PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

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PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 02 Aug 2017, 6:34 pm

First topic message reminder :

1).The summer's "International Swing" is over, Play-Offs are looming, and so is the desperate scramble for PGA Tour pros to secure "status" for the 2017/2018 season (which starts in ten weeks' time!).
With so many FedEx points to be earned, in Ohio and Nevada, and many journeyman players having to sit and watch next week's PGA Championship at home, it's now or nearly never for many "notables", both American and "International" pros.

2).Top 125: Players otherwise still exempt for next season who are currently at risk of missing out on the FedEx Play Offs include:
~117th: Bubba Watson!
(Bubba, Charley Hoffman and Phil Mickelson are the only three golfers to have reached the BMW (3rd) Round of the Play-Offs, for the Top 70. Bubba needs to get his skates on just to qualify for Round 1.)
~123rd: McDowell - not playing this week so may be resigned to his fate.
~129th: Badds
~131st: Kaufman - who's smylieng now?
~141st: Lowry
~149th: Furyk - Tough to believe that Sonny Jim is exhausting his exemptions; but like Goosen (160th), KJ Choi (180th), Mahan (194th), Harrington (196th)and Els (210th) has a career earnings' safety net.

3).Top 125: Well known players who have no exemption for next season and may not reach the Top 125 include:
~120th: David Hearn - has been in respectable summer form but pulled a clunker in native Canada when he needed a strong result. Playing Barracuda.
~121st: Ogilvy - returning to Reno where he won the Barracuda a few years ago.
~124th: Tringale - Rickie Fowler's former flat-mate has hit a speed bump in his Tour career. Once one of the top players without a win, he's struggled all year.
~128th: Summerhays - seems to have been up with the leaders a lot since Memorial only to fall at the last.
~133rd: Varner - as Matt Jones would tell him, a nice win in Australia does nothing for you on the PGA Tour.
~134th: Ryan Palmer - has been distracted by family health concerns and may be in for a "compassionate" extension.
~145th: Matt Jones - has finished 126th twice, and 127th once, in FedEx points - frustrating for the sweet swinging, quick playing, Aussie, but results recently fail to match his talent.
~147th: Troy Merritt - all his stats are mediocre, at best.
~148th: Kjeldsen - Some good work in the spring but not good enough if you're only playing 15+ events.
Outside the Top 150, are Ben Crane (151st), Boo Weekley (165th), Ishikawa (171st), Johnston (182nd), Cabrera (190th), Senden (206th, but hopefully due for a compassionate extension), Freddie Jac (218th - injured? Again??). We could lose them all.
~126th: Seamus Power has been in good form recently, has played well enough to show he belongs, and one trusts he can keep it together at Barracuda and Greensboro. Fingers Crossed

4).Top 200: Of secondary importance is the imperative to qualify for the web.com Finals, open among other qualifications to players ranked 126th to 200th in FedEx points. As things stand, that's a destination for:
Sam Saunders, Sabbatini, Gonzo, Greg Owen, Cejka, Chris Stroud, Bohn, Johnson Wagner, Ricky Barnes, Robby Castro, Will MacKenzie, Romero - all of whom are regular attendees.

5).Presidents Cup: US Team for Captain Steve Stricker:
Currently the leading 10 qualifiers are: DJ, Spieth, Thomas, Berger, Koepka, Fowler, Kisner, Kuchar, Chappell, Hoffman - That's 5 FIVE! golfers who have neither Presidents nor Ryder Cup experience.
Two Captain's choices will be added: Patrick Reed is 11th in qualifying points, followed by Harman, Dufner, Snedeker, Woodland, Steele and Mickelson (17th).

6).Patrick Reed has been spinning his wheels all summer, playing almost every week with diminishing returns. Take a break! . . . . . but that's not likely. He's played seven weeks on the trot (slipping from 17th in the owgr's to 25th), plays Bridgestone and the PGA, followed by Greensboro and Northern Trust both of which you'd expect him to play as recent past champion. You'd think Stricker would want a rested Reed but that ain't likely.

7).Presidents Cup: International Team for Cap'n Price:
Qualifying positions currently occupied by: Matsuyama, Day, Scott, Charl, Louis, Leishman, Grace, Si Woo Kim, Jhonny Vegas, Grillo. Half of that lot are conspicuously out of form so Nick's Picks will be important. Just outside his Top Ten are:
Tanihara, Hadwin, Ben An, etc. Not much form there either.

8).Exciting finish at Glen Abbey last week - Jhonny Vegas became the 3rd player to successfully "defend" his title this season, and in the process halted two notable streaks:
~8 wins by golfers in their 20's.
~11 wins by Americans.
Difficult not to feel that Charley Hoffman rather threw this away with so many chances going begging by not getting his putts to the hole. He should know better.
And Well Done Ian James Poulter. A 3rd place finish represented his 9th straight cut and lifted him from 205th to 62nd in owgr terms in the last 5 months. A couple more decent finishes and he'll be in the Top 50 where he will tell you is the very least he deserves. After the summer he's had, who could disagree?!

9).No Poults this week as we return to boring old Firestone - a fine challenge for the best in the world, but little pizzazz on this testing Par-70 in Akron, Ohio; just two Par-5's and, unless the Tour sets up the course with some unforeseen imagination, one of those is a true 3-shotter.
And no Lowry this week either as Shane gets scant reward for winning here two years ago. Less prestigious events give past champs a 5-year exemption but no such luck in WGC's unfortunately.
I like the past two winners that have actually qualified, Rory and DJ, but with their form on the blink, you'd think longer odds longshots would offer better value, each way. Can Rafa C-B continue his form? Or (one-time local boy) Dufner?
And, for a much longer price, I kinda like Kyle Stanley's chances on this fairways-and-greens type of course.

