What to expect in 2013: No. 5, Bubba Watson

Since the Mayans were wrong, it appears the 2013 PGA Tour season will actually happen. There are plenty of big names set to make some noise in the upcoming season (the year kicks off on January 4th!), so we've picked our ten guys we think will have huge impacts next season and preview them here. We continue with the Masters champ, Bubba Watson.

Bubba Watson

Age: 34

Career PGA Tour wins: 4

Career major wins: 1

What he did in 2012: Watson entire body of work in 2012 was pretty impressive, but when you look back on his season, it will likely be remembered for one shot — that being the gap-wedge slinger he produced from the pine straw on the second playoff hole at the Masters. The incredible shot earned Watson his first major championship and ensured that no matter how the rest of the season went, 2012 would be considered a huge success.

The green jacket defined his season; however, if you dig a little deeper, you'll notice Watson also had one of the most consistent years on tour, which is something he seemed to lack in years past. Watson only played in 19 events in 2012 — a number that likely diminished following the adoption of his newborn son, Caleb, and the Masters win — and only missed three cuts. But in the 16 events where he made the weekend, he never finished outside the top 25 and posted two runner-up finishes.

He also finished the season ranked 1st on tour in driving distance and 2nd in greens in regulation — two stats that usually lead to big paychecks and major hardware. Throw in a solid individual showing at the Ryder Cup and you're looking at a banner year for the lefty bomber.

Why we like him in 2013: Winning a major and posting top 25s in bunches is reason enough to like Bubba's chances in 2013. There's always a chance he could suffer a post-major letdown, but based on the way life is going at the moment — he's loving life as a dad and seems to be in complete control of his game — you have to think there's a better chance Watson keeps the good times rolling and doesn't regress. With the exception of the Masters, I'm not sure there's a major course that really suits his game this year, but knowing Watson, he'll probably still find a way to get into contention. Look for him to pick up at least one win in 2013 and come close to replicating his stellar 2012.

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