With the announcement of Corey Pavin's captain picks today, the Ryder Cup field is complete. Stewie Cink, Zach Johnson, Rickie Fowler, and Tiger Woods round out Team USA and make them a pretty formidable squad in my opinion. Though they only have a combined one win between the four of them this season, these were the right picks for the Ryder Cup. Let's take a look at each player and see what they bring to the squad looking to defend its title at Celtic Manor in 2010.
STEWART CINK- Stewie will play on his fifth Ryder Cup team in 2010, but he has not had great success in his past four go-arounds with a win percentage of about .200. However, he has had success on Open-style courses, winning the British Open in 2009 and finishing in sixth in 2007. I think this was Pavin's weakest pick, and I might have chosen J.B. Holmes instead, but it was a good choice to add another veteran to a team rife with rookies. Hopefully Stewie can turn his Ryder Cup record around this year.
ZACH JOHNSON- ZJ went 1-2-1 at the K Club in 2006, but he is a very good match player. He has played on two winning President's Cup teams and has fared well in the Accenture Match Play Championships. I think he will win more matches than he will lose in 2010. Plus, Jesus is his homeboy.
RICKIE FOWLER- HUGE PICK. Rickie is a rookie on tour, but he is a career 7-1 in the Walker Cup (Ryder Cup for amateurs) and brings the youthful enthusiasm that Anthony Kim brought in 2008 at Valhalla. Moreover, the matchup of Rickie Fowler versus Rory McIlroy is going to be one of the most exciting matches in recent memory and will mark a new generation of Ryder Cup players. This was a huge pick for Pavin and I could not agree with him more on it. If Kuchar is the Donk's boy, then Rickie Fowler is my boy. I see him dominating at Celtic Manor.
TIGER WOODS- If Pavin did not pick Tiger, it would have been the stupidest decision ever made. Tiger and Stricker showed that they are a dominant pairing at the President's Cup last year, and I expect that to continue again this year at the Ryder. Moreover, you can tell Tiger is starting to find his game. He put three sub-70 rounds together in a row at the Deutsche Bank Championship, and he started to speak positively about his game. Expect Tiger to peak at the Ryder Cup.
Pavin's picks were solid, Monty's were not. Luke Donald was a good pick, but Padraig Harrington is off his game, and nobody likes Italian people like Edoardo Molinari. He would have been better served to choose Paul Casey and Justin Rose, but decided to be a keep a European tour theme for his squad. Couple those picks with the fact that Lee Westwood is coming off an injury and you've got the potential for an upset across the pond. If the young guys for Team USA can come through, Team USA could win for the first time overseas since The Belfry in 1993. We will have more coverage on this as the tournament draws nearer, but for now I like where Team USA is sitting.