The Memorial Tournament Injury News & Player Notes

May 30th 2023

Nick DeMott

This column will provide any field updates, injury news, and other player notes in the days leading up to the Memorial Tournament.

  • Field Changes (-): Maverick McNealy withdrew over the weekend.

  • Field Changes (+): Mark Hubbard replaced McNealy in the field over the weekend.

  • Field Changes (-): Taylor Moore withdrew on Monday.

  • Field Changes (+): Aaron Rai replaced Moore in the field on Monday.

  • Sam Bennett is in this week's field by winning last year's U.S. am.

  • Chris Gotterup is in this week's field by winning last year's College Player of the Year honors.

  • Alternates List: Tyson Alexander, Russell Knox, Ben Martin, Callum Tarren, Nate Lashley, Michael Kim, Tyler Duncan, C.T. Pan.

  • 19 of the OWGR Top-25 are in the field.

  • 38 of the OWGR Top-50 are in the field.

INJURY REPORT (as of 10am ET, 5/30):

Jordan Spieth (wrist) -- IN

Spieth is currently in the field for this week's Memorial Tournament after missing the cut at the Charles Schwab Challenge for the first time in his career.

Following his final round at the PGA Championship on May 21st, Spieth said he still planned to play in both the Charles Schwab Challenge and the Memorial Tournament despite a wrist injury that put his status in serious doubt at Oak Hill two weeks ago. According to Spieth, the injury has been healing very fast and considers it nothing major.

All things considered, Spieth played surprisingly well at the PGA Championship. His scores got better as the week went on (73-72-71-69) and Spieth ultimately finished T29 for the event. Spieth played the entire week with his wrist wrapped and KT tape down his forearm.

Throughout the PGA Championship, Spieth expressed that he was having no issues with his regular golf swing and swinging at full speed. This was a quote after R3 on May 20th:

"My normal swings, it's not an issue. It's just when you start getting bunker lips and stuff like that, and you've got to really flick under a flop shot or a bunker shot, I had that today where I just don't have the confidence in it not making it worse, so I just bail a little bit. I probably cost myself a few shots on that. But coming in, I kind of figured that might be the cast."

All that said, Spieth missing the cut at Colonial Country Club last week was concerning considering how much he's dominated at that venue in his career. His health status is one to monitor in the days leading up to this week's Memorial Tournament.

Hideki Matsuyama (neck, wrists) -- IN

Matsuyama's neck injury continues to be an issue to monitor week-to-week and any time he tees it up in an event.

According to a statement from PGA Tour Communications on April 28th, Matsuyama returned home to Japan after The Masters in order to receive treatment for his neck. However, according to the statement, Matsuyama's neck had not improved enough for him to compete at Quail Hollow.

Matsuyama ultimately returned to action at the AT&T Byron Nelson (May 11th-14th) after missing the Wells Fargo Championship due to a neck injury that he's been trying to manage throughout this season. He finished T23 after shooting a final round 66 (-5) at TPC Craig Ranch.

In Matsuyama's most recent start at the PGA Championship (May 18th-21st) he finished T29.

Matsuyama has dealt with this neck issue intermittently for the past two seasons. It will continue to be something to monitor whenever Matsuyama tees it up in an event on the PGA Tour.

Additionally, Matsuyama appears to be dealing with some sort of wrist issue as well. This news is being translated from Japanese golf media, and so it's tricky to know the exact severity. Matsuyama seemed to manage it just fine at Byron Nelson, shooting 67 or better in three of his four rounds. He gained 5.34 strokes on approach but lost 1.38 strokes off-the-tee.

Brandt Snedeker (undisclosed) -- IN

Snedeker is returning this week at the Memorial Tournament after being out with an undisclosed injury since last September. His most recent start came at the 2022 Fortinet Championship where Snedeker finished T59. Snedeker has four starts remaining on a minor medical extension. The 42-year-old must earn enough points over those four starts in order to regain status on the PGA Tour.

Peter Malnati (back) -- IN

Malnati finished T29 at last week's Charles Schwab Challenge in his first start back since missing about a month due to a back injury. He'll tee it up for the second week in a row at Muirfield Village.

Andrew Putnam (back) -- IN

Putnam finished T29 at last week's Charles Schwab Challenge in his second start back since returning from a back injury that sidelined him for three weeks. He'll tee it up for the third week in a row at the Memorial Tournament.

