Data Visualizations

April 1, 2017

Here is our crack at comparing players across generations in golf. The “All-Time Performance Index (ATPI)” reflects how many strokes better per round a player is than the average Tour player in 2000. Check out our full post here for more details on how this is constructed and additional discussion.

Below are the two main graphs from the analysis. The first shows how the Tour average ATPI has changed, and the second drills down to the player level and displays career ATPI evolutions.

Source: PGA Tour Shotlink
Tools: R, D3.js


Jan 23, 2017

Below is a timeline for the final round of the Farmers Insurance Open. This gives fans the unique ability to look back on an event and see how it played out in real time (as opposed to hole by hole comparisons).

The user can hover over the legend circles to get clarification on where that player lies in the figure, and/or can hover over a line to reveal the corresponding player from the legend...Enjoy!

Source: PGA Tour Shotlink
Tools: R, D3.js


Jan 17, 2017

The following figure displays the "Performance Ratio (PR)"  for players on the PGA Tour under the age of 26. The ratio is calculated as follows:

For example, if 10% of the Tour is under the age of 26, and 8% of all Top 10s went to players under 26, then the PR for that year = 8% / 10% = 0.8. Obviously a PR above 1 means that young players top 10'd more than their fair share of times, where a PR below 1 means the opposite.

Since Tiger had such a large influence on this figure (the Tour was young when he was 25 and under), we also provide an option to exclude him, which interestingly changes the conclusions from the graph.

For the full analysis, check out our blog post.

Source: PGA Tour Shotlink
Tools: R, D3.js


Jan 10, 2016

The idea of a "hot-hand" in sports is that an athlete tends to perform better following good performances than poor performances. In the context of golf, I define a player's hot-hand as the difference in their average score on holes following birdies on previous holes and their average score on holes following bogies on previous holes.

The following interactive table provides two measures for the hot-hand on the PGA Tour in 2016. Measure 1 is the difference in a player's average score on holes following a birdie or better versus holes that followed a bogey or worse; Measure 2 is the difference in a player's average score following two consecutive birdies or better versus two consecutive bogies or worse. (Therefore, a negative difference indicates better performance on holes that followed birdies). The overall ranking is the sum of a player's ranking in each measure. To sort the table based off of a specific measure, click on the column header.

Scores have been adjusted for hole difficulty. Further, there is a very interesting bias that arises in this context, as well as any other context where you are analyzing patterns in sequential data. It is discussed at length in this blog post.

Source: PGA Tour Shotlink
Tools: D3.js


Dec 25, 2016
The following visualization interactively reveals the evolution of driving distance on the PGA Tour since 1983. The height of each bar represents the percentage of players falling within the corresponding bin. Click anywhere on the histogram to transition into the next year.

Source: PGA Tour Shotlink 2016
Tools: R, D3.js


Dec 10, 2016

Below is a plot of Tour Wins vs Tour Starts. You can see how many wins a player had against his starts at any point in his career by hovering along the line of the player you are interested in. This really puts in perspective how much better Tiger was (is??) than any of his peers. Click on players in the legend to add/remove them to get a better view of the non-Tiger region of the plot.

Source: PGA TOUR Shotlink
Tools: R, Plotly