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PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer Tue 19 May 2015, 7:42 pm

No, silly, not another shoot-out between the Bandidos and Cossacks, but the "Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial" in Fort Worth, followed next week by the "AT&T Byron Nelson" in the Dallas area.

In deference to arguably more important golfing events at Wentworth and Royal County Down, I'll anticipate European Tour threads for the fortnight and abbreviate these Notes.

1).Wonderful from Rory McIlroy at Quail Hollow, obviously a dominating performance with a brilliant driving exhibition and improved putting, possibly courtesy of a few minutes with Dave Stockton.
Unfortunately, Rory's schedule after this five-tournaments-in five-weeks means he misses out on "Memorial" which is a course one would think would suit him even better than Quail Hollow. Imagine his US schedule for the rest of the year will look like:
US Open
Bridgestone
PGA Championship
Barclays
Deutsche Bank
BMW
Tour Championship.

2).Interesting that Martin Kaymer, possibly among others, advocates a later date for "Wentworth" - can't see it happening before 2017 simply because of an inevitably compressed summer schedule in 2016, Olympic Year. With the PGA Tour's schedule in some flux around the first weekend of July, there might be an opportunity for the E.T's flagship event to be staged then come 2017.

3).Colonial pays homage to Ben Hogan and sees the two-thirds point in the PGA Tour season before the FedEx Play-Offs get underway.
If previous seasons are anything to go by, Graeme McDowell's schedule won't be much different from Rory's (above), and at this rate, and in this form, McDool will miss the Play-Offs. He's down to 135th in FedEx points, only played 9 tournaments in a schedule that doubtless was expected to include two or three Play-Off stops, and needs to pretty much double his FedEx points haul to qualify for The Barclays.
Luke Donald is in even worse shape although he's played two more tournaments than McDool - Lukey still has to qualify for the Bridgestone and two "Opens" and will surely have to show up at tournaments he hadn't expected to!

4).Colonial and next week's Byron Nelson are big-money events and Europeans such as Casey, Jacobsen and Poulter can help themselves mightily in the absence of most of the Tour's galacticos.
There will be some confluence of course specialists (Johnson, Weekley, Stricker, Toms), local guys (like Palmer, Reed, Spieth and Walker) and form.
If Grumpy's game was focussed here this week I'd be looking at:
Walker, Kirk and Johnson.  Palmer, Todd and Streb.  Weekley, Campbell and Stroud. (Edit: Should have found a place for John Peterson who probably ticks all three boxes. Gonna break through one day soon!)

5).Lastly, another week, another "Major" on the Champions Tour and twenty-plus Europeans are teeing it up there, contesting this week's Senior PGA Championship, led by Langer, Montgomerie, sirNick, Parnevik, Chapman, Barry Lane (still haven't figured out why he hasn't flourished on the Champions Tour) and Lyle.
The venue for their entertainment is French Lick.
I can't follow that.

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 20 May 2015, 2:19 am

The story regarding Patrick Reed's absence from his Europe commitments appears to concern a close family member who's under hospice care as he battles for his life.
Seems understandable that the Reeds would prefer to be close to home at such a time.

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Post by pedro Wed 20 May 2015, 8:20 am

Fair enough. I also read his statement - and although he wasn't specific about his reasons - you could feel we was sorry to cancel.

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Post by robopz Wed 20 May 2015, 4:12 pm

Nice write up Kwini.. as usual... thumbsup

IMO Kaymer makes a good point on moving the BMW PGA... The Players in May usually presents a better course than it did in March... and seems to make sense Wentworth would be in better shape in late June or early July than it is now. And I'd have to think if it could be a week or two adjacent to the OPEN, it would probably have a better chance of attracting the few ET holdouts, plus maybe even some decent representation out of the full time PGAT guys going over for the OPEN.

