PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

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PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 07 Jun 2017, 4:01 pm

First topic message reminder :

1).TPC Southwind, outside Memphis, is reportedly a strong test of golf and stages one of the older events on the PGA Tour, this week being the 60th playing of the FedEx St.Jude Classic.
But it's not just Elvis who won't be playing as most of the golfing elite have chosen to stay away. And many who had originally "committed" have withdrawn meaning that this week's field is sadly one of the season's weakest.

2).The Houston Open has been successful in providing an appropriate warm-up before The Masters each year, but has the advantage of preceding Augusta National, the same course every year. Not so much the week before the US Open which is obviously played on courses as diverse as Olympic Club and Oakmont, Pebble Beach and Pinehurst. Or Chambers Bay and Erin Hills.
All you can do is present a course that might help fine tune the "fairways and greens" ballstriker which the USGA seems to favour, and that is what TPC Southwind achieves, one of the most demanding Par-70's of the year as measured by scoring average - though that may be partly due to the uneven quality of the field.
After a string of champions here that varied from the length of Greg Norman to the precision of Nick Price success here was enjoyed by a succession of short hitters/good putters from Estes to Toms, Leonard to Maggert and Gay, but most recent winners have been bombers, guys like Frazar and Westwood, Dustin Johnson and Daniel Berger. More on Memphis later.

3).Congratulations to Jason Dufner for his Memorial win which managed to reward three excellent rounds to offset one shocker - apparently the first winner to follow a Round 3 as high as 77 with a win since Faldo at the '89 Masters.
I'm a Dufner fan, followed part of his 63 at the 2013 PGA which he went on to win, and have enjoyed watching him and his ball-striking since. Much is made of Dufner's putting, and his yippy stroke on shorties especially. But he's 48th overall in the "Strokes gained putting" stat, which means he's actually very efficient.

4).Strangely, that strokes gained putting stat is dominated by Europeans, albeit including one or two STM tourists:
1st: Hatton
2nd: Michael Thompson
3rd: Fitzpatrick, followed by Gonzo, Lukey, Fowler, Rafa, McDowell

5).Not the greatest Memorial Tournament for Europeans, no-one better than Lingmerth & Lowry who crossed the line tied for 15th. Definitely a step in the right direction for both, however, which is more than can be said for some. Kjeldsen shot 81 on Sunday and, especially with his withdrawal this week, looks perilously close to losing his card. While Donald and Rafa (is he knackered?), Rahm and Fleetwood all missed the cut. Terrible weekends from Knox and Laird but a decent finish (T22) from Ross Fisher who is playing much more consistently over here than during previous visits.

6).Perhaps it's worth looking again at the owgr "points gained" stats for the year:
First: Dustin Johnson still has a big lead that won't be overtaken whatever happens the next fortnight. Followed by:
Rahm, Garcia, Spieth, Fowler, Thomas, Kisner, Rose, Fleetwood, Matsuyama, Dufner, Hadwin, Noren, Harman.
All of that lot have at least 100 world ranking points so far in 2017.

7).A couple of notable obituaries from the last week:
~Roberto De Vicenzo, about which much has already been written. Worth noting, however, that he only played in 44 Majors, 22 of them Open Championships where he notched 11 Top Tens, including his 1967 win. All that despite having won his first Pro events as a teenager.

~Vincent Tshabalala, from Johannesburg, who won the French Open in 1976 when he was still barred from competing in his native South Africa because of apartheid. Like Charlie Owens (kinda surprised to learn he is still alive), Tshabalala played all his shots cross-handed.
(Owens, incidentally, and for better or for worse, was a (the?) leading pioneer of the belly putter.)

8).There are only a handful of golfers who can earn a place in the US Open by virtue of being in the owgr Top 60 after close of play this weekend, led by Chris Wood currently in 60th place. Scott Piercy needs a Top 20 to overtake Wood, but both could be eliminated if Poulter, McDowell or two or three others should win this week.
Only the USGA knows who's first among the "alternates" following "Sectional Qualifying" but a handful of spots should be open and hopefully Gregory Bourdy will score one of them.

