PGA Tour: John Deere Tractor Boys: Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 10 Aug 2016, 3:40 pm

First topic message reminder :

1).A surprisingly good field last week, for The Travelers Championship in Hartford, but a real shocker this week in the Quad Cities (of Iowa/Illinois) for the John Deere Classic. Disappointing.

2).Some thoughts after two days, and walking 78 holes, at The Travelers. Great weather Thursday & Friday, small crowds Thursday, but obviously Connecticut works a 4-day week as Friday it was packed:

Unless you're playing well, Tour Golf is a grind; perhaps there's much more on the line (FedEx status, Ryder Cup pts, having a card for next year, you name it) in August than the previous mid-June date but there was not much joie de vivre out there for most of the guys we followed.

3).We followed Lowry for 14 Friday holes, until he pretty much bagged his round. Loved watching his driving and iron-play, but his short game was only so-so and putting (a 15-footer apart) was miserable as we saw him turn an easy 67 into a 71 and an early flight home. Fun to follow though.
Also followed Leishman for most of his round; as for Lowry, plays lots of shots, works his ball and really spanks his drives - great to see that ball-striking, but doesn't "give" the spectators much.

4).Had never watched more than a hole or two of any of Luke Donald, Branden Grace or JB Holmes and they were grouped together.
All missed the cut and, apart from some fun between Grace and Donald at the start of their round, they were not great to watch. Grace seemed to be going through the motions and no idea why JB bothered to turn up; perhaps DLIII had told him, "Play your way into the Ryder Cup automatic places or you're not going, cos I'm not picking you."? Luke played well enough tee-to-green but his short game was shockingly poor, chipping, putting, you name it. Plus, not sure he gets on well with his caddie so wouldn't be surprised to see another change there.

5).Watched a few holes of DeChambeau who hits it surprisingly long, but he wasn't playing well and seems a bit too self-absorbed to be entertaining. DeChambeau has exhausted all his free passes so had to enter Monday Qualifying for this week's John Deere Classic and he came up short. Presumably he'll try again next Monday in Greensboro. Good result there or it's the web.com Finals for Bryson baby.
Missed Tyrrell Hatton and only saw a few shots from Rahm and Kjeldsen.
Best group to follow was (don't laugh) Rickie Barnes, Carlos Ortiz and Martin Laird - all playing well and seeming to be enjoying themselves. Was also impressed by the few shots I saw Russell Henley hit. Plays fast and a great putter too.

6).Stupidest story of the week:
A PGA Tour official told us he was called in by James Hahn who wanted relief from his lie in a bunker, complaining it had been poorly raked. Idiot. Plus he's glacially slow.
Saddest story of the week:
Found meself walking behind Steve Foley and overhearing him say, "Whatever happens, he should be proud of the career he's had," to Kandi Mahan about Hunner. Hunner is rightly very popular in the Hartford community as is Harrington and it was great to see them both pitch to tap-in distance on their final hole to make the cut. They were grouped w/Cejka who grinds every shot but plays fast (lightning compared to Padraig of course). I bet he could tell some stories.

7).TPC River Highlands had a facelift since last summer and the place looked a picture. Some silly architectural cosmetics which I don't much care for, but surprised they didn't lengthen the few holes where there might be room. The course is almost completely enclosed by a McMansion-type, housing development, and space is very limited, but even so . . . . .. It plays 6,800 yards and at least three Par-4 tee-shots are so much downhill that it plays even shorter than its yardage. The only real defence is any wind and smallish greens so Furyk's 58, whilst remarkable, was not as surprising as if it had been shot at most other Tour courses. Well done to him though.

8).Not much to say about this week's stop at TPC Deere Run, site of Goydos's 59. There's a good chance of Friday's play being disrupted by storms and it's a little surprising that the Tour has not reduced the field size from 156 to 144. Saturday and Sunday could easily be the setting for more very low scoring.
With the Tour deserting most of the northern tier of the country, Tour Pros who have roots in the Mid-West and North-East tend to be very supportive/possessive of their home tournaments and the likes of Zach Johnson, Steve Stricker and Jerry Kelly (second week running for Jerry) have gone out of their way to show commitment to the Quad Cities event. Spieth won here in 2013 & 2015 but he's staying home which is a shame.

9).As quizzed on last week's thread, six golfers are in danger of missing the Play-Offs for the first time ever: Perez, Overton, Poults and Watney are all injured, Sabbatini's been taking a sabbatical but is here this week (and in the Czech event next week, what's up with that?) as is Mahan. Only 16 Play-Off ever-presents left.

