By the Numbers: 2013 RBC Heritage (and the Masters)
By Stephanie Wei under By the Numbers
G-Mac sporting the tartan jacket that comes along with winning the trophy at Hilton Head

G-Mac sporting the tartan jacket that comes along with winning the trophy at Hilton Head

Graeme McDowell, one of the most popular players (especially in the interview room and at his recently-opened tavern, Nona Blue, in Orlando), returned to the PGA Tour winner’s circle at last week’s RBC Heritage Classic. Let’s take a look at how G-Mac won, along with a quick peek at Adam Scott’s victory at the Masters.

[*Ed note: Sorry this is a bit late — it’s my fault, not Shoshana’s. Please forgive me!]

  • You might have noticed (or that’s just my vanity talking) that there wasn’t a “By the Numbers” column for the Masters. That’s because the Masters, like other majors, does not use ShotLink, so there are very few useful statistics available. However, we do know that Scott led the field in greens in regulation.

  • Now, how important is hitting greens at Augusta National Golf Club? In Tiger Woods’ four wins, he finished the week ranked in the top five, but this year, he was T16. Given how tough the greens are at ANGC, you’re going to have a hard time contending if you’re constantly scrambling and trying to one-putt to save par.

  • Moving on to the Heritage! On the way to winning at Harbour Town, Graeme was solid across the board. He finished within the top-10 in the field in four different categories: fairways hit, greens in regulation, strokes gained putting and total distance of putts made.

  • Webb Simpson, who lost in a playoff to G-Mac, was also solid in several stats categories. He finished in the top 10 in fairways hit, led the field in GIR, and finished 13th in strokes gained putting. Basically, it helped that he did multiple things well – ball striking and putting. It wasn’t a week that allows you to hide any weaknesses in your game.

  • Overall, hitting fairways was a key to success at Harbour Town. Charley Hoffman was the only player that placed in the top 8, despite being ranked outside the top 20 in fairways hit. He compensated for his lack of accuracy off the tee by finishing first in strokes gained putting.

  • McDowell became only the fourth major winner since 2009 to win a subsequent event on the PGA Tour. Previously, only Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy and Keegan Bradley had been able to back up a major win with another victory in the last three-and-a-half years, where we’ve seen 12 different major winners.

There you have it, this week’s By the Numbers. Comments, questions and bitter invectives appreciated (well, maybe not so much the last).

–Shoshana Agus-Kleinman

(AP Photo/Stephen Morton)