|Dave Pelz looks on as Phil Mickelson practices for the Masters in '08. (Getty Images)|
If you kept up with golf in 2012, you probably noticed that there wasn't a lot of images of Phil Mickelson raising trophies. Lefty won just once on tour, at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in February, to go along with his one win in 2010 (he had three wins in '09). No worries, though, because his short-game coach thinks Mickelson's game is on the up-and-up. So much so, that he is predicting 2013 to be one of the 40-time PGA Tour winner's best seasons ever.
Dave Pelz sat down with Golf.com and mentioned that if Phil can trust his putting stroke for next season, it might just be the best year of his career.
"So his ballstriking is the best it's ever been and his short game is the best it's ever been. But his putting wasn't up to standard this year ... If he can get that next year better than it's ever been then he will have the best year of his career."
No offense to the great-minded Pelz but, sure, if his putting improved and is "better than it's ever been," then I'm sure Mickelson will have an incredible season, just like if Tiger Woods hits every fairway and if Rory McIlroy can just get to the first tee on time.
I'm not doubting the fact that Mickelson had a great end to his season or even that he finished 10th on tour in strokes gained from putting. But I do wonder if the 42-year-old Mickelson has the stamina, and health, to have a year like '05 (four wins and a major).
In Phil's last 10 major starts, he has just two top-10s. But Pelz said he thinks Phil's psoriatic arthritis is more under control and, if that's the case, watch out world -- especially if Phil can start dropping some putts and stop tinkering day in and day out on the putting green.