As it stands now... it appears only 16 of the Top-50 OWGR are entered in the BMW despite any and all the OWGR being exempt. Near as I can tell there's not a single full time PGAT guy in the field (nor in the last 2 years either)... even Reed if he'd played would have been doing so as an ET member.

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Post by navyblueshorts Wed 20 May 2015, 4:25 pm

robopz wrote:...As it stands now... it appears only 16 of the Top-50 OWGR are entered in the BMW despite any and all the OWGR being exempt. Near as I can tell there's not a single full time PGAT guy in the field (nor in the last 2 years either)... even Reed if he'd played would have been doing so as an ET member.
I wonder if the ET have thought to ask the pros who don't play their flagship event, why they don't do so? Probably not...
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Post by McLaren Wed 20 May 2015, 5:07 pm


That is a good point Navy. With only 16 of the worlds top 50 this really isn't any better than a pretty average PGAT field.



Did anyone work out the the BMW PGA's actual SOF this year?
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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 20 May 2015, 5:38 pm

owgr did, Mac: 350.

robo thumbsup
Are you going this week, or next?

How do you define "full-time PGAT guy"? Can't think of any that aren't PGA Tour members playing for . . . . well, can't think of any! Ever!!
Not many Europeans who have skipped this year's festivities; Casey, Garcia, Poults and Stenson, but not anyone too significant otherwise - unless Charl and Louis are still ET members.

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Post by robopz Wed 20 May 2015, 6:25 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:owgr did, Mac: 350.

robo  thumbsup
Are you going this week, or next?

How do you define "full-time PGAT guy"? Can't think of any that aren't PGA Tour members playing for . . . . well, can't think of any! Ever!!
Not many Europeans who have skipped this year's festivities; Casey, Garcia, Poults and Stenson, but not anyone too significant otherwise - unless Charl and Louis are still ET members.

Kwini, I'm not going this week, but hope to get up to the Nelson on Monday - Wednesday or at least two of those days. Hope so, if I can't make it, it'll be the first time I've missed all 4 Texas events in probably 30 years... Well see.

And as for "full time" PGAT members... what I was referring to are those who are PGAT members but don't dual Tour on the ET. And of course I realize for most the dual-tour PGAT/ET guys the lions share of their non co-sanctioned schedule is on the PGAT these days.

And in Answer to NAVY: I'd bet this new ET management does ask the players why they don't participate. But the answer is pretty obvious even without asking I'd think. In a nutshell, they don't have to. The other big events aside, players are going to play when it suits their schedule and on courses they think suit them. And sad to say... while there's still undoubtedly many ET players who will play the BMW PGA out of loyalty to the ET, that's beginning to change and IMO will accelerate if the ET doesn't make some significant change to stop it. Could be make it a required event to be eligible for the Ryder Cup (realizing the RC is about the only golden handcuffs the ET has going right now), or consider a date change like Kaymer's suggesting. Not sure even a date change will entirely work, but they need to do something methinks.

One other potential factor... I know people don't like to talk about it, but IMO the U.K's "athlete tax" on non UK based players could be more of a factor in players skipping the BMW (or other UK based events) than many people think. Nobody likes ponying up to the Tax man regardless if they make a paycheck or not... but that's exactly what happens. Stenson and Garcia have in fact been up front in saying just that... so I'd think there could be a lot more who's primary residences are now elsewhere who're thinking similarly, even if they're not coming right out and admitting it.

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Post by McLaren Wed 20 May 2015, 7:26 pm

Thanks kwini.

Does that mean its a 52 event boosted to 64?

That is a pretty big hand out.
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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 20 May 2015, 7:37 pm

Not sure, Mac.

Some British interest this week at Colonial, and all five flag-bearers worth a second look:
Casey: 3 appearances, incl 5th and 13th.
Davis: 7 trips, incl 2nd (unlucky not to win) and 14th
Knox: 1 visit, 21st.
Laird: 4 stops, made the cut each time, incl 2 x T10's.
Poulter: 3 appearances incl 8th & 15th.

