PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

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PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 7:06 pm

1).Genesis? Conjures up images of Charterhouse lads selling England by the pound and lambs lying down on Broadway.
Or ancient fiction.
But, no, let there be light.
We're talking about LA'S historic "Open" being sponsored by a South Korean motor company - pity they couldn't have called it the Genesis LA Open though. Instead, it just sounds like a revival of the old Genny Open. RIP.

2).Whatever they call it, the quality of the course and field cannot be doubted, as good a field as we're likely to find this "regular" season on one of the Tour's elite courses, George Thomas's Par 71 Riviera CC. Southern California, and Los Angeles in particular, is scheduled for some of golf's premier events these next few years; apart from the Tour stops in San Diego and LA, we'll look forward to:
~US Open: 2021: Torrey Pines
~US Open: 2023: Los Angeles CC
~Walker Cup: 2017: Los Angeles CC
~US Amateur: 2017: Rivera

3).With the World Rankings, and especially the OWGR Top Ten, featuring an almost record Number of young players, the focus is increasingly on youth, but perhaps Riviera will demand experience as well. Bill Haas was the last player younger than 30 (and he was in his 30th year) to win here and he was making his 7th visit.
So: Will any upstart yute emulate the feats of Thomas (2), Swafford, Rahm, Matsuyama and Spieth so far this year and earn a 7th successive win this year for a 20-something.

4).Those 6 x young guns are climbing the World Rankings (well, Spieth will be climbing again) but age is no protector of continued status. Once a player starts plummeting down the rankings it usually demands a sustained string of good results to reverse trend and move back up the charts.
Some big plungers who started out 2017 in the top 200 and are headed south in a hurry include:
Senden's ranking has slid 30.9%
Harrington's: 30.4%
Karlberg: 28.7%
Chris Wood: 25.6%
Danny Lee: 25.4%
Honourable Mentions to: Donaldson (down 22.4%), Dubuisson (down 24.1%), both in free fall.
For the Kaufman fan club, he's down 23.5% which is nothing to get smylie about. He withdrew this week, complaining about poa annua greens and looking forward to being back on Bermuda.

5).For all the beauty of the Monterey Peninsula, the final round at Pebble Beach must have been as dreary an 18 holes' TV as we've watched in a long time; in such circumstances I reckon the TV commentators have a responsibility to do more than rhapsodise about the scenery, rabbit on about "celebrities" we've never heard of and offer endless analysis of Konica Minolta BizHub Swing Vision slo-mos. CBS can and should do better. Player interviews would be a good start.

6).Which takes nothing away from Jordan Spieth and the apparently effortless way he strolled to his 9th Tour win. And he's played well (4th, 12th, mc) enough at Riviera to suggest he has the course knowledge to win again.

7).One of the interesting aspects of Riviera are the two holes that open the front and back nines:
1st hole: About the easiest Par-5 on Tour with a scoring average of 4.2
10th hole: The iconic short Par-4 that remains a fine short hole but the green has got firmer, harder and more unforgiving to the extent that it can sometimes seem unfair. I thought there was a move afoot to re-do the green but I can't find anything to shed light on that. Well overdue if they haven't.

8).So: Who's here?
Top Tenners: Day, Dustin, Hideki, Spieth, Scott Thomas (not Kristin), Sergio, Reed.
Among course specialists are: Phil (2 wins), Bubba (2 wins) whilst Adam Scott has a win and 2 runners up, Dustin has runnered up twice and I like his chances this week after playing well at Pebble.

9).Europeans include:
Casey and Donald, both past runners up - but no European win since Faldo 20 years ago (and, yes, you can be sure we'll hear all about it) - Sergio, Harrington, Rose, Molinari, Lowry, McDowell and Kjeldsen (Soren needs some good results, and quick. Otherwise he might as well head back to Europe).
And Thomas Pieters who won the 2012 NCAA individual championship beating Cantlay, Rodgers and Justin Thomas, among others.
Albert Hammond was hashtagging "alternative facts" when he sang It Never Rains In Southern California, and we could be in for a dousing on Friday, perhaps showers other days; which will help approach shots to #10 at least.