Lanto Griffin (undisclosed) -- IN

Griffin is expected to return this week at the Memorial Tournament after withdrawing from the AT&T Byron Nelson on May 8th, a few days before the start of the event. He has not played since deciding to WD from Byron Nelson for an undisclosed reason.

Tiger Woods (ankle, foot) -- OUT

Woods announced on April 19th that he underwent a subtalar fusion procedure to address his post-traumatic arthritis from a previous talus fracture. He is currently recovering and looks forward to beginning his rehabilitation.

The 15-time major champion withdrew in his most recent start at The Masters, citing a reaggravation of his plantar fasciitis after being seen walking with a noticeably worse limp during the third round. In February, Woods expressed his goal to play in all of the major championships this year. However, given this news of another ankle surgery and upcoming rehab, expectations should be tempered for Woods' chances at playing in the next three majors.

May 22nd update: Woods officially withdrew from the U.S. Open on Monday, and there's currently no official timetable for his return.

Will Zalatoris (back) -- OUT FOR SEASON

Zalatoris announced on his Instagram account on April 10th that he underwent successful surgery on his back and will now miss the rest of the season.

Zalatoris withdrew just prior to his first-round tee time at The Masters. As it turns out, Zalatoris was dealing with the same back issues (herniated discs) that caused him to be out for the last four months of 2022. Zalatoris has had a very promising start to his career, winning his first PGA Tour event last summer at the FedEx St. Jude Championship, but will now miss at least another five months following a microdiscectomy.

I've seen some confusion out there–this is the first time Zalatoris had back surgery. He did NOT have surgery in 2022 for this issue.

May 22nd update: Zalatoris announced on the ESPN broadcast during last week's PGA Championship that he feels pain-free for the first time in two years following back surgery. He's targeting a September return to the PGA Tour.

Daniel Berger (back) -- OUT

Berger remains sidelined from a back injury that has kept him out since the 2022 U.S. Open. The most recent update suggested he could return sometime in May but that is looking less likely as the month comes to an end. Berger tried to play through this injury last season but said “that was definitely not the answer.” Instead, Berger has opted to take a more patient approach in his recovery.


This article from AP News provides background and insight into the back injury Berger has been dealing with for the past year. In the article, Berger notes that it's not a career-ending injury but knows it'll be a challenge to get back to where he was as a top player in the world.

Berger has been posting clips on his Instagram account of him swinging a golf club, suggesting that his return could come soon though there is no official date or tournament that he's committed to yet.

Jhonattan Vegas (elbow) -- OUT

Vegas announced on his personal Twitter account on April 27th that he suffered an elbow injury related to the one that plagued him last year. He underwent surgery in April of 2022, and then later in the year Vegas opted to take the entire Fall portion of the PGA Tour schedule off due to this recurrent injury.

The 38-year-old has not played in a PGA Tour event since the Valspar Championship last month. Vegas said the recovery is taking longer than he expected but is working hard to return as soon as possible.

Kevin Yu (knee) -- OUT

Yu underwent surgery on February 20th for a torn meniscus, which will sideline him for an unknown amount of time.

The rookie was having an excellent first season on the PGA Tour with seven made cuts in 10 starts, one top-5 finish, and two top-10 finishes. In his last start before the injury, Yu finished T7 at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

Erik Barnes (knee) -- OUT

Barnes underwent knee surgery on April 3rd and is without a timetable for his return to the PGA Tour.

The 35-year-old rookie posted on Twitter that he was having reconstructive surgery on his MPFL and a repair of his MCL. Barnes said he's battled knee subluxation issues for the last couple of years which have worsened over the past few weeks. According to Barnes' social media post, the surgery was successful but he expects a long road in his recovery and eventual return to the PGA Tour.

John Huh (elbow tendinitis) -- OUT

Huh has yet to play in an event in 2023 due to elbow tendinitis. His last start came at The RSM Classic (November 20th, 2022).

Philip Knowles (hand) -- OUT

Knowles announced on his Instagram account on May 1st that he severed a nerve in his thumb on February 1st, underwent surgery on February 24th, and started swinging a golf club again on April 14th.

He noted that (as of May 1st) he's nearly back to full function but "range of motion is limited due to scar tissue" and "lack of sensation in the outside part of my thumb."

Knowles is currently without a timeline for returning to the PGA Tour.

