Who is the Best Escape Artist on the PGA Tour?
PGA Tour players conjure up magical chip shots that leave spectators in awe.
Those are the shots that they show over and over again on tv, but in reality the stats give a true reflection of what really happens out on the course.
Phil Mickelson always gets shown getting up and down from some outrageous spots on the course, but in reality Phil’s scrambling average is 60%.
One of the most memorable chip shots of recent years has to be the shot that Tiger Woods holed at the Masters in 2005.
That shot gets shown over and over in highlights packages.
Let’s take a look at 5 statistics that will give a more accurate portrayal of how good the pros really are at getting the ball up and down.
- Overall scrambling
- Scrambling from the rough
- Scrambling from the fringe
- Proximity to hole from rough
- Proximity to hole from fringe
|PGA Tour Stats 2017||1st||75th||150th|
|1. Overall scrambling||Ian Poulter 67.36%||Shawn Stefani 59.55||Brad Fritsch 56.42|
|2. Scrambling from the rough||Webb Simpson 69.12%||Shane Lowry 58.58||Mark Leishman 53.42%|
|3. Scrambling from the fringe||Rickie Fowler 100%||Wesley Bryan 91.11%||JT Poston 86.79%|
|4. Proximity to hole from rough||Ryan Armour 6’3”||Patrick Cantlay 7’10”||Dustin Johnson 8’6”|
|5. Proximity to hole from fringe||Russell Knox 1’10”||10+ players tied 2’11”||10+ players tied 3’5”|
Overall scrambling refers to the average percentage of times that a player got up and down from a number of different positions.
This stat is a good indicator of what amateur golfers should strive towards with regards to their chipping in general.
For instance a good goal to set before a round would be to get up and down on at least half of the holes where you don’t hit the green in regulation.
Some days might be tougher than others to achieve this depending on where you missed the green, but in general 50% up and downs made is a good rule of thumb.
Scrambling from the rough
The rough can at times be a very rough experience for some golfers, especially for high handicap players that don’t spend time practicing their short games.
It is important to realize that the best players in the world don’t always get it up and down from the rough either.
By looking at these stats it will be much easier for you as an amateur golfer to set realistic expectations for yourself.
Scrambling from the fringe
Looking at all of these statistics can be boring and confusing, but it is very important to take a close look at this particular stat.
Rickie Fowler has a 100% record of getting the ball up and down when chipping from the fringe, in total during the season he had 27 attempts.
Chipping out of the rough or hitting a crazy lob shot might be more fun and rewarding if you pull it off, but at the end of the day it’s essential to realize the importance of the boring chip shots from around the green.
Realizing the importance is the first step to lower scoring, but ultimately you have to practice these shots on a regular basis.
Jordan Spieth ranked 151st in this category last season, I bet you he will be working on his chipping from the fringe during the off season.
Proximity to hole from rough
Chipping out of the rough is demanding, even for the best players in the world. Dustin Johnson ranks 150th in this stat with an average proximity to the hole of 8’6”.
The leader in this category gets the ball 2 feet closer to the hole on average, but still leaving yourself with a 6 footer for par can be very intimidating.
Realizing that it is difficult to control the ball when chipping out of the rough will allow you to not be too hard on yourself when you don’t get the ball up and down.
Golf is difficult and frustrating at the best of times, giving yourself a breather every now and again can only improve your scores.
Proximity to hole from fringe
Earlier we saw why the PGA Tour’s slogan of “These guys are good” is very applicable.
Rickie Fowler got up and down 100% of the time when chipping from the fringe, the following stat is just as impressive.
Russell Knox’s average proximity to the hole when chipping from the fringe was 1’10” in 37 attempts.
In golf it is important to do the basic things well, like a basic chip shot from the fringe, next time you go and practice use these stats as motivation to work on those stock standard chip shots.
Golf Improvement Resources
If you want to take your golf game to the next level, see your scores drop, your drives get longer off the tee, less 3 putting, more up & downs, then you need to check out these resources below.
The 2 Hour Short Game Practice Plans
Build your putting and chipping skills by advancing from Level 1 all the way to Level 10. These practice routines take roughly 2 hours if you don’t have long to practice, perfect for high school golfers, college golfers, and those with a few hours after work at night. Print the worksheets and try to pass each level in the program.
The Indoor Improvement Program
For 21 days, I walk you through practice drills and practice routines to build your putting skills, chipping skills, and golf swing indoors while the weather is keeping you off the golf course. Plus you get an 8 week workout plan to build golf strength and stability so you can drive the ball further and straighter. See all other bonuses we’ve thrown in.
The Outdoor Improvement Program
This 36 day training plan is easy to follow with step by step drills and routines that challenge your putting, chipping, and golf swing. You’ll work at the golf course on the practice range and practice green and it comes with worksheets to fill out after each practice to monitor your growth in each statistical category. See all other bonuses we’ve included.
10 Best Short Game Drills
Enter your name and email to get instant access to our PDF download of the best short game drills to improve your golf skills.