9).Rickie Fowler goes again in Memphis this week, with Adam Scott and Francesco Molinari the only owgr top 20 players in action.
Other notable Europeans in the field include Cabrera Bello, Poults and McDowell.
Phil Mickelson has the best recent record here, albeit without a win; Daniel Berger won convincingly last year largely on the back of a brilliant week off the tee, long and mostly straight. No real idea this year but here's my best guess if Grumpy's game was running:
A).Mickelson, Koepka, Horschel
B).Palmer, Poults, Piercy (tho' what's become of Harris English, who won here in 2013 and looked a surefire star of the future?)
C).Chad Campbell, Greg Owen, Gay.

10).Lastly, and largely for the benefit of US posters who may not have seen it, and not nuffink to do with golf, but I loved this:
http://deadspin.com/Frak-you-im-millwall-londoner-says-he-took-on-bridg-1795871139

Never thought I'd see the day when I said I'm glad Millwall got promoted, but good luck and good health to Roy Larner  clap  clap  Ale  Ale  Ale  Ale or  Ale

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Sun 11 Jun 2017, 6:14 pm

Not getting any mentions at 606v2, The Palmer Cup is being played this week in Atlanta. It's a Ryder Cup style competition between American College Players against European College Players.

USA won Friday Foursomes 3.5 - 1.5
Europe won Friday Fourball 3.5 - 1.5
USA won Saturday Singles 9.5 - 0.5

And USA clinched the Win this morning. Two Americans won their singles matches today 8&7.

http://www.arnoldpalmercup.com/

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Sun 11 Jun 2017, 10:44 pm

It doesn't get televised over here GPB, as far as I'm aware anyway. Personally I don't know if I could take another "Ryder Cup" like event, we have the original and the Walker cup. I hope it doesn't have the "intensity" of the Ryder Cup.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Sun 11 Jun 2017, 11:13 pm

Thanks GPB ... what a singles trouncing.

Strange comments from FIGJAM today after his round. Meanwhile, Berger pockets a nice check and punches his ticket again for Augusta.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 12:37 am

All a bit anti-climactic in the end wasn't it?

Berger's an interesting character don't you think? Easy to pull against, but very very professional in how he closed things out.


The Palmer Cup is a good event isn't it; pity it's not more of an age-defined tournament as college attendance is pretty low on many European golfers' list of things to do after escaping from school. Turn pro young man!

Phil clearly shouldn't be looking at leaderboards . . . . . .

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 12:46 am

Guessing that Jon Rahm and Thomas Pieters are exceptions to the rule?  GMac and Luke prior to that?

I am trying to figure if Braden Thornberry was a Palmer Cup snub as he was one of the best college players, even before winning the NCAA singles.  He won 5 tournaments and had the lowest stroke average.

Fitzy apparently did not want to have anything to do with the extra-curricular activities that involved text books.

Not sure why Berger is easy to pull against.  Who wouldn't want to see his WAG rush onto the green.

Tori Slater:

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 1:18 am

Re Fitz: That's exactly what I mean.
Think Paratore is in his third year on Tour . . . . . . . .

Plus:
Guess Kevin Na might have a sense of humour after all.

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/na-gets-rough-us-open-rough



'Course, that fescue might have grown a couple of inches in the time it took Kev to try and play a shot.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 1:42 am

I think you are going to see more comments like Na and Wes Bryan's.

If it is anywhere close to being as bad as Bryan's and Na's videos then it is going to be a bigger joke than Chambers Bay's greens and Oakmont's green speeds.

This is not representative of the way golf is supposed to be played IMO.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 1:55 am

I wonder who has the more precarious hold on their job?
Theresa May?
or
Mike Davis?

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by I'm never wrong on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 7:16 am

GPB wrote:This is not representative of the way golf is supposed to be played IMO.

