NORTON, Mass. -- Phil Mickelson shot his best round of the year on Monday, an 8-under-par 63 at TPC Boston that, if nothing else, should help erase any doubts about him being an at-large pick for the Ryder Cup.
Mickelson, 48, had his best round since the opening 63 at the 2016 Open, where he finished runner-up to Henrik Stenson at Royal Troon.
After making the 36-hole cut in the Dell Technologies Championship, Mickelson moved well up the leaderboard and finished at 274, 10 under. A top-10 would be his first since finishing fifth at the Wells Fargo Championship in May.
"It feels really good to put it all together,'' said Mickelson, who had nine birdies and a bogey. "I feel like over the course of the last couple of months, I've been turning 65s and 66s into 71s and 72s. Today I was able to get off to a good start and maintain it.
"So fortunate also that it's the day before the Ryder Cup picks, although I don't feel that should be a bearing. I think you have to look at the big picture through the course of the year statistically, what you're looking for with that particular course or players. Not one round. But it certainly doesn't hurt.''
Mickelson has long been expected to be one of U.S. captain Jim Furyk's at-large picks, with three of those to be announced on Tuesday in Philadelphia. For the first time since Mickelson made a team in 1995, he has not done so by qualifying on points; it means he needs to rely on a pick.
This would be his 12th Ryder Cup appearance (he's also been on 12 U.S. Presidents Cup teams).
Mickelson also helped his chances in the FedEx Cup playoffs. He is projected to be ninth in the standings, and with a decent week at the BMW Championship next week, would be in position to win the overall title at the Tour Championship.
"I've got to take this momentum into Philadelphia,'' he said. "Play a good solid week, get in that top 5, so that if I'm able to come out on top it guarantees a win in the FedEx Cup. Next week is every bit as important."