in Geoff's poll would swing decisively to Woods (from a post I made at the poll site - directed to commenter John).

Sorry John, while I agree with your comment that a worthy case could be made for each of the four, Stenson is NOT my choice.

He had his best year ever, but it did not match Woods by any reasonable measure IMO.

World Ranking Points earned in 2013 - was his BEST comparison. In 31 ranked starts he only trailed Woods slightly 484.6 vs 488.3 but he needed 31 ranked starts vs 19 for Woods. There was no comparison in ave ranking points per start or overall OWGR ranking indexes.

And, while Stenson did top the final ET standings, Woods also outperformed him on ET. They each competed in all four majors and three WGC's (Woods skipped HSBC and Stenson did not play Cadillac). Woods earned 56% more money in his seven events vs Stenson's seven (and posted two wins). In total Stenson played 17 ranked events sanctioned by ET compared to 9 for Woods. With nearly double the starts including his win in Dubai, he barely earned more money on ET ($4.4 vs $4.1 million). Woods crushed him in earnings per start.

Woods - given overall performances in 2013 in all Federation ranked starts - was CLEARLY head and shoulders above the other three.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSGarrett
For FWIW's benefit, here's another points based system that counts every event in the world:

Far right column, "points gained in 2013".

Very close race between #1 & #2 but the #1 point gainer got all his points in 19 events, the #2 point gainer played 31 events to secure his points. For those keeping score at home #2 played 63% more events, and got fewer points.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Nice work SGarrett ;0)
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
As a complete aside, don't look now but the new breed emotionless cold calculating giant slayer known as Martin Kaymer has slid all the way to 39th in the OWGR...Jimmy Walker picked up more OWGR points this year.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
SGarrett - that's a nice piece of analytical work.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered Commenternguyenvuminh
Kaymer is not the first and won't be the last player to generate decent rankings as a non-member but slide downward in the rankings after joining PGA Tour. Four highly ranked non-members matched number 125 on the member list at the end of the 2012 season and became members for 2013. Kaymer, mentioned above, also took out membership based on his earlier major victory.

Here is a summary of how those five fared in 2013.

Two of the five qualified (in the FE top 125) for the playoffs.

David Lynn entered 2013 ranked 46th and inched up to 45th at year-end . up 1 place. His year-end FE standing was was 48th.
Martin Kaymer entered 2013 ranked 28th and fell to 39th at year-end - a decline of 11 places. His year-end FE standing was 86th.

Three did not qualify for the playoffs (fortunately, the first two below "barely" kept their cards based on money rather than FE points).

Peter Hanson entered 2013 ranked 19th and fell to 48th at year-end - a decline of 29 places. His year-end FE standing was 127th.
Nicolas Colsaerts entered 2013 ranked 36th and fell to 68th at year-end - a decline of 32 places. His year-end FE standing was 128th.
Ryo Ishikawa entered 2013 ranked 75th and fell to 83rd at year-end - a decline of 8 places. His year-end FE standing was 141st. He managed to retain his card at the Tour Finals.

For many talented players from around the world, it is easier to get onto PGA Tour (often via a good finish or two at a world event) than to stay on PGA Tour for a sustained period.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSGarrett
All 4 majors are considered official PGA Tour events and count toward official PGA Tour money, FedEx Cup points, Vardon Trophy, etc. Just because the PGA Tour doesn't administer them doesn't mean they aren't official tour events.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFWIW
I think it is interesting that Phil, had he qualified, would have been one of the top 2 or 3 guys going into Dubai. He won 2 Euro Tour events, including the Open. He also did well at US Open and CA-Cadillac. He had over $3 million in Euro Tour winnings, which I believe puts him at 3rd place, even without the benefit of any winnings at the Dubai event. Of course, he was short a few events to be eligible. But that to me puts Stenson's Race to Dubai's title win in a little perspective.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
@Brian S: I agree, and it also puts Luke Donald's forgotten 2011 season in perspective, since he was the top earner in US events as well as in European events - not just "European Tour events", counting US majors and WGCs.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterHawkeye
Stenson's caddy bought a Ferrari. Pretty strong argument there of who was POY
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBuck
They certainly do count toward those lists but in no way shape or form are they PGA Tour events...

So the OWGR results, I hit the high spots but SGarrett gave you the full download, have a beef with that analysis?
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
"Stenson's caddy bought a Ferrari. Pretty strong argument there of who was POY"

...or a prime example of why lots of caddies end up flat broke ;0)
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Geoff, why do you and Finestien not get along? Its just your opinions on a sport... seems like you guys would also argue about what is the best way to tie your shoes. Just curious because its really distracting in all these video clips that you post. I thought golf was supposed to be a gentleman's game on and off the course. Thanks
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterQuestionman
I hadn't watched that until Questionman questioned you, man....

....but I love it -- give that windbag Feinstein as much crap as humanly possible!! You all do realize his brother is one of those evil investment bankers, don't you?
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Inbee, in a laugher.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterRon
For all of you making the case that Stenson is NOT the player of the year, remember, this award is more like the Oscars. Winning an Oscar is not based on a points system, it is a subjective choice.
More importantly is that Phil's and Tiger's results should be handicapped because they both fly on their own Gulfstream jets. Much like using a Bentley golf cart during a round, a personally tailored, bespoke Gulfstream gives an unfair advantage to the user who arrives at the tourney more rested and relaxed than a golfer who may fly on a chartered Lear Jet, for example. The obvious and definitive choice, therefore, is Stenson.
12.20.2013 | Unregistered Commenter3PuttAficionado
Clearly, if he can't fly around in his own jet he can't be POY!!!
12.21.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJS
If Paula Creamer had had Inbee's year, nobody would be talking about the men.
12.21.2013 | Unregistered Commenter3foot1
"....remember, this award is more like the Oscars. Winning an Oscar is not based on a points system, it is a subjective choice."

A late contender for the 2013 100% Nonsense Award!

Uhhh, there's a reason score is kept...
12.21.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
**if your comment was tongue in cheek, which I suspect it may have been, you got me ;)
12.21.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Feinstein is the smartest guy in any room he walks into. Just ask him.

I enjoy reading what he writes, but my ears hurt when I listen to him talk. Maybe because it's tough for me to detect the smugness in his journalistic efforts. I still rank "A Season on the Brink" as one of my all-time favs.
12.21.2013 | Unregistered CommenterPA PLAYA
PA, I too read that way back when. I came away from. It a big fan of Bobby Knight, and still am....oddly, Bobby was pissed at Feinstein after it was published.
12.21.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
I have never taken John's razzing of Geoff to be anything more that guys backslappimg visa-mastercard.

David F. is the smug know it all, whose poor attempts at humor are why the mute button was invented.
12.21.2013 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth

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