10).Will leave with two parting images from The Travelers as we left the course:
Thursday: Luke Donald and his caddie, alone on the range, as Luke hit shots, caddie videoed them, Luke analyzed 'em. It didn't do any good, regressed from a Round 1 to a Round 2 72. Take a break, Luke, You look fried. Paralysis by analysis.
Friday: Alone on the range. You-know-who was parked in his office beating balls in the twilight. Vijay Singh who shows the young ones a thing or two every time he plays.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 13 Aug 2016, 5:49 pm

Nations get short-changed because, during the Northern Hemisphere summer, most of their players compete in North America or Europe - if their players feel they're compromised between earning their livelihood and playing Olympics, most will choose to do their day job. Nothing about USA taking four, that's a whole other issue and I'd think it fairer if all inside the top 50 were eligible for four-man teams.

But Camilo, for instance, was emotionally and career-wise desperately torn. Unfairly in my opinion.

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Post by robopz on Sat 13 Aug 2016, 5:54 pm

Wow Bubba... can't say as I've ever seen a player"balk" on a putt... sheesh

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Post by robopz on Sat 13 Aug 2016, 6:05 pm

Kwini... I'm certainly sympathetic to Camilo's plight... but I'm also sympathetic to all the guys on the 125 bubble trying to keep their card.

It seems that Olympics or no Olympics... the same old harsh but true golf axiom applies... PLAY BETTER... and all their problems are solved.

But all that said... I do hope the powers that be can do a better job with scheduling in 2020 than they did this year. In 2020 the Olympics play 2 weeks earlier... so that opens up all kinds of options. It looks possible to keep the 1st 3 majors on their traditional schedule (by playing the Women before the men in the Olys)... then play the PGA a week or two later... and maybe take the "odd tournament out" and play it as an alternate to the OPEN instead of the Olympics. The other thing is good chance the playoffs will be only 3 events by that time... if that comes to pass, maybe there's even more flexibility in the schedule... or perhaps sacrifice the "off week" in the middle of the playoffs if it remains 4 events.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 13 Aug 2016, 6:15 pm

One thing's for sure, Hunner's conflicts are moot.
Last week he needed a birdie on his 36th hole and make the cut, pitched to within two feet to earn his pay.
This morning, a super four-under-par back-nine had him comfortably inside the cut-line with two holes to play including an arguably reachable Par-5. And foozled a 6 - 6 finish to get an early flight to Greensboro.
Hate to see things like that.

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Post by GPB on Sat 13 Aug 2016, 6:51 pm

Seung Yul Noh (119th on FEX and 124th on $$ list) WDed and now projected to lose his Exempt PGAT Card.

Camilo is probably too pre-occupied on keeping his physique at near 0% Body fat. Drink a milk-shake Camilo! Whatever you are doing is not working... so change it up.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 13 Aug 2016, 11:14 pm

Gonzo going like the Gonzo of old in Round 3 of the web.commer, a shot out of the lead midway thru the round.  Hopefully he won't revert to the Gonzo of new.

Script upside down at the JDC, Zach & Stricker in the middle of the pack.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sun 14 Aug 2016, 12:13 pm

A miracle Round 3 was completed yesterday, big thumbsup thumbsup to the Tour and the players for finishing.
Tee-times start in an hour with lots to play for, and for so many different reasons:
The win.
Top 125
Top 150
Top 200
. . . . . . each brings its own reward.

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Post by GPB on Sun 14 Aug 2016, 1:33 pm

If Stenson wins the Gold Medal, is he in serious contention with DJ and J-Day for PGATour PoY?

Or does he have to win one of the Playoff events?

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sun 14 Aug 2016, 2:21 pm

No!

About two play-off events might do it though.

Low scores will be the order of the day at the JDC - fine weather, soft golfcourse, lots to play for.
59 watch? Wouldn't be surprised.

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Post by GPB on Sun 14 Aug 2016, 9:34 pm

US Senior Open final round postponed until tomorrow.


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Post by GPB on Sun 14 Aug 2016, 10:35 pm

Robert Allenby arrested in casino after missing the cut at the John Deere classic.

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/allenby-arrested-casino-near-john-deere-classic

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Post by pedro on Sun 14 Aug 2016, 11:11 pm

GPB wrote:Robert Allenby arrested in casino after missing the cut at the John Deere classic.