Other Player News:

Jason Dufner (personal) -- IN

Dufner returns after missing the PGA Championship due to the expected birth of his first child. The 2017 Memorial Tournament champion is expected to tee it up this week at Muirfield Village, though he has missed the cut in each of his last four starts on the PGA Tour.

Keith Mitchell -- IN

Mitchell is returning for the Memorial Tournament after deciding to take a week off and not play the Charles Schwab Challenge.

Taylor Montgomery -- IN

Montgomery is returning for the Memorial Tournament after deciding to take a week off and not play the Charles Schwab Challenge.

Adam Svensson -- IN

Svensson is listed in the field for this week's Memorial Tournament after withdrawing from the Charles Schwab Challenge three days before the start of the event last week. The Canadian golfer finished T40 in his last start at the PGA Championship. While no reason was ever provided for Svensson's WD from Charles Schwab, it seems likely that he just decided to take the event off in order to rest following a challenging week at Oak Hill for the PGA Championship.

Max Homa (personal) -- OUT

Homa will miss this week's designated event as he plans to take the next two weeks off in order to attend his sister's wedding and also rest before the U.S. Open at L.A. Country Club. He finished T9 at last week's Charles Schwab Challenge.

Maverick McNealy -- OUT

McNealy withdrew from the Memorial Tournament over the weekend without any reason given. He finished T52 at last week's Charles Schwab Challenge.

McNealy has struggled since returning from a shoulder injury in early March, missing three cuts in seven starts and finishing no better than T36. It's unclear if the shoulder is still bothering him or if he's just struggling to find form at the moment.

Taylor Moore -- OUT

Moore withdrew from the Memorial Tournament on Monday. No reason was given for Moore's decision to WD from the event. Moore missed the cut at last week's Charles Schwab Challenge and finished T72 the week prior to that at the PGA Championship.

His next chance to return to action on the PGA Tour will come next week at the RBC Canadian Open.

LIV Golf Player News:

Paul Casey (knee, toe) -- OUT

Casey withdrew from the PGA Championship on May 16th due to toe and knee injuries. He reaggravated pre-existing injuries after trying new golf shoes recently. He was also out for last week's LIV Washington DC event.

According to teammate Bryson DeCheambeau on May 24th, "His feet have been hurting him a little bit...He's in a place where he's recovering, and he'll be good in a couple weeks he told me, so no issues with that."

Martin Kaymer (wrist) -- IN

Kaymer withdrew from the PGA Championship on May 12th. After undergoing wrist surgery last November, Kaymer does not yet feel like he is ready to compete for 3 weeks in a row.

"I don't think I will be able to play 3 weeks in a row after the [offseason wrist] surgery...I'm playing good. It's just a matter of I would like to go there with the mindset of I can actually win the golf tournament. I don't have that yet. I have not been practicing at all for the last six months. I've only been putting and chipping and I only hit golf shots during the tournament. So that is not enough to beat the best player in the world."

Kaymer returned at last week's LIV Washington DC event and finished 25th.

Lee Westwood (knee) -- IN

Westwood withdrew prior to the final round of LIV Tulsa on May 14th due to a medial ligament strain that occurred while running on a treadmill before round two. He said on Twitter on Monday that he feels "good and ready" for LIV DC after rehabbing his injury for the past week.

Westwood returned at LIV DC and finished 36th.

Jason Kokrak (undisclosed) -- OUT

Kokrak withdrew prior to the second round of LIV Washington DC with an undisclosed injury.

Thomas Pieters (undisclosed) -- OUT

Pieters withdrew prior to the third round of LIV Washington DC with an undisclosed injury.

Matthew Wolff (undisclosed) -- OUT

Wolff withdrew prior to the third round of LIV Washington DC with an undisclosed injury.

Hudson Swafford (hip) -- OUT

Swafford underwent surgery on February 20th with the expectation that he would miss 4-6 months. He was seen swinging on the driving range in an Instagram post on May 4th.

Sam Horsfield (hip) -- OUT

Horsfield underwent surgery on May 10th and is expected to miss "a few months" according to a post on his Twitter account.

Bryson DeChambeau -- IN

DeChambeau's game appears to be trending in the right direction after hiring Greg Bodine (former caddie for Tony Finau from 2014-2020). Their partnership began at LIV Tulsa where DeChambeau finished in 7th place and then continued into the PGA Championship where he finished T4. DeCheambeau added a 10th place finish at last week's DC event.