10).Tiger Woods first played here 25 years ago (Q: "What do you think of Tiger Woods?" Sandy Lyle: "Dunno, never played it."). And he was going to celebrate with a return this week at a place he's never won as a Pro.
But he's withdrawn from the tournament, and withdrawn also from his twice rescheduled news conference.
Is this the end? No-one knows, but the days are surely numbered when he turns up and confidently(??) says he's only here to win the tournament.
Personal view is that he'd enjoy life a darn sight more if he just got well (perhaps find another doctor, diagnosis(??), this on's not working) and resigned himself to just playing for recreational enjoyment, whether at home or on Tour. He can play almost when and wherever he likes, why does he have to be so damn competitive?
Have fun Tiger; would have thought Arnold Palmer, among others, might have reminded you that it's only a game.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 8:09 pm

Good stuff as always Kwini, a Putting master class from Spieth last week specifically on Saturday, absolutely brilliant to watch him on the greens. There are not many players that look as confident on the greens as he does, most look like they are about to have a nervous breakdown. He still looks like a 14yo that thinks he should make everything. Should be a good week this week, great track with plenty of history. Local knowledge seems play a big part, DJ is a good shout!

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 8:49 pm

What does everyone think about Riviera 10th hole.

I think it is highly over-rated and there will be far too much discussion about it this week

The green is too shallow and has far too much slope in for its size. Its reachable, but not drive-able. The bunkers are too deep and getting in them is too much "rub of the green."

I think the green needs to be about 25% bigger and front bunker needs to be shallower and not as big, to give the golfer an opportunity to keep their ball on the green

As much praise at this hole gets, I would think it would be an easy hole to copy. As bulldozers and earth-movers could replicate the elevations fairly closely. AFAIK, no modern architect has copied it.

I also don't like the hole as a starting hole on split tees. Its a natural bottleneck and it would be better as the 15th or 16th hole in the tournament.

Just my opinion. Your mileage may vary.

Anyways, this is an interesting week, OWGR wise. J-Day has poor record in LA Dustin/Hideki can claim #1 by winning and J-Day performing badly.

Dustin will be #1 if he finishes 2nd and Day finishes outside the Top 10...but not until Feb 27th. Going into Mexico.

None of the #1 contenders are playing Honda at this time. I am surprised Stenson and Johnson are not playing Honda. Stenson, because he has been off a couple of weeks and Johnson because he lives down the road.


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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 9:17 pm

Wonderful write up per usual Kwin.

GPB - I agree with you. I think the green is just too small and quirky for just about any approach shot. Short par 4 holes can be wonderful (8th at Pine Valley, 7th at Merion), but this one seems to be over the top, especially when the pin is back (as I suspect it will be on Sunday).


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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 9:36 pm

Cheers Chaps,
See my note about #10; I thought they were going to re-do the green, make it more receptive and less like the M1; I don't mind it being small, but for it not to hold chip shots or bunker shots is absurd.
My fave short Par-4 on Tour is the 14th @ Quail Hollow; hope the changes to the course don't affect it.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 10:02 pm

Good point GPB, no. 10 (like all drivable par 4's really) is described as a classic "Risk and Reward" hole, but in reality it's more along the lines of risk and punishment, if you try and drive it that is. The 2016 stats suggest that there were only 3 eagles over the entire week while there were 9 doubles. It's too shallow a green to stop a drive on and have a putt for eagle imo. A good write up on it (From PGATour website) here - http://bit.ly/2liYtIh

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 10:20 pm

Not sure I agree; anyone thinking they could stop the ball on the green would be certifiable, but the front pin-placement invites the tee shot, and that's the only place on the green to aim for wherever the hole is cut. Bunkers can be almost impossible, so not much value in aiming for them.
But, a little tweaking of the green and it'll be a good hole again.
Though, as GPB rightly says, not a #10! (Arsenal also lacking a #10 tonight, plus 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11.)

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by McLaren on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 10:20 pm

Re point 5), What sort of extra content would you like to see on the TV coverage, are we talking ken on the course type content or more discussion about the game in general rather than just describing what is happening on course?


As for the 10th, it is probably overrated but having not played it I can't quite decide how it would play for us normal folks. It is different to a lot of the identikit holes we often see on tour so why not just enjoy the pro's tacking a slightly different challenge. Whether it is a truly great short par 4 doesn't matter if at least gets a conversation about good architecture going. It isn't often that a PGA tour course has a hole worth talking about (unless there is a batshit pin position), and this week we get 18.
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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by McLaren on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 10:22 pm

kwini

Arsenal were an utter disgrace, lets hope they can carry that form over into the league. (And maybe Koscielny would fancy a switch to Man Utd in the summer)
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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by McLaren on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 10:34 pm

Something that I meant to mention last week that has still not been picked up on this site (as far as I can tell) is the WD from Els last week. He withdrew from the at&t with a neck injury.

