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Every year that lull in the golf world between the end of August and the start of a new year seems to get a little longer, but before we know it the West Coast swing on the PGA Tour will be here. Then, we’ll blink, and Masters week will be upon us.
The storylines heading into another year of professional golf seem to be endless with so many question marks surrounding LIV Golf, a new-look PGA Tour schedule, Tiger Woods’ uncertain future, and the 2023 Ryder Cup taking place in Rome in the Fall.
While there is plenty to look forward to, the major championships are still the end all be all and will define what kind of year it was in golf when we look back at the year that was.
2023 Golf Major Championship Predictions
The Masters | April 6-9
Tony Finau: You could certainly make the argument that Tony Finau is the hottest player on the planet heading into 2023 with three wins and three other Top 10 finishes in his last eight starts in 2022. While there may be a four-month hiatus between now and the Masters, something feels different with Finau nowadays where it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him carry this momentum into the year’s first major.
The 33-year-old has the game to win on any golf course and certainly enjoys the walk around Augusta National with three Top 10 finishes in his five career starts at the Masters.
PGA Championship | May 8-11
Will Zalatoris: The 26-year-old left last year’s PGA Championship with a bad taste in his mouth after losing to Justin Thomas in a playoff, but was able to wash it away by earning his first PGA Tour win at the FedEx St. Jude Championship a few months later.
With the monkey off of his back and the 2023 PGA Championship serving as a bit of a revenge spot for Zalatoris, it should not be a surprise to anyone if he earns his first major win at Oak Hill.
Zalatoris’ game travels anywhere seeing as how he’s arguably the best ball-strike walking the planet right now. You add that simple yet key element to the formula here – and the fact he seems to elevate his game in majors – you have what seems to be a perfect recipe for a career-altering win for the Wake Forest product.
U.S. Open | June 15-18
Patrick Cantlay: The Long Beach product winning his first major championship at Los Angeles Country Club may seem like a storybook ending, but sometimes those too-good-to-be-true moments come to fruition.
Cantlay may not have the greatest track record at the U.S. Open with just two Top 15 finishes in seven starts, but much like Finau, he seemed to have found something at the end of 2022. He finished T-14 in the U.S. Open and backed that up with a T-8 in The Open at St. Andrews to go along with a win at the BMW Championship in August.
The California kid gets it done in L.A. for his first career major championship to put a bow on what I believe will be the best overall season of his career.
The Open | July 20-23
Jordan Spieth: It’s hard not to pick Jordan Spieth to win The Open given his track record in the event, so I’m going to continue doing so until he proves me wrong.
Since 2015 Spieth has hoisted the Claret Jug once, finished runner-up another time, and earned three other Top 9 finishes along the way. The man simply loves links golf and playing historical golf courses, and Royal Liverpool certainly checks both of those boxes.
Spieth and The Open go together like Spieth and the Masters. He could show up to an Open or Augusta National having missed eight straight cuts, but once he steps foot onto the property none of that matters.
There is some sort of magic when it comes to Spieth and The Open and I think we see it come alive yet again in 2023.
Follow Mark Harris on Twitter @ItIsMarkHarris