Ranking the 2010 Major Championships in Golf

Although we’ve still got a little ways to go in the 2010 PGA Tour season, the major championship season is officially over, and well, it certainly ended with a bang. While it’s no science, it’s always fun to look back and decide which majors I enjoyed most, and which just didn’t have all that much appeal. So with that, let’s take a trip down memory lane, and rank the 2010 major championships in golf.

4. British Open (St. Andrews)

After watching Tom Watson do his thing at the 2009 British Open at Turnberry, it was going to be hard for this year’s tournament to match the events of the previous year. But hey, this was still the British Open, and it was being played at St. Andrews. Something totally awesome had to happen, right? Umm, not exactly.

To be quite frank, this was one of the most boring events I’ve watched in golf this season. That in no way is a knock on the winner of this event, Louis Oosthuizen. He wasn’t very well known entering this tournament, and his seven-shot victory was one of the more impressive feats in golf this year. But from start to finish, this tournament just did not offer the suspense and excitement that we expect from a major championship.

Had Tiger Woods been the one with the seven-stroke advantage on Sunday, obviously, things would have been different. But due to the lack of drama on the weekend, and lack of a truly compelling story, it made this major an average one at best.

Hey, at least it offered us this shot by Miguel Angel Jimenez though.

3. U.S. Open (Pebble Beach)

This was the first of the two major championships that Dustin Johnson would be remembered for during the four majors this season. And had he known what would happen a few months later at Whistling Straits, he probably would have been just fine with people remembering him for his collapse in the final round at Pebble Beach.

Johnson was actually one of the hot picks to win this tournament, after winning at Pebble earlier in the season. It was just hard to watch his final round 82, but it certainly wasn’t the first time someone folded under the pressure at a major (which would become evident a few months later as well). However, that opened the door for Graeme McDowell, who gladly accepted the opportunity, and won his first-ever major championship in the process.

In terms of excitement, this one wasn’t the most exciting U.S. Open in recent memory, as it sort of felt like we were seeing numerous bad shots down the stretch, and players were essentially knocking themselves out of contention instead of making the shots to get in contention. Scores were high on Sunday, and the back nine was brutal, but McDowell was the one who was able to push past this and pick up the victory. Again, not a whole lot of fun to watch players struggle mightily in the final round, but this tournament wasn’t all that bad.

2. PGA Championship (Whistling Straits)

There’s no doubt that this will go down as the most-talked about majors of 2010, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it was the best major of the 2010 season. I really enjoyed this tournament from start to finish, and it didn’t hurt that one of my favorite players on tour (Nick Watney) had the lead entering the final round.

But then of course, one shot from a piece of trampled sand changed everything, and sent the finish of this event into complete disarray. Dustin Johnson saw himself at the center of a a major for the second time this season, but this time around, the consequences were much more tough to accept than his performance at the U.S. Open. He suffered the two-stroke penalty, and then had to watch helplessly as Martin Kaymer defeated Bubba Watson in a three-hole playoff to win his first-ever major. That could have been Johnson, but it just wasn’t to be.

What made this event really compelling was the true uncertainty that surrounded the final round. Once Watney started off the day with a bogey, and the proceeded to just hit the ball over the place, we knew that someone besides Watney would be walking away from Whistling Straits with the trophy. Problem was, it seemed like we could never get a grasp on who that would be until Kaymer actually made the winning putt in the playoff. Guys like Zach Johnson, Steve Elkington, and Rory McIlroy all seemed to have putts that would have gave them a shot at the lead, but couldn’t capitalize.

Though this tournament will be remembered more for the Johnson/PGA blunder on the final hole, we must give credit where it’s due, as Kaymer was the one that stood out above the rest in the final round that golf fans won’t forget anytime soon.

1. The Masters (Augusta National)

The Masters marked the return of Tiger to the game of golf. That was the big storyline heading into the event. So of course, we should have known that Tiger’s biggest nemesis throughout the years would come in and steal the headlines. And that’s exactly what Phil Mickelson did, as Lefty went on to win for the third time in his career at Augusta.

The thing is, even though Phil winning was a HUGE story, considering the types of miraculous shots that he made in the final round to do so, there was a still a lot of intriguing happenings at this event.

Tiger finished tied for fourth in his first tournament back since the scandal. Lee Westwood was the leader entering the final round, and once again saw major championship glory slip through his fingers after tough day on Sunday. Fred Couples was a major factor the entire week, and had a chance to win the thing entering the final round. Tom Watson was in the lead early, and made golf fans think back to his performance at Turnberry last year.

Simply put, this tournament had it all for four days straight, and it culminated with an absolutely brilliant performance by Phil on Sunday. Given the difficulties with cancer that his wife has faced, this was the feel-good ending that golf fans love to see. This will not only go down as my favorite major of the season, but my favorite tournament of the year as well.

How would you rank the 2010 major championships in golf?

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Tags: 2010 British Open 2010 Golf Majors 2010 Masters 2010 U.s. Open Augusta National Best Golf Tourmament Of 2010 Bubba Watson Dustin Johnson Dustin Johnson Ruling Fred Couples Golf Golf History Golf Majors Golf Rankings Graeme Mcdowell Lee Westwood Louis Oosthuizen Major Championship Martin Kaymer Miguel Angel Jimenez Miguel Angel Jimenez Wall Shot Nick Watney Pebble Beach PGA PGA Championship Pga Rules Phil Mickelson Ranking Golf Majors Rory McIlroy St. Andrews Steve Elkington The Masters The Open Championship Tiger Woods Tom Watson Turnberry U.S. Open Whistling Straits Zach Johnson

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