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Post by sirbenson Wed 20 May 2015, 11:19 pm

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/jenkins-woods-beat-lot-nobodies-majors/

Dan Jenkins is so bitter, like what is with the troll article? Tiger Woods at his best is still better than this era and that includes Mcilroy


Last edited by sirbenson on Wed 20 May 2015, 11:56 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by raycastleunited Wed 20 May 2015, 11:24 pm

I would imagine the real reason players are skipping the PGA at Wentworth is the tax implications on annual sponsorship income.

EDIT: I see robo mentioned this already. No British player would mention it following the negative press reporting of tax avoidance schemes.

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Post by robopz Wed 20 May 2015, 11:36 pm

McLaren wrote:Thanks kwini.

Does that mean its a 52 event boosted to 64?

That is a pretty big hand out.

Yes... a 52 level if rated without the flagship minimum. And yes, it is a pretty big handout. Last weeks Quail Hollow field was also a 350 for reference.  

It might be time for the OWGR to re-look the Flagship minimums...  here are how they work out now... Notice the Australian Open is the only of the big Flagships that gets no help.  It's flagship minimum is 32, but it rated 34 on it's own.  Otherwise the flagship boosts help the other events from between double (SA OPEN) to only 3% (PLAYERS)


Min  -  Rate  -   Extra  -  % Boost  
32   -   16   -    16    -    100%  -  South African Open
32   -   34   -    -2    -      0%  -  Australian Open
32   -   24   -     8    -     33%  -  Japan Open
64   -   52   -    12    -     23%  -  BMW PGA
80   -   78   -     2    -      3%  -  the Players

Notes :
The above based on last playing of the event and estimate for this weeks BMW PGA
Min = Flagship Minimum for the event
Rate = If the event were OWGR rated or got it's tour minimum (highest of)
Extra = Points above the Rate
% Boost = the Minimum over the Rate

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 1:52 am

Very anti subsidies, and very, very anti paying owgr points to everyone for showing up for limited field events, especially Nedbank and Heroworship Challenge.

Dan Jenkins has become a caricature of himself. Berk. Shame, as he could be quite good before he started losing his marbles.

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Post by robopz Thu 21 May 2015, 3:51 am

kwinigolfer wrote:Very anti subsidies, and very, very anti paying owgr points to everyone for showing up for limited field events, especially Nedbank and Heroworship Challenge.

Dan Jenkins has become a caricature of himself. Berk. Shame, as he could be quite good before he started losing his marbles.

What about the [now apparently defunct] short field Volvo Match Play?

Agree on Jenkins. One of my favorite writers of all time, I must have most all his books... loved his biting humor. Don''t know exactly when the line was crossed, but now he's pretty much a sad example of the Woody Hayes bitter crotchety old man syndrome... too bad really.

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Post by Sand Thu 21 May 2015, 8:41 am

raycastleunited wrote:I would imagine the real reason players are skipping the PGA at Wentworth is the tax implications on annual sponsorship income.

EDIT: I see robo mentioned this already. No British player would mention it following the negative press reporting of tax avoidance schemes.

Poulter said he was playing due to his dreadful record at the course. Heard an interview with Sergio where he said if he was playing he would be playing 6 weeks in a row as playing the Irish next week. Wouldn't be surprised if Tax was part of the reason too as have heard that but he has also said he is not a big fan of Wentworth either. No idea why Stenson or Casey are not playing.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 9:55 am

robo,
Yup, against paying points for guys that don't win a match at the WGC Match Play also.

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Post by McLaren Thu 21 May 2015, 9:59 am

Robo

Thanks for putting those numbers together.

To move from 52 to 64 I calculate that the BMW PGA would need an extra 176 SOF points (536-350).

That is a lot of extra top 50 players for an event to attract that currently can only tempt 13 of the worlds elite.