Fair enough, but he managed to tee it up with Trump and Abe just a few days later. The PGAT must know some players WD with dubious injuries but for Els to so blatantly pull that trick and tee it up with Trump seems pretty low.
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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 10:56 pm

I doubt even Patrick Rodgers will be able to land it on the 10th green and keep it there, even with the altitude he can get on it. He's the only one I can think of with a chance.

But... if you are playing the percentages, then what advantage do you have with a chip from just off the front edge v's a pitch from between 60-100yds. In both circumstances they are realistically trying to get down in two. So lets expect 90% of play down the left with a hybrid and a pitch on.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 10:58 pm

Mac,
I mentioned interviews, it's always interesting when they bring one of them (and I don't mean C.Eastwood) into the booth. I watched most of it but DJ was the only interview I saw - plus, it was boring anyway, all the more reason to show more of the pros and less of the ams. But the TV people are paid to provide entertainment, not me, and I reckon they failed.

I'd seen an Els explanation for his w/d but it's not on his blog and not sure where it would have been.
But he DID mention Dave Musgrove's death in his blog, and hadn't heard that, glad that he mentioned it.

Sutton vs the Arse coming up, never mind the Prem.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by McLaren on Wed 15 Feb 2017, 11:12 pm

Just noticed that G-mac, Anika, Peter Jacobson and Curtis strange are going to be the new hosts of the APinv. Might not be a bad idea to prevent the slide seen in other events when the host has died.
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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 12:01 am

"The Strange Invitational Hosted by the Fat Accountant"? Why not. Maybe John Daly will turn up.

Watched the "interview" with Clint Eastwood. Well, he hardly said a word. Then why bother.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 12:20 am

Tiger canceling his own presser? My glute. He's probably just tired of hearing himself saying the same old crap. They can rerun any of his last 10 pressers and nobody would tell the difference.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 1:24 pm

All right you guys, rise and shine . . . .
Wake up!

Sure Davie will recognize the (only) lyrics of Reveille Rock and it'll be reveille before crack of dawn (no comments about B_t_b's Mabel) as first balls should be in the air at 6.40 a.m., can't think of an earlier start on Tour.

Decent day in prospect for Riviera today, but a dismal forecast of possibly flooding rains for Friday. Hope it doesn't interfere with the tournament schedule, but Rivera is not the greatest draining course the Tour plays. Not a bad forecast for the weekend though and hopefully they'll complete 72 holes by Sunday evening.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 1:53 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:
Decent day in prospect for Riviera today, but a dismal forecast of possibly flooding rains for Friday.
It's the Genesis Open init?

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 2:16 pm

Are you suggesting they play in pairs, walk down fairways two-by-two pedro?


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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 3:04 pm

Interesting to see how Thomas Pieters plays this week!

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by McLaren on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 3:12 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:Are you suggesting they play in pairs, walk down fairways two-by-two pedro?


Dunno, but Tiger winning anything again currently seems less likely than a human rising from the dead.
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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by I'm never wrong on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 3:28 pm

Players being very tentative on the 10th at the moment.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 3:36 pm

I'm never wrong wrote:Players being very tentative on the 10th at the moment.

It looks as if Lahiri just missed the green en route to his birdie, while DeLaet seems to have been in a greenside bunker . . . . . and got down in four from there!

Not watching it, but the website makes it look as if play is at a dawdle.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 3:36 pm

She bought a book ya know, she's only on page 22 and i'm already knackered, but that's a story for a different day.....

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by I'm never wrong on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 3:40 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:Not watching it, but the website makes it look as if play is at a dawdle.
Fog is an issue. Horn just went off

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 3:45 pm

I'm never wrong wrote:
kwinigolfer wrote:Not watching it, but the website makes it look as if play is at a dawdle.
Fog is an issue. Horn just went off

Not fog, Marine Layer - sounds like (Mabel again).

Bl00dy California weather, if it's not drought, fires, landslides or floods, it's fog. Glad I'm here with my two feet of snow to p1ss and moan about.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 4:32 pm

Action!

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 7:57 pm

Promising starts from Luke Donald (-3 despite losing 1.5 strokes putting), Pieters, Rose, even Harrington and Casey.
Not too clever yet from Sergio.

Terrible forecast for Friday; even if it's just half as bad as the apocalyptic forecast I wouldn't be surprised if play was cancelled for the day without a ball being bowled. Very likely a 54-hole tournament in prospect.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 9:06 pm

Sneaky Luuukey, setting the week up nicely...

Adam with his aimpoint, I know what reception I'd get from my playing partners if I started all that jazz.

-6, -7 on the cards today?

