Tiger Woods' top 10 streak at majors is in jeopardy

When will Tiger Woods return? (Getty Images)
When will Tiger Woods return? (Getty Images)

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You want a stunning Tiger Woods stat?

How about that he's never had a year as a professional where he finished outside the top 10 at all four majors.

That's right, since Woods turned pro in 1997 he's had at least one top 10 in one of the majors every single year. 

He did it his first year on tour when he smoked the Masters field. He did it in 2008 with the torn ACL and he even did it in 2011 when he missed two majors and was cut from another.

Here are the number of top 10s he's accumulated at the four majors since turning pro:

All four: Twice (2000, 2005)
Three: Six times (1998, 1999, 2002, 2006, 2007, 2009)
Two: Three times (2008, 2010, 2013)
One: Six times (1997, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2011, 2012)

That streak is definitely in jeopardy this year with Woods skipping the Masters and possibly both of the Opens. Of those six times he only racked up one top 10, three of them were at the Masters. 

He owns that place.

In case you were wondering, Arnold Palmer did it 16 straight years and Jack Nicklaus went on a 22-year run as a professional of finishing in the top 10 at least once in one of the four majors, from 1962 to 1983. It was incredible.

I mean look at this:

Obviously these numbers don't mean much when it comes to Tiger's chase for 18 but it's still a cool streak and I think it's something Tiger probably cares about.

Here are a few more interesting stats about Tiger missing this year's Masters:

• Since his pro career began in 1997 Woods has missed four majors. The winners in those were Padraig Harrington (twice), Rory McIlroy, and Darren Clarke. Graeme McDowell, come on down!

• The last time Woods missed the Masters, well, this happened:

• Maybe the most impressive stat of Jack Nicklaus' career is that he played in 154 straight majors in which he was eligible. 154! Woods played in 46 straight as a pro before missing the British Open in 2008. Now he has missed five of the last 21.

• Woods played in 17 straight Masters. The record is held by Arnold Palmer and the number is going to stun you: 50.

So when Woods tees it up later this year at one of the final three majors there will be more on the line than a win.

Longevity matters in this sport and when it comes to your legend and Tiger knows that. Which is why I think he'll extend that top 10 streak to 18 years later in 2014.

For more golf news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnGolf and @KylePorterCBS on Twitter or Google+ and like us on Facebook.

CBS Sports Writer

Kyle Porter began his sports writing career with CBS Sports in 2012. He covers golf, writes poetry about Rory McIlroy's swing, stays ready on Tiger watch and loves the Masters more than anyone you know.... Full Bio

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