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Post by robopz Thu 21 May 2015, 12:24 pm

Sand wrote:Poulter said he was playing due to his dreadful record at the course. Heard an interview with Sergio where he said if he was playing he would be playing 6 weeks in a row as playing the Irish next week. Wouldn't be surprised if Tax was part of the reason too as have heard that but he has also said he is not a big fan of Wentworth either. No idea why Stenson or Casey are not playing.


I think these guys are smart enough now to mostly not talk about tax issues. They've learned any comment on it, regardless how reasonable, most likely will be seen by many as just another "entitled spoiled rich guy whining about taxes". See Mickelson and the skewering he got over his statements on California state taxes.

I can't speak for Poulter, but Stenson and Garcia HAVE spoken about it in the past. That they're not now, doesn't mean its not still either the, or one of their primary reasons for not playing. Consider Sergio's comments he doesn't want to play 6 in a row. On the face of it that makes sense until you consider that he chooses THIS one to skip. Could you imagine if Jordan Spieth or Bubba Watson would skip the PLAYERS using the reasoning "I want to play New Orleans and Colonial so I'm skipping the PLAYERS because that would be too many in a row". ??


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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 12:30 pm

Looks like Fort Worth is getting a bit of a soaking right now, thunderbolts and lightening, very very frightening. Wouldn't be surprised if there's a delay.
As for French Lick, things are moist there also, but no idea about the weather.

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Post by robopz Thu 21 May 2015, 12:31 pm

McLaren wrote:Robo

Thanks for putting those numbers together.  

To move from 52 to 64 I calculate that the BMW PGA would need an extra 176 SOF points (536-350).

That is a lot of extra top 50 players for an event to attract that currently can only tempt 13 of the worlds elite.

Stenson, Garcia, Oosthuizen, Poulter, Schwartzel represent 93 EVR value loss to the BMW (80+13). If added it would rate at a 58.   I don't count #34 Casey because he's given up ET membership, nor do I count #45 Gallacher who pulled out due to injury.  But even adding those two back in, the BMW would still be a level 58... Sure it's a moot point in one way because it's a flagship minimum 64... so unless it gets above that it doesn't really matter... But at least with those players in the field it would look less "subsidized".


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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 12:54 pm

Delay in Fort Worth (happily not Tom Delay) for at least an hour.
This could be the story of the week as thunderstorms are threatened every day and the course must already be pretty well soaked with 7 inches of rain so far this month.

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Post by robopz Thu 21 May 2015, 1:08 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:Looks like Fort Worth is getting a bit of a soaking right now, thunderbolts and lightening, very very frightening. Wouldn't be surprised if there's a delay.
As for French Lick, things are moist there also, but no idea about the weather.
Texas is in "one of those weather patterns" we get once a decade or so where we can have a anywhere between 4-8 weeks of this weather in the Spring... usually anywhere from late March to late May.

Some years we get 4-6 weeks of it in January-Feb, but very little of it in Mar-May... this year, depending on where you are in the state, we're getting a good dosage of both (Like we are in SE Texas).

But there are many areas of the state that were in severe drought and definitely needed this due to historic low levels in many of our reservoirs. Unfortunately, much of this has been too far East or South within the state to do much to help the most drought affected areas... For instance Lake Travis (Austin) was down some 65' from "full pool" due to the drought... But the watershed west of Austin hasn't gotten near the rain this Spring as the East part of the state. Travis has gained 16' which sounds like a lot... but that's still more than 45' below "full"... and a good 20-25' below a "good level" for that lake.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 1:21 pm

robo,
I wish you'd hire all your laid-off oil service workers to lay pipe around the country to channel flooding rains, say to California. Do a darn sight more good than Keystone, for instance.