10).One thing's for sure in Reno, venue for the opposite-field Barracuda Championship. No Masters invite for the winner, but most of the other perks for a winner are available, including the final spot in next week's PGA Championship.
The jazzy Jack Nicklaus design, Montreux G&CC, will offer a festival of birdies and eagles encouraged by the "modified" Stableford scoring system, and some of the most spectacularly scenic views on Tour. It's going to be hot. Very hot. 100+F hot, at altitude which possibly(?) makes it feel even toastier. Survival of the fittest.
Experience has helped since the points scoring system was adopted, with Geoff Ogilvy, Snakey Chalmers and JJ Henry (twice) among recent winners. Harrington is in the field and he played well here before. And a BIG week is imperative for his compadre Seamus Power.
Whatever happens at Firestone and Reno, a small handful of pros will have extended their careers by a year or more, while others will know their last chance saloons are in North Carolina, at the PGA Championship in Charlotte (for some) and Greensboro.

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Sun 06 Aug 2017, 10:37 pm

As they say in Japan, "Bonsai". Congrats Hideki great win.

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Mon 07 Aug 2017, 12:45 am

And for Pieters it's 'kamikaze'.

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by McLaren on Mon 07 Aug 2017, 10:28 am

A bit of a shame for Pieters but given his play at the Masters earlier this year and his performance at the bridgestone it wouldn't be a major shock to see him in the mix at quail hollow.

As always it is a slight worry to see a player falter when in contention but Pieters hasn't been in that position in the big events often enough to make any conclusions about how he will fair in the future.
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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Be_the_ball on Mon 07 Aug 2017, 10:35 am

https://twitter.com/WGC_Bridgestone/status/894294755785527297?s=09

Arigatou!

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson on Mon 07 Aug 2017, 9:42 pm

https://www.golfdigest.com/story/the-pga-championship-is-moving-to-may-and-players-are-on-board?mbid=social_twitter

It seems like the PGA is moving to May from 2019!

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by I'm never wrong on Mon 07 Aug 2017, 10:18 pm

Saw an article on this in my paper the other day. ET were said to be watching the situation in respect of the BMW PGA

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Mon 07 Aug 2017, 11:11 pm

I don't like it.

a) I think the majors will get dilluted by being played so close together.
b) It also favours/disfavours players on a hot streak or are injured.
c) By having the 3 US majors played within a span of just 2 months it favours US based players even more than before.

Ideally I would like to see the major season stretched out a bit more, like in tennis. Now it seems everything is done to accomodate the FEDEX playoffs. Olympics are only every 4th year, with a limited field, so don't think that should be of much concern. Move the PGA to October or so. You could make it part of the R2D playoffs if that's an issue, and/or kickstart the otherwise uninteresting PGAT wraparound season.

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Mon 07 Aug 2017, 11:21 pm

Be_the_ball wrote:https://twitter.com/WGC_Bridgestone/status/894294755785527297?s=09

Arigatou!
It could as well have been the fields a*se he was handing on a plate there..

Impressive stuff from Hideki. Sort out his putting inside 10ft and he's unstoppable.
But I think you can sense the US media don't warm to him. Don't think he gets the TV coverage / attention he deserves. A bit of a shame, although he probably doesn't care. Despite his linguistic shortcomings he seems to be a nice guy.

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Tue 08 Aug 2017, 12:45 am

Pedro: Hard to get a 156 player field to play 18 holes/day in October.

there should not be....its just a fact of life on professional golf tours.

BTW....The Gals played agonizing slow at Kingsbarns last week. Final grouping took 4 hrs 35 minutes on both Sat and Sun

Even with the 30 minute debacle on Hole 13 on Sunday, Kuchar and Spieth played in 4 hrs 12 minutes.

And the Guys have to back track to the Championship tees a lot more than women have to do in their set up.


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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 08 Aug 2017, 1:02 am

Good luck playing the PGA at Oak Hill in May 2023.

It could work out OK, but the precedents are not encouraging - Seniors PGA will try it again in a couple of years.

Completely agree with pedro's bullet points; think the PGA must be daft or, more likely, received huuuge pay-offs from the PGA Tour.


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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Wed 09 Aug 2017, 1:22 pm

About the schedule and more ... https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/08/sports/golf/pga-tour-schedule.html?hpw&rref=sports&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=well-region&region=bottom-well&WT.nav=bottom-well

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 09 Aug 2017, 2:05 pm

Sr,
The premise of that is all very well, but bringing the FedEx "Tour Championship" forward a month was pretty much at the urging of Woods & Mickelson yet the same players who said they wanted a break went globe-trotting for appearance fees, sponsor shindigs and other financial guarantees. Nothing wrong with that, but the Tour's best are determined to speak out of both sides of their mouth, Rory included.

PS: Loved the MW exhibit on NY 20's/30's, an hour well spent.

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Wed 09 Aug 2017, 2:09 pm

Kwin - Thanks for the heads up ... playing Sadaquada tomorrow and will also stop by the MW exhibit.

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Re: PGA Tour: Barracuda / Bridgestone: Notes from the Ballwasher

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