The year’s fourth and final major already is here.
The 100th PGA Championship will take place at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis this week with a handful of players vying for their first and second major titles, as well as Tiger Woods gunning for major No. 15 once again.
This will be the last time the PGA will be held in August, as it will become the year’s second major next year and be held in May.
Patrick Reed (The Masters), Brooks Koepka (U.S. Open) and Francesco Molinari (The British Open) took home the year’s first three majors, respectively. Will one them capture their second major of the year? Can Jordan Spieth complete the career grand slam? Is Rory McIlroy’s major drought set to come to an end?
With the 100th PGA Championship kicking off Thursday, it’s time to get the answer to those questions and check out the five golfers with the best chance to lift the Wanamaker Trophy.
Rory McIlroy — Bellerive is being described as a bombers paradise, and that is right up McIlroy’s alley. He followed up a T-2 at The Open Championship with a T-6 at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and this could be the week he finally puts everything together. McIlroy is the best driver of the golf ball in the world, and if the course plays soft due to the rain then he could run away with major No. 5.
Justin Thomas — Can Thomas win back-to-back PGA Championships as well as back-to-back events? After pulling away from McIlroy on Sunday at the Bridgestone, Thomas will look to become the third player to win the PGA the week after winning the Bridgestone, joining Woods and McIlroy who he also will be playing with for the first two rounds. Bellerive suits Thomas’ gameplan of bombing it deep and hitting high wedge shots, so don’t be surprised to see him become the second player in history to win back-to-back PGA Championships.
Jason Day — The Australian is a little overlooked coming into this week, but the course sets up well for those who draw the golf ball and Day might be one of the best in the game. He’s a combined 46-under-par at the PGA since 2013 and has recorded four top-10s in his last five appearances. If he can get the driver straightened out, it could be a good week for Day.
Tony Finau — Finau has finished in the top 10 at each of the year’s first three majors and his length off the tee should help him tear Bellerive apart. He’s had a solid year and a win this weekend not only would give him his first career major but also make him a lock for the United States Ryder Cup team. It feels like something special is on the horizon for Finau.
Jordan Spieth — Golf’s golden boy has had a horrid year by his standards, especially with the putter, but with the career grand slam on the line, don’t be surprised to see Spieth in contention come Sunday. There’s zero evidence — aside from a great showing at The Open — that says Spieth will make a run at the Wanamaker, and yet, we’re pretty sure he’ll give himself a chance to win major No. 4.
Thumbnail photo via Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports Images