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Post by McLaren Thu 21 May 2015, 2:27 pm

Robo

I know the minimum won't change, but my point is just that the BMW never seems to get close to the 64 point minimum and is probably the most subsidized top level golf event.  Meaning the minimum should be lowered to somewhere in the 50's, if indeed you think a minimum should be applied at all.
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Post by pedro Thu 21 May 2015, 2:44 pm

The ET is becoming more and more dilluted so it would only make sense to lower the minimum. As an example I don't think it's fair that the PGA (64) is so close to a WGC (76). I also know this would be another nail in the ET coffin so it'll probably not happen in the near future.

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Post by McLaren Thu 21 May 2015, 2:56 pm

Given that the players doesn't really need its boost maybe the PGAT should get to pick another event for boosting?

Could the Memorial maybe get boosted to 80?
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Post by pedro Thu 21 May 2015, 2:59 pm

Mabe mac. But not the Memorial though. When Jack signs out, players wouldn't bother playing it anymore. Rather it should be one of the playoff events (not sure they'd need it though?).

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 3:13 pm

No point in trying to correct one wrong by initiating another Mac.


Something less than the bare minimum of info coming out of Fort Worth as a tentatively scheduled 9.00 a.m. (local time) has been and gone without explanation or revised start time.

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Post by McLaren Thu 21 May 2015, 3:32 pm

Kwini

Don't worry I was only joking, just wanted to highlight the absurdity of the BMW PGAs subsidy.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 4:17 pm

Action in Fort Worth after a 3-hour delay.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 7:23 pm

Watching the Senior PGA in Indiana.
Mark Rolfing with his usual anti-Europe narrative, what an effing idiot. Mute.

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Post by sirbenson Thu 21 May 2015, 7:34 pm

Go on Dufner!!! From tee to green at his best, he is up their with the best without any doubt.

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Post by sirbenson Thu 21 May 2015, 11:18 pm

Good start from Ryo, hopefully he can do his huge talent justice! I still predict majors for Ryo. He is too good not to imo!

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 21 May 2015, 11:25 pm

Not sure about that sirb, but good to see him playing much better - seems he's been hanging on a bit the past couple of years.

Spieth already with a "strokes gained putting" of almost 3 strokes after 7 holes. Tied with Poults in the early going.

And: Blixt and Davis digging themselves a very big hole, possibly a grave, for job retention. No moneylist safety net for either.

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Post by sirbenson Fri 22 May 2015, 12:08 am

Spieth is showing off with the putter again....his long putting is a masterclass

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Post by sirbenson Fri 22 May 2015, 12:09 am

kwinigolfer wrote:Not sure about that sirb, but good to see him playing much better - seems he's been hanging on a bit the past couple of years.

Spieth already with a "strokes gained putting" of almost 3 strokes after 7 holes. Tied with Poults in the early going.

And: Blixt and Davis digging themselves a very big hole, possibly a grave, for job retention. No moneylist safety net for either.

The poor years will stand for him, he is an incredible talent! And it's easy to forget he is 23!

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PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher Empty Re: PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by sirbenson Fri 22 May 2015, 1:34 am

Amazing how quick they have played after the delay!! Good job Ryo!


Vote yes

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PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher Empty Re: PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer Fri 22 May 2015, 2:10 am

Tiger-esque putting from Spieth today . . . . . . . .

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PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher Empty Re: PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB Fri 22 May 2015, 3:36 am

For those complaining about the OWGR subsidies, w/o those subsidies, the rankings would look more like the Sagarin rankings.

Not exactly, but a lot closer.

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Post by super_realist Fri 22 May 2015, 7:19 am

A great first round from the world's most over-rated golfer Poulter.

Doubt he'll keep it going for 4 rounds, but impressive none the less. Bogey on the last too.

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PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher Empty Re: PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer Fri 22 May 2015, 11:11 am

GPB,
Talking of subsidies, the Congressional interest in the PGA Tour and its tournaments' tax-free status seems to have waned recently. Without that "subsidy" it is likely that the structure of the PGA Tour would be adversely affected.