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/allenby-arrested-casino-near-john-deere-classic
It isn't him. It's somebody using his ID.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sun 14 Aug 2016, 11:18 pm

it isn't him; it's Ryan Lochte . . . . . .

Fine win for Ryan Moore, and career saving for gents such as Ben Martin, Johnson Wagner and, hopefully, Blayne Barber.

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Post by GPB on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 12:21 am

kwinigolfer wrote:Fine win for Ryan Moore, and career saving for gents such as Ben Martin, Johnson Wagner and, hopefully, Blayne Barber.

Ben Martin had status for next year based on his 2014 win in the Shriners.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 1:30 am

I just find the Top 15 threshhold more than somewhat arbitrary.
But I suppose All's Well That Ends Well, as our favourite Willie has been wont to say.

Some good results from purely ET golfers who some would say, have said, are below web.com Tour level.

Seems everyone's content with the tournament, but not too churlish to have some quibbles, surely??!!

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Post by GPB on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 1:50 am

Huh?

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Post by McLaren on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 9:41 am

pedro wrote:
GPB wrote:Robert Allenby arrested in casino after missing the cut at the John Deere classic.

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/allenby-arrested-casino-near-john-deere-classic
It isn't him. It's somebody using his ID.


What happened? Was he just smashed and causing a bit of a nuisance?
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Post by Shotrock on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 12:03 pm

Nice win by Rose and good to see Kuchar adding to the medal count.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 12:57 pm

Sr,
Not mentioning any names, but aren't the US rather falling behind in the medalware count when measured by per capita? Huge advantage of course in relays, but somewhat disappointing in most individual events, surely?
Tried watching on Saturday evening. Brilliant performance in the Long Jump by your lad, but not a dicky bird about it on NBC, presumably shown much later on the ubiquitous tape delay.

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Post by Shotrock on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 1:40 pm

The US Swim squad fared a lot better than I would have anticipated.

As far as other sports, I'll leave it to the stat guys. Number of people living in a country and then the number who participate/compete in any given event are two different things. The US (like every country) has huge participation in swimming, golf, basketball, etc. but not so much in other areas.

If/when the US is the leading country for all medals I suspect you'll be a bit angry and find a way to blame Tim Finchem! Wink

(Pretty sure that's the name you want mentioned.)

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Post by pedro on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 2:24 pm

Speaking of Timmy. Saw him at the medal ceremony with O'Grady (hasn't he retired?) + a few other goons. Unlike at other occasions he actually looked like he had a good time.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 2:47 pm

Sr,
Just thinking that, once you add up all the amount spent on college scholarships on some of these sports, plus the amount of individual sports funding, there will have to be a bit of soul-searching on whether money has been invested well.
In this case, nothing to do with Timmy F, who I also describe as a genius - for his membership!


Rickie Fowler, Reed, Snedeker and JB Holmes, and Shane Lowry, among those in the Greensboro field hoping to make their last-gasp Ryder Cup impression.

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Post by I'm never wrong on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 2:56 pm

pedro wrote:Speaking of Timmy. Saw him at the medal ceremony with O'Grady (hasn't he retired?) + a few other goons. Unlike at other occasions he actually looked like he had a good time.

O'Grady took up a "presidential" role to represent the ET at the Olympics. I also saw Peter Dawson there as well. Possibly representing the R & A's interests?

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Post by Shotrock on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 2:57 pm

This is an interesting read:

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2016/aug/15/brutal-but-effective-why-team-gb-is-winning-so-many-olympic-medals


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Post by 1GrumpyGolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 3:20 pm

Dawson was there as President of the International Golf Foundation/Federation

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Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 3:26 pm

Interesting read Sr, Thanks!, the Guardian is the best.

In many ways, though, it's just a diversion of public funding from City Council initiatives, public pools, cycle-tracks, tennis courts and certainly municipal golf courses (including Danny Willett's apparently).
PS: We used to use Buckley Pool, wonder if any similar size US City has four nicer, albeit old-fashioned, pools that UCA,NY. Hope the rising Downtown tide lifts those four "boats".

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Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 3:42 pm

Hadn't spotted that Tyrrell Hatton was also in the Greensboro field.

As is Robert Allenby, at least until Commish Finchy reads his morning papers. Looks like Allenby could have plenty of time to cool his jets and find his golf swing.
Curious fact - I walked nine holes of a golf tournament with a bloke from Dover who said he was Allenby's "lifestyle" coach. Not sure exactly what he was coaching, golf gone downhill, police profile skyrocketing.
That sniggering sound you can hear is from Anthony Kim.

