Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Just How Dominant Has Yani Tseng Been?

When the season started 5 players were jockeying around for the #1 spot in the Rolex Rankings. In fact Yani Tseng was #5. Let us take a look at just how dominant Yani has been this year.

Money Leaders:
1- Yani Tseng - $2,396,838.00
2- Cristie Kerr - $1,359,093
3- Stacy Lewis - $1,218,443

1- Yani Tseng - 6
T2 - Lincicome, Pettersen, and Webb - 2

Scoring Average: (Winner gets Hall of Fame point).
1- Yani Tseng - 69.59
2- Cristie Kerr - 70.53
3- Stacy Lewis - 70.77

Rolex Player of the Year: (Winner gets Hall of Fame point).
1- Yani Tseng - 289 Points
2- Stacy Lewis - 115
3- Cristie Kerr - 104

Greens In Regulation:
1- Yani Tseng - 76%
2- Paula Creamer - 75.5%
3- Suzann Pettersen 75.3%

Driving Distance: (Lexi Thompson would be #1, if she had been an LPGA member)
1- Yani Tseng - 268.6 yards
2- Maria Hjorth - 266.7
3- Michelle Wie - 266.1

Putts per greens in regulation:
1- Cristie Kerr - 1.75
T2- Yani Tseng - 1.76
T2- I.K. Kim 1.76

Top 10 finishes:
1- Yani Tseng - 11
2- Cristie Kerr - 10
Stacy Lewis - 10

Percentage of rounds under par:
1- Yani Tseng - 70.5%
2- Stacy Lewis 62.9%
3- I.K. Kim 60.4%

Birdies per round:
1- Yani Tseng - 4.77
2- Cristie Kerr - 4.03
3- Brittany Lincicome - 3.76

Percentage of rounds in the 60's:
1- Yani Tseng - 32/61 = 52.5%
2- Cristie Kerr - 25/59 = 42.4%
3- Stacy Lewis - 23/62 = 37.1%

Of the above statistics, the one I find the scariest is her second place ranking in putting. Putting was never her strong point. In 2009 she ranked 51st, and in 2010 15th. So much for her one weakness.

The above figures don't lie, Yani has been totally dominant. As I stated in a previous posting, Yani has 10 Hall of fame points wrapped up this year already. She came into this year with nine. If she doesn't win again this year she will still have 19 points. You need 26 to get in. You have to believe she will have enough points sometime next year. You need to be on the tour 10 years to enter; next year will be her 5th.

In closing, I would like to open up for debate whether or not it is a good thing for the tour to have one person dominate. Some will say that the publicity of a player dominating (like Tiger Woods did), will result in higher TV ratings, which is what the tour needs. I agree. Strictly as a fan, I think it is much more interesting when players are fighting for the top honors. What do you think?


CindyJ said...

I totally agree. It's much more fun when players are competing for the top honors!

a4a2b73e-f540-11e0-8291-000bcdcb5194 said...

Hi Tony - Really enjoy reading your site! Keep up the great work! But one correction regarding Yani. She started the LPGA season ranked #1 (due to her 2 wins on the ALPG prior to the Honda LPGA Thailand tournament).

I believe Yani's current dominance is the best thing to happen for women's golf. It pressures other players to improve and it helps frame one of the main themes for next year. "Who can stop Yani?"

With Lexi & So Yeon Ryu coming to play, next year should be even more exciting to watch. I'm really hoping the LPGA expands & grows these next few years. They have such a wonderful product.

Tony Jesselli (Tonyj5) said...

Thanks for the feedback. What I meant is that Yani was #5 in the Rolex Rankings when the Year started. The January 4th 2011 Rankings.

The Constructivist said...

Hey Tony, great post! I personally like when there's more of a free-for-all for top honors on tour myself. But it is fun to witness real greatness, too, especially given how good we know Tseng's lead chase pack is.

I tried to quantify dominance back in the Ochoa Era! Here are the links:

I don't have time to use my formulae this year on Ya Ni, but you might find it interesting to crunch the numbers yourself!

The Constructivist said...

Ward Clayton uses my winning percentage stat (although I'm sure others came up with it before I did!) in his latest Stats and Stuff post at

He only looks at a few of the best seasons, combining it with near-misses, but he doesn't include many seasons with much high winning percentages. See my 1st post for the complete list.

Tony Jesselli (Tonyj5) said...

Bruce, I went back and read your very interesting posts in which you provided the above links.

I don't have time to run all of those numbers, but I do have some very interesting observations.

First, Lorena's numbers didn't hold up in 2008. She tailed off some after your post. She won 7 of the 22 tournaments she entered or 31.8%.

Since Yani has played in all 18 tournaments this year, her win percentage for events she played, and her win percentage for total tour events will be the same.

She has won 6 of 18 or 33%.
As good as that is, there have been better years than that. Here is a look at the leaders with a minimum of 18 tournaments played.

Annika Sorenstam (2005) 10/20 50.0%
Annika Sorenstam (2002) 11/23 47.8%
Mickey Wright (1964) 13/28 46.4%
Annika Sorenstam (2004) 8/18 44.45%
Louise Suggs (1953) 8/19 42.1%
Nancy Lopez (1979) 8/19 42.1%
Mickey Wright (1963) 11/27 40.7%
Betsey Rawls (1959) 10/26 38.5%
Marlene Hagg (1956) 8/23 34.7%
Nancy Lopez (1978) 9/26 34.6%
Kathy Whitworth (1968) 10/30 33.3%

With 5 events left this year, 3 in Asia, Yani can still improve on her numbers, but has a ways to go before approaching Annika's numbers.

The Constructivist said...

Yup, that's what I've got, too! What I haven't had time to calculate is winnings percentages....