Scottie Scheffler, a PGA Tour rookie from Texas, and Xander Schauffele also were at 5 under. The American's only other top 10 showing was a tie for ninth at the 2017 US Open.
DeChambeau's best finish in a major is a tie for 15th (expect to hear that frequently on the broadcast as well), and that result came in his first major start as a professional at the 2016 U.S. Open. "A big one is not only about playing well, but rather it is a mental examination", he pointed out before the little press present on the field.
"Last week is over with. He's got a little more length on there, and that's just so he can practice a little bit more without back pain", friend and fellow competitor Steve Stricker said after finishing Wednesday's practice round with Woods. Like Christmas morning we can expect plenty to be revealed and lots of surprises, so stay in your jogging trousers all day (novel idea, I know) and reserve your favourite spot on the couch. Whether they will be able to stand up to the likes of Justin Thomas, Brooks Koepka and Tiger Woods ... well, that remains to be seen.
Woods has a good feel for TPC Harding, where he has competed since college and also won a WGC in 2005. Only Hagen and Peter Thompson at the Open in 1956 have won the same major three times in a row in the modern era. It will not be easy for the former number one in the world, whose back operations complicate life in places like the TPC Harding Park, where temperatures will not exceed 20 degrees and where the environment is very humid.
In March, 14-time US Tour victor Scott took the family back to Australia for four months while golf was cancelled. He can also become the first player in history to win majors in four different decades.
"No matter what happened in the past you're going out there in any given week just trying to perform your best", said 33-year-old Lowry.
We won't know the... "We've been back playing on Tour for the last eight or nine weeks or whatever it is", McIlroy said. Atop world rankings, stars have plenty to prove.
The course will be the first in the western United States to host the PGA Championship since 1998 - when Vijay Singh won at Sahalee Country Club in Washington State - and the first in California for a quarter of a century. Rahm will play alongside Sergio Garcia and Phil Mickelson.
On my last night leading into Thursday's first round, I'll relax at the hotel, take a deep breath, visualize myself hoisting the Wanamaker Trophy on Sunday, go to sleep and try to visualize myself hitting that first fairway. "By Sunday though, I'm mentally drained".
Koepka would be the first player ever to win the PGA Championship three straight times in stroke play. He is three behind Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 Grand Slam victories.
"It's something that I really want", said Spieth, 27.
Johnson doesn't waste words, and he's probably right. I love to see how they handle situations, how they prepare.