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 9:12 pm

-4 for Padraig?!?! Whooo hooo!! Get in there!

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by super_realist on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 9:18 pm

Bowditch stinking the house out again. RedWine Whisky

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 9:24 pm

Paddy power . . . . . . .

Dismal from Sergio, terrible putting by the looks of it.

Surprised Bowditch is allowed to play; the Tour wouldn't look good if he went out on another bender; good job Allenby's in Australia. As it is, he'll just keeping on playing as if he has. Too bad.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by super_realist on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 9:34 pm

I would have though Bowditch would have at least been warned about his conduct and how it reflects upon the tour. If he hasn't been, just another example of how Golf lags behind other sports in regards to professionalism.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 9:34 pm

Sergio is hard to watch on the greens, basket case mentally. I don't think Bob Rotella has a couch big enough to fix that one. Thats what I meant about how free Spieth is and a joy to watch, poor Sergio is the opposite.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 9:54 pm

Great round from Paddy, he's been injured since the start of the season and he said that he's been struggling with his club head speed, maybe it's starting to get better.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 10:04 pm

Inspired pick Sirb, great stuff.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 10:13 pm

I pick him every week so I wouldn't call it inspired haha, loyal would be a better word

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 10:16 pm

I'd say he got a fine Super, the PGATour rarely publish disciplinary action.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 10:32 pm

Laugh your loyalty has been rewarded Sir!

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Thu 16 Feb 2017, 11:52 pm

Colt Knost out for the foreseeable future having surgery

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 1:01 am

Detox, or lap band?
Hadn't seen that, Thanks sirb. Knost was a reliable competitor on shorter courses. Not now. He'll probably be rehabbing with Anthony Kim.

Scores not quite as good this p.m. as in the morning, time for another 2 or 3 holes. Perhaps the field of 144 might be a dozen too many unless they can police pace of play a bit better?


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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 1:36 am

Speculation that Adam Scott might be on paternity leave for the WGC Mexico.
Wonder what the turn out will be? No zika virus concerns, but wouldn't be surprised to see a sick note or two handed in.
Thomas Detry making a last-minute attempt to qualify via R2D Top Ten.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by super_realist on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 8:24 am

sirbenson wrote:Colt Knost out for the foreseeable future having surgery

Gastric band?

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 9:04 am

super_realist wrote:
sirbenson wrote:Colt Knost out for the foreseeable future having surgery

Gastric band?
Start with a mouth band..

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 11:44 am

"Life-threatening rain looms in Southern California" says The Weather Channel.
Just possible they might get started this morning, with resumption of Round 1 scheduled for 7.00 a.m. (why not 6.40 a.m. when they started play Thursday?) but "heavy rain/wind" lurches into the forecast by noon, and they're expecting 4 - 6 inches over the next 24 hours. Can't see this being anything better than a 54-holer, perhaps even 36 holes. Too bad.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by McLaren on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 11:55 am

Maybe it is just because they stick in the mind, but it does some like there have been more weather effected events in the last few seasons.

Does anyone have any numbers which would show how often PGAT events are impacted by weather on a season by season basis?
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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 1:05 pm

Mac,
Wouldn't really agree, but the Tour plays with fire in its Coastal California events, staging their tournaments when the weather is typically at its worst - remember Adam Scott winning a 36-holer (in playoff w/Chad Campbell) a dozen years ago, while Pebble has been foreshortened a few times, resumed later in the year back in the late 90's! They shifted the MatchPlay from La Costa partly because of the weather.

If extreme weather events in the USA are becoming more prevalent with increasing impact of climate change, one can only be thankful that most (tho obviously not in California) of the destructive action occurs in those States where their Congressional representatives, by and large, are climate-change deniers. And there are now more of them in the "swamp" than ever, sleeping with coal and oil lobbyists.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 1:39 pm

You forgot to blame Dubya kwini..

pedro

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 1:50 pm

Oops, Sorry about that. He's done his fair share of damage, but not as much as his TX guv follower, Rick Perry is likely to do as Energy Secretary, a department he campaigned to abolish and with responsibility for the US's nuclear "assets" (which he didn't realise came with the job). Swamp overflowing.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 1:53 pm

I like you give people the benefit of the doubt. Not like any of the other bigots we have around here.

pedro

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 17 Feb 2017, 2:14 pm

And here's another thing!
If they know there's a season's worth of rain offshore, but they still hope to put on a credible event, why don't they start earlier?
Another head scratcher. And no benefit of any doubt.

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Re: PGA Tour: Golf in La La Land: Notes from the Ballwasher

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