2023 Rocket Mortgage Classic: Top 10 Power Rankings

Rocket Mortgage Classic, Taylor Pendrith, Detroit Golf Club, (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Rocket Mortgage Classic, Taylor Pendrith, Detroit Golf Club, (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /
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The PGA Tour heads to the Midwest for the first time this year. We’re at Detroit Golf Club in Detroit, Michigan, for the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

This event debuted in 2019 and has been at Detroit Golf Club every year.

DGC opened as a six-hole course in 1906. Famed golf architect Donald Ross came in 1913 to increase the club to 36 holes.

DGC has hosted big events across its century-plus history. It hosted the 1911 Western Amateur, 1941 Ryder Cup, and 1992 U.S. Mid-Amateur.

The field of 156 players this week will be taking on a 7,334-yard, par-72 layout that is a composite of the property’s North and South courses.

The bentgrass/poa annua greens aren’t as severely tea cup shaped as other Ross designs like Pinehurst No. 2, but they are still one of the courses’ main defenses.

The fairways and rough are bentgrass/poa mixed with bluegrass. Fairways tend to run fast this time of year but are very generous and easy to hit. Hitting 70-plus percent of fairways for the week is not uncommon for those who make the cut.

Bombers have an advantage at the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

Given three of the last four weeks on the PGA Tour have been either designated events or a major, this week’s field is understandably weak.

Just five top-25 players in the Official World Golf Ranking and seven from the top 25 of the FedEx Cup standings are present.

The weather forecast looks pretty good with temperatures in the 60s-80s and a chance of rain mid-weekend on what looks to be an otherwise dry week.

Let’s dive into whose career can blast off with a win at the Rocket Mortgage Classic:

Rocket Mortgage Classic, Detroit Golf Club, PGA Tour, Detroit, Tony Finau, Rocket Mortgage
Chris Kirk, Rocket Mortgage Classic, Syndication: DetroitFreePress /

All Chris Kirk does at the Rocket Mortgage Classic is peel off top-25 finishes.

He debuted at this event by taking T-21st (67-65-70-73) in 2020, followed by T-12th (67-68-70-69) in 2021 and T-17th (68-69-67-70) last year. Kirk’s fired 2-under-par or better in all but one round, the 1-over 73 in 2020. His scoring average at Detroit Golf Club is 68.58.

“This is just an awesome golf course,” Kirk was transcribed by Tee Scripts in 2020.

"“I wasn’t here last year, but yeah, from the first time going out there, it’s just such a beautiful, classic golf course, really fun greens.”"

It’s already a successful season in many ways for Kirk regardless of what happens the rest of the way.

It had been nearly eight years since his last win on the PGA Tour when he beat Eric Cole in a playoff to win the Honda Classic in February.

In those eight years, Kirk battled alcoholism and was either away from the game or on the Korn Ferry Tour for brief stretches. Injuries popped up, too.

To his credit, Kirk’s been candid and open about his struggles. He sought help and leaned on his support system to make an inspiring turn toward sobriety and a turn in his golf game.

The former collegiate standout at Georgia is now a five-time PGA Tour winner and a dark horse vying for one of the final American Ryder Cup spots in a few months if he can close the season strong.

Kirk will have a rest advantage on a good chunk of the field this week as he sat out last week’s designated event, the Travelers Championship.

A bit of time away to practice should be helpful coming off a trio of missed cuts. It’s the first time the 38-year-old has posted consecutive MCs since April/May 2022.

Prior to those three poor showings, Kirk had been solid ever since Honda. A T-10th in April at the Valero Texas Open began a run of six straight made cuts that included top-30s at the Masters and U.S. Open.

He’s gaining the most ground on the field this season around the greens, sitting 12th in strokes gained per round (.376). That skill isn’t uber-important at the Rocket Mortgage Classic, but he’s 36th in SG tee-to-green (.664) and won’t be as affected as normal by some occasional wayward tee shots.