Phil Mickelson is all the way back. And with his final round charge to win the 2011 Shell Houston Open, it's clear that Lefty is rounding into form just in time for golf's first major of 2011.
Mickelson began his fourth round with bogeys on the second and third holes, but rallied with five straight birdies beginning at the ninth and maintained his lead heading in for a final round 65 and the Houston Open's winning score at 20-under 268.
Mickelson won by three shots over Scott Verplank and Chris Kirk.
Mickelson's win is his 39th on the PGA Tour, and likely makes him the favorite heading into The Masters, where he is the defending champion. Golf's first major of the year tees off on Thursday at Augusta National.
The victory also moves him past Tiger Woods in the World Golf Rankings. Woods didn't play in the event, and hasn't won a PGA Tour event since 2009.
If this is the moment when Mickelson has finally wrested the mantle of best golfer in the world from Woods, a Masters win next weekend would announce to the world that the mercurial southpaw isn't about to let it go.