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Post by GPB on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 6:51 pm

Good for Hatton, He needed to play the Wyndham to get his tour card.

Hatton is the equivalent of 128th on the PGATour money with $674K. He probably needs a Top 15 finish to secure his card via the money list. Top 25 might do it. He is about 25K behind #125

Solo 15th is 100K which would put him at 774K (#117 this week)
Solo 25th is 49K which would put him at 723K (#122).

========

and there is virtually No way Tyrrel Hatton qualifies for the RC on merit by playing the Czech Open and Denmark as he is 43 pts behind Fitzpatrick. He would have to win both to pass Fitzpatrick. Playing Wyndham and Denmark gives him the best chance.

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Post by GPB on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 7:02 pm

No Laying Up did a Podcast with Ollie Schniederjans.

Talks about the Olympics, he transition from amateur to pro, his Web-season.

http://nolayingup.com/2016/08/15/nlu-podcast-episode-51-ollie-schniederjans/

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Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 8:15 pm

GPB,
Those podcasts are good aren't they?
I heard a Charlie Howell hour just before he was injured. Often quite funny, very insightful.

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Post by pedro on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 8:35 pm

Shotrock wrote:This is an interesting read:

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2016/aug/15/brutal-but-effective-why-team-gb-is-winning-so-many-olympic-medals

We suck at football, but hey we have canoe slalom and dressage!!

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Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 8:39 pm

We'll be OK with Big Sam though pedro; Cattermole, Defoe (could do worse mind, we HAVE done worse) and even Kevin Nolan being called up . . . . .

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Post by GPB on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 8:53 pm

Yes, Kwini, NLU has some good podcasts.  I really enjoyed the one from CH-III

Woosie looks like he is pushing 75 yrs old and recovering from a broken hip.  I am amazed he can still walk 18 holes.  A major outbreak of Swamp-Butt-itis has broken out at Scioto.

But he can still golf his ball.

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Post by GPB on Mon 15 Aug 2016, 11:11 pm

Gene Sauers, US Senior Open Champion.

Survivor of Stevens-Johnson syndrome, an insidious disease.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stevens%E2%80%93Johnson_syndrome


Edit: Diana Murphy with another mis-pronounced name.

"Francis D Minwet Memorial Trophy"

Pssst, Diana....it's WEE-Met...not Minwet

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Post by GPB on Tue 16 Aug 2016, 3:20 pm

Questioning how much Russell Knox wants to play the Ryder Cup. He is on 6.6 pts behind Fitzpatrick for the final spot which is the equivalent to a 10th place finish at Wyndham.

Perhaps D.C. has told him he has pick no matter what.

According P.D. only Hatton, Lowry, and Pieters have a mathematical chance of making the team

Pieters needs 45 pts and the only way to do it is to win both Czech Open (24 pts) and Denmark (28 pts)

Lowry needs 41.3 pts to (possibly) pass Fitzpatrick

a. Win Wyndham (46 pts)
b. Solo 2nd in Wyndham (27.6) + Solo 2nd Denmark (16.8)
c. Solo 4th in Wyndham (13.8) + Win Denmark (28 pts)

Many scenarios for Hatton to get the 33.5 pts to (possibly) pass Fitzpatrick. He can finish as low as 13th in Wyndham and still potentially pass Fitzpatrick by winning Denmark.

I think it is unlikely that any of these scenarios happen.


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Post by I'm never wrong on Tue 16 Aug 2016, 3:22 pm

Meanwhile, is Fitzpatrick playing in any events to further complicate things?

Edit - just seen that Matthew is playing Czech masters and Denmark.

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Post by GPB on Tue 16 Aug 2016, 3:50 pm

Only Reed, Snedeker, Fowler, Piercy and Haas can move into the Top 8 of the US RC standings.

Holmes Reed, Snedeker can virtually clinch a spot with a win or a solo 2nd.

Fowler can clinch a spot with a win only.

a win by Piercy and Haas could put them inside the top 8 but only if Holmes, Sneds, and Reed perform poorly. And it will put them no better than a bubble spot going into Barclays.


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Post by GPB on Tue 16 Aug 2016, 3:53 pm

I'm never wrong wrote:Meanwhile, is Fitzpatrick playing in any events to further complicate things?

Edit - just seen that Matthew is playing Czech masters and Denmark.

For sure he is playing to make it more complicated. Very Happy Theoretically Sullivan is in Jeopardy, but the Stars would have to align with a Perfect storm for that to happen.

GPB

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