Who Is Patrick Cantlay's Caddie?

Get to know Patrick Cantlay's caddie, Joe LaCava, a little bit better here

Joe LaCava and Patrick Cantlay eye up a putt
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Joe LaCava has been on the bag for Patrick Cantlay since May 2023, with the pair joining up together at the Wells Fargo Championship. Now on the American's bag full-time, the duo have previously worked together at the 2021 Northern Trust, with LaCava joining Cantlay after the 31-year-old split with long time caddie, Matt Minister, after the 2023 Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

If LaCava is a recognizable name to some, it is likely due to the fact that he used to caddie for Tiger Woods, specifically from 2011 until the pair split in mid-2023. What's more, LaCava was, in fact, on the bag when Woods claimed the most recent of his 15 Major wins at the 2019 Masters. 

Joe LaCava and Patrick Cantlay during the BMW Championship

LaCava and Cantlay during the final round of the BMW Championship

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Previously, Cantlay had been working with Minister for the majority of his career, with the pair playing collegiate golf at Ohio State University. Minister remains quite the golfer now as his handicap is currently 2, with the American on the bag for Cantlay during his The Memorial Tournament win in 2019, as well as the Ryder Cup in 2021.

In May 2023, LaCava joined the Cantlay team full-time, with the pair already securing a number of top-10 finishes. At the PGA Championship, the American finished in a tie for ninth, with Cantlay losing a playoff to Lucas Glover at the FedEx St. Jude Championship in August.

However, LaCava is best known for his time with World Golf Hall of Famer, Woods, and in fact asked Woods for his approval before signing on the line with Cantlay. 

According to Woods' agent, Mark Steinberg: "Joe called Tiger to ask him and get his approval. Of course, Tiger gave it. Tiger and Joe are like brothers, tremendous friends. You shouldn't read anything more in to that other than Joe wants to caddie. He loves it. It's his passion. He's great at it and one of the best."

Woods and LaCava celebrate on the 18th green

Woods and LaCava at the 2019 Masters

(Image credit: Getty Images)

A legend in the caddying game, LaCava made his name as a caddie while working for Fred Couples in the 90s and early 2000s. In fact, he spent 20 years working for the 1992 Masters Champion and helped Couples win a total of 12 events. The two split when Couples told LaCava to go and work for a younger player.

In addition to working for Couples, LaCava had a four-year spell with Dustin Johnson that saw Johnson rise steadily through the ranks, before LaCava joined Woods in 2011. From that time, he remained loyal to the 15-time Major winner, even when Woods spent long periods out with chronic back and other injuries. 

Along with Couples, Johnson and Woods, LaCava also worked alongside Nelly Korda at the Cognizant Founders Cup on the LPGA Tour in May 2023.

Matt Cradock
Staff Writer

Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.

Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.

Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?

Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°

Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°

Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°

Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°

Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x