Sunday, September 19

Kevin Streelman Works the Playoff System

KEVIN STREELMAN WILL PLAY in the season-ending Tour Championship for the first time in his career. And that’s not all. Next year Streelman will make his first appearances at the Masters and British Open thanks to a FedEx Cup playoff run that has seen him rise 73 spots in the rankings.

The top 30 will play in the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta this week. A fat paycheck awaits. The 30 players will split a $7.5 million purse. Someone will also collect $10 million for winning the playoffs points race. At 29th, Streelman was the second-to-the-last man in the field, which also gets him into next year’s first three majors.

Streelman is an example of how the playoffs can work for someone who starts at the back of the pack. The Duke grad and mini-tour veteran who joined the PGA Tour in 2007 started the playoffs in 102nd out of 125 players. He made a big move with a T5 at The Barclays. Then he followed with a T45 and T43 at the Deutsche Bank and BMW Championship, respectively, to slip into the top 30.

Hello, East Lake. Hello, Augusta.

The only time Streelman has been to Augusta National Golf Club was to watch a practice round when he was a student at Duke. But Mike Christensen, Streelman’s caddie and Duke golf teammate, has played three rounds at the home of the Masters. That’s a start. They’ll just be thrilled to be there.

−The Armchair Golfer

(Image: The Gordons/Flickr)

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