I was a member of a club that had rough like that when it opened - especially on the first hole. It didn't last long as people complained that it was taking people too long to find their balls and people were losing the enjoyment of golf. That length of rough is a recipe for even longer rounds.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 8:57 am

Thought it was grass on Na's head. He's not exactly tall..

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by puligny on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 9:09 am

How quick was Na with those two shots. New standard for him to live up to! Mind, best if he tries to hit down on the ball and not swish like and angry cat a foot behind where the ball lies!
Still does look quite penal!
Also would past US Open winners say "suck it up - I won on tough courses"

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by beninho on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 9:44 am

I have seen nothing about the course, but I read someone say that the rough is ridiculous, but the fairways are massive to counter it. is that confirmed?

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by puligny on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 11:24 am

Ben, there's a video clip a few posts above. Follows similar some time ago. It seems pros are queueing up to have a go. Does look crazy thick but difficult to put in context without seeing the whole course.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by beninho on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 11:31 am

I get that the rough seems ridiculous. But if the fairways are massive, then its should balance out? But the if its dry and fast running it could just come to luck of the bounce, which seems harsh.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 1:02 pm

Also not sure what make Berger unlikable. Has he spit in cups? Thrown his shoes? Moaned that he's the only golfer who get bad breaks? Funny first name?

Looking forward to the Erin Hills drama. I agree with GPB on this. And have always thought that if the blue blazers want an over par finish they should just call it a par 45 and problem solved.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 2:09 pm

Yup, Very "funny first name"! thumbsup

Berger has a very deliberate swing, almost one of a kind - I wonder if, subliminally or not, he gets it as a by-product of his father's serve? Always thought that, never seen anything said or written about it.

At least the first five US Open alternates are definitely in the field. Just haven't seen them officially named yet, except Dru Love is one and his Dad is caddying for him! Assume Bourdy is in.

Edit That!: Bourdy definitely in, together with Love, Ryan Palmer, Whee Kim and Tyler Light (who I know nothing about). web.com player Roberto Diaz is on deck waiting for Phil's almost certain withdrawal, but haven't seen the next "alternate" announced.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 3:57 pm

Epic rant from Kevin Na...apparently it's a course that guarantees wind, which will counter act the wide fairways

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 4:03 pm

Kwini:  Why is Berger easy to "pull against".

Because his swing is deliberate?  That's an odd reason!
Because his swing resembles a tennis serve?  Even stranger.

Certainly cannot because of his "Jesus Bothering"

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 4:16 pm

Nope, I just think he sometimes comes across as the sort of entitled student which I live in the middle of. Not anywhere near as much as when he started.

The swing thing is nothing to do with it, just something I found slightly odd, especially in the context of his father's service action which itself was quite unique.

Always amazed that I never get any comments about Americans I really like, just the occasional one or two that are not my favourites!


Ten day forecast for Milwaukee suggests 80-degree temps with chances of rain Thursday, Friday & Saturday, dry for Sunday, but with an ever-present chance of 10 mph breezes, perhaps exaggerated if Erin Hills is as exposed as it appears.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Roller_Coaster on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 4:22 pm

kwinigolfer wrote: with an ever-present chance of 10 mph breezes

So the calmest day of our summer Smile

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Roller_Coaster on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 4:22 pm

So my post started with "so"

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Roller_Coaster on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 4:23 pm

So

doff

Whistle

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 4:50 pm

You said that Berger was easy to pull against, but did not give any explanation why.

You seem to be critical of nearly American, in one way or another. He's slow, or has a different name, or seems entitled, or he is a god botherer, or has tics, or has a swing like a tennis serve.

I don't get the "entitled" vibe from Berger at all. Every thing I have read about him is that he has worked hard at his game, picking up range balls to have range privileges, playing against local pros when he was a high schooler.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 5:33 pm

For what it's worth I think Daniel Berger has a great attitude to get to the very top of the game!

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 5:36 pm

https://weather.com/weather/tenday/l/1536520:5:US

Thunderstorms are forecast for Thursday now.....Phil may still get a chance to play!

