By Brendan Porath SB*Nation
While it's always ranked as the fourth major, many argue that the PGA Championship has the deepest field of any golf tournament all year. Here's your 2013 field.
The PGA Championship often gets short shrift when it comes to the majors, and it holds a consensus ranking as the fourth and least prestigious of the group. The season's final major takes a beating, but at least they've done away with the dopey "glory's last shot" slogan. Despite that lesser standing, it's often argued that the PGA has the deepest field of the PGA Tour season, with almost every top player in the world, and those in the best recent form, gobbling up invite.
It can be confusing, but the PGA Championship is run by the PGA of America, which is unaffiliated with the PGA Tour. One consists of the golf pros who give lessons and sell sweaters in the pro shop at local courses and clubs, while the other is dedicated to the weekly millionaire touring pros. They're all considered pros, but they're in a different stratosphere with separate organizations advocating on their behalf. The PGA Tour actually does not have control of or directly receive the profits from any of the four majors, or the Ryder Cup (the PGA of America's other marquee event).
With that distinction in mind, the PGA of America reserves 20 spots out of the 156 available for club pros. Unlike the two Opens, there is no local or sectional qualifying, but the PGA Professional National Championship, held each year in June does serve as a qualifying event for club pros. This year's event was at Sunriver in Oregon, with a bit of drama coming late as Rob LaBritz sank a 95-yard wedge shot in a playoff to earn one of the final spots in the field. ...more