Ryan Moore named final Ryder Cup captain's pick
ATLANTA -- Sources have confirmed to GolfDigest.com that U.S. Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III will use his final captain’s pick on Ryan Moore.
The pick was officially announced by NBC's Mike Tirico during halftime of the Sunday Night Football game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Chicago Bears.
Moore finished second at the Tour Championship on Sunday, losing to Rory McIlroy on the fourth hole of a sudden-death playoff, but put on an impressive display -- particularly with his putter -- in the process.
Playing alongside McIlroy in the season-finale, the two combined for 11 birdies, an eagle and just one bogey as each shot 64 in regulation before landing in a three-way playoff with Kevin Chappell.
After Chappell was eliminated when McIllroy and Moore each made birdie on the first extra hole to extend the playoff, the two continued to trade shots for three more holes, including on the last, where Moore poured in a 17-footer for par only to watch McIlroy make a 15-footer for birdie on top of him for the win.
“He's a fantastic player,” McIlroy said. “He's been playing well for a long time, for a few months now. He's just such a gritty competitor. He even showed with the putts he holed coming down the stretch.”
With the U.S. saving its final pick until after the Tour Championship in order to be able to select the “hot hand,” Love certainly gets that in Moore. Since the PGA Championship, Moore ranks first on tour in score in relation to par, first in birdies and eagles and first in rounds in the 60s. His total of 57 under since the PGA is also seven strokes better than any other player.
Though he has never played in a Ryder Cup, Moore boasts an impressive match play resume, having won an NCAA individual title, the U.S. Amateur Public Links, the U.S. Amateur and finished fifth at this year’s WGC-Match Play.
He also has five career wins and a strong short game, ranking 41st this season in strokes gained/putting and 27th in strokes gained/around the green prior to this week. Moore finished the season with top 10s in four of his last six starts, including a victory at the John Deere Classic.
“You look at his match play record in amateur golf as well and some of the stuff he's done and he's accomplished, I mean, he's a great player,” McIlroy said. “He doesn't quite have the length that some of us do, but he definitely makes up for it in different areas of his game. I was really impressed with him today.”