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 6:02 pm

GPB,
Do you remember Jay Berger's service? I'm just saying it was most unusual and perhaps that's where Berger subliminally got his swing. Nothing against it, but if you think it's not unusual I'd be surprised. Jay Berger's serve most certainly is, but seems you're carping without having a look.

And, I can't think I'm ever critical of more than a hard core of "American" golfers; say Na, Crane, Woods (but only because there's more to golf than everything being about Tiger), Webb Simpson because of the silly things he tweets and names his offspring; and one or two are very slow but who otherwise I like. And then there are daft tweets from guys like Grayson Murray who clearly needs to get out more. Way outweighed by guys I enjoy following

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 6:43 pm

I really wish you guys would check with me on "silly offspring" names. To clarify the silly names: Danny, Ian, Luke, Lee are all silly and should be ridiculed as needed. (Anyone seeing a patter here? If so, that's entirely coincidental.)

You're welcome. Wink

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 8:57 pm

I see Rory's putting a new putter in the bag for the US Open, we can safely rule him out so. Awful looking thing.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVODS85g6gG/

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 9:15 pm

Can't ever imagine Gary Player not wanting to have the last word on anything (kind of a familiar theme in this year's USA as it happens), and a barney over his opinion of Chambers Bay is no exception:

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/player-fires-back-rtj-showboater-comments

I particularly like his opinion that the architect "had to have had one leg shorter than the other". Don't think it's an original, but pretty amusing nevertheless.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by super_realist on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 9:37 pm

Be_the_ball wrote:I see Rory's putting a new putter in the bag for the US Open, we can safely rule him out so. Awful looking thing.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVODS85g6gG/

Why do they have to have their name on everything?

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Mon 12 Jun 2017, 10:48 pm

super_realist wrote:
Be_the_ball wrote:I see Rory's putting a new putter in the bag for the US Open, we can safely rule him out so. Awful looking thing.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVODS85g6gG/

Why do they have to have their name on everything?

It's an awful gaudy looking thing, i'd be trying to convince then to leave my name off of it if I were him.

One of the first things he did when Nike made their announcement was to put a Scotty Cameron back in the bag, beggars belief he would then switch to this thing. It being the week of a Major and the US Open at that, madness. The putter is probably the most important club in the bag this week. He who pays the piper calls the tune I suppose.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by super_realist on Tue 13 Jun 2017, 4:45 am

Whatever works BTB. Many golfers are having great results with that putter. Spliff Johnson for example.


Not sure why they have to have some 6th Grade art competition in regards to the initials of each golfer on their apparel though.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Tue 13 Jun 2017, 12:56 pm

How does the R/A call this tournament an "Open" and a "Amateur"

http://www.randa.org/Championships/LadiesBritishOpenAmateurChampionship/SP-Leaderboard#/competition/964346/leaderboard

For an Organization that gets upset when the RotW calls it the "British Open", it seems strange that added the "British" adjective.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by puligny on Tue 13 Jun 2017, 7:24 pm

Come on, you're a clever chap and I'm sure you can work it out. It's an Open Am, because it's open, and it's am! It's title includes the word British.

The Open Championship on the other hand is called the Open Championship because it's always been called the Open Championship.

Glad to be of help.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by raycastleunited on Thu 15 Jun 2017, 4:03 pm

super_realist wrote:
Be_the_ball wrote:I see Rory's putting a new putter in the bag for the US Open, we can safely rule him out so. Awful looking thing.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVODS85g6gG/

Why do they have to have their name on everything?

Didn't you have your name on your things at school? Given that a number of top pro's use this putter, it surely makes sense to have their name stamped on them. They will be in and out of the taylormade tour truck and probably have several identical copies in reserve.

If it worked for me I wouldn't care less what it looked like.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by super_realist on Thu 15 Jun 2017, 5:08 pm

Yes, when I was at school, not when employed as a professional.

I'm talking more about things like their hats etc which it seems mandatory to have their initials on in a really terrible design.

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Re: PGA Tour: "Memphis"; Elvis among those staying away: Notes from the Ballwasher

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