Having said which, most, not all, of the limited-field events which reward poor play are in the US for the benefit of PGA Tour's leading players. Scrap them and the landscape changes again.

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PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher Empty Re: PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer Fri 22 May 2015, 12:10 pm

Good job by the PGA Tour to get everyone round Colonial yesterday, even with a 3-hour delay (having said which, smaller than usual field).

It was be Tiger-esque for Spieth to take advantage of his early tee-time and establish an early 36-hole lead. If he putts like he did yesterday, he probably will.
Poults playing well though . . . . . should be an on-time departure for the first groups out, chance of thunderstorms later..

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Post by McLaren Fri 22 May 2015, 12:19 pm

GPB wrote:For those complaining about the OWGR subsidies, w/o those subsidies, the rankings would look more like the Sagarin rankings.

Not exactly, but a lot closer.

Are you sure?

If the players and BMW PGA were played at their true SOF field rating you think the OWGR would look like Sagarin. Hard to believe that claim.
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Post by GPB Fri 22 May 2015, 3:16 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:GPB,
Talking of subsidies, the Congressional interest in the PGA Tour and its tournaments' tax-free status seems to have waned recently. Without that "subsidy" it is likely that the structure of the PGA Tour would be adversely affected.

Having said which, most, not all, of the limited-field events which reward poor play are in the US for the benefit of PGA Tour's leading players. Scrap them and the landscape changes again.

Tax-Free Status of the PGATour is an entirely different issue and I don't know enough about it to discuss it intelligently.

There is no doubt in my mind that OWGR subsidies help the European Tour Players much much more than it helps PGATour players.

The OWGR minimum comes into play for about 20-25% Euro tournaments, including the tournaments co-sanctioned with Sunshine Tour and Asian Tour.  And even the tournaments that aren't subsidized are in fact indirectly subsidized by the "trickle-down".  

For example, Andy Sullivan won two subsidized tournaments earlier this season, earning 51 points.  That got into the top 60 of the OWGR which means he is now contributing 3-4 pts to the Strength of Field calculations to tournaments like the Szenshen Open and Open de Espana.   Without those subsidies he would have earned about 30 points and his ranking would be outside the top 100 and he would bring only 1 pt to the SoF calculations.

IMO, The extremely short fields like Hero, TourC, Nedbank, ToC should only award ranking points to the top half of the finishers.

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PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher Empty Re: PGA Tour: Shoot-Outs in Texas: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer Fri 22 May 2015, 3:42 pm

No argument about any of that GPB, just offering the thought that preferential tax policies offer their own subsidies. Or not.

No-one really setting Colonial alight this morning, but Spieth has his first 25-footer of the day. Must be nice!

Looks like Colonial might be lucky with today's weather; I like it green and lush there, makes a very pleasant change.

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Post by kwinigolfer Fri 22 May 2015, 5:49 pm

Poulter with the Colonial lead as he just has two holes remaining of his morning walk.

In other improbable news, there are three Canadians in the Top Ten, none of them named DeLaet.

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Post by kwinigolfer Fri 22 May 2015, 6:18 pm

Bogey on his final hole, but Ian Poulter has a 2-shot lead as the morning "wave" finishes its work.

Spieth has rather lost the radar on his tee-shots and the putter is no longer bailing him out. For now.

The afternooners just getting going. Cut looks to be about +1.

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Post by kwinigolfer Fri 22 May 2015, 9:01 pm

Poults joined in the lead by Kevin Na - three shots ahead halfway thru the afternoon. Doubt that would be a comfortable pairing for either, a little bit of history there dating back to a long ago Players Championship.

Interesting to watch the Seniors PGA coverage in light of talking about good golfers from other sports - early leader is Esteban Toledo who used to be a professional boxer (and more recently rescued a woman from a car crash on an LA freeway).

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Post by McLaren Fri 22 May 2015, 9:21 pm

Kwini

Are you referencing the time Poults got them put on the clock?
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