The Right Club

I’ve just piped a drive, and now I’m facing a short iron to a green with a large bunker protecting a front pin. My trusty range-finder gives me exactly 150 yards to the flag. It’s a simple calculation from here, right? 8-iron is my 150 club. No problem.

Five minutes later, I’m awkwardly situated under the lip of that front bunker, trying my best to remember the “how to advance the ball from a plugged lie” tip I read last week in Golf Digest.bunkerblast

Sound familiar? In any given round of golf, how many of your approach shots end up short of the green? Count the next time you play. You will likely be shocked at what you find.

For most of us, the source of the problem lies not in the swing we make but in the decisions we make prior to the swing. This should come as good news, as making better decisions is a lot easier than making better swings, especially for the average weekend warrior. So, let’s try this again. Continue reading

You vs. the Pros: New Pros Added

PGALPGA

Over the weekend we expanded our You vs. the Pros report, so that now your can choose from all of the top ranked golfers from the PGA and LPGA tours and view their stats from 2009.

We’re always looking to improve the report, so if you have other statistics that you track and would like to compare  (note that the PGA has to track them as well), or if there is another golfer you would rather measure yourself against, just let us know and we’d be happy to add them in

Masters 2010: Changing of the Guard

This was to be the week. Masters 2010 was Tiger’s opportunity to make amends. In his words, he would be more respectful of the game and more appreciative of those who have supported him. Early in the week, a softer Woods was freed up around the press, he was reportedly more generous with the patrons, and he smiled – often. The collective golf world breathed a sigh of relief as the scoreboardbeating heart of our game strolled around the grounds at Augusta with a seemingly contrite and humble outlook on golf and life. Yes, the new Tiger appeared tuned-in to the world outside of his Nike cap. Perhaps he really got it – he’d dragged us all down with him, and now he’d returned to pull us all back up. This was a promising start.

We watched Tiger on Thursday afternoon, and at times we were once again amazed by his golf. But no one ever really questioned his ability to show up and hit a low rope hook around a tree. What we sought was a Tiger we could get behind not for the shotmaking but for the example of reconciliation and humility. For once, we wanted a Tiger that was more than simply an astonishing golfer. But as the week progressed, Tiger regressed. He was back to business as usual in the media room, back to using his cold stare to put distance between him and anyone who might encroach. Then came Sunday afternoon at Amen Corner. Continue reading

New Blog Name: The Scratch Pad

Thanks to everyone for your suggestions and feedback. While the finalists were all strong contenders, the consensus (among both you and us) formed around one name . The clear winner was The Scratch Pad, and we’re very excited to have that as the new name for our online golf handicap blog. We’ll be posting the name shortly.

As a thank you to Dayton House (who suggested the name), we’ll be sending him a free year of membership.

Walter

As far as I could tell, Walter was Birkdale Golf Club’s Boo Radley – mysterious, detached, reclusive. He seemed to live among the woods of North Carolina pines, or maybe in the pond beside the second green, rising up out of the stagnant water every morning dressed in rubber coveralls with attached boots. I’d spot him in the strangest places – rummaging through the dense underbrush beside the 3rd fairway, or crouching across the swampy, snake-infested muck to the right of the 13th hole. He would hold a KJ Choi SuperStroke putter grip-sized cigar in his teeth as he slunk through the shadows of the property. He never made eye contact, he never talked, but he was always there. Continue reading