Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Ummm, Well, That's One Way To Do It

I was scouring through my Google Reader this morning and came upon this video over at With Leather, which is, well, some Asian television show that has some "instructor" teach a very busty girl how to hit bunker shots.

I mean, it's cheap and all, but what man wouldn't watch this if we had it in the states? That stupid ass "Surviving a Japanese Game Show" got time on network television, and you're telling me this girl and her enormous rack wouldn't land a million golf fans on the "The Golf Channel."

Friend #1 -- Hey dude, I heard that at 4 they're showing a 1987 Shell Wonderful World of Golf on The Golf Channel. You down to watch?

Friend #2 -- /punches friend in face ... replays Asian girl golf lesson for the eighth time

Monday, September 28, 2009

Just a quick congrats to one of my good golfing buddies from back home, Bryan Baker, on making it through pre-qualifying for Q-School. Baker, a scrappy player that hits a ton of fairways and always carries a hot putter, finished t-14 at the Seaside, Calif. site, shooting rounds of 74-78-69-71.

Nice playing, Bak. Keep it up.

Consider This FedEx Cup a Success

There is one simple recipe for every PGA Tour golf tournament -- Tiger + Phil = Win. On Sunday, at East Lake, that recipe happened both literally and figuratively -- Tiger and Phil both won, and the network won and the PGA Tour and the FedEx Cup and Tim Finchem and probably some Eskimo hanging out in his little ice hut in the northern expanses of Canada that loves golf.

Yep, call 2009 for the FedEx Cup. Yesterday, with three TVs hooked up in my apartment, hanging with my roommate, we decided to switch the big, HD television to golf for a decent amount of time in the later afternoon, deciding against the NFL or the Yankees-Red Sox game because golf was good television. In week three of the NFL season, you could argue it was the best TV.

People (myself included) worry about what the PGA Tour will do once Tiger and Phil decide to move on to other things. Sure, some young kid (Ryo Ishikawa and Rory McIlroy, for instance) will come along, flashy in their new digs and blow us all away, forgetting about a Woods and Mickelson, but for now, those two are the PGA Tour, and without them, they might as well save money on transporting the cameras from event to event.

At Augusta National this year, those two were paired together in the final round of the Masters, an hour before the leaders' names were even called and you would have forgot that anyone else was playing by the crowds and the attention that non-group got.

On Sunday, it was Phil and Tiger again, this time in different groups but as much in the mix as they could be. Tiger was struggling to keep his round in the red, but his bank account was about to get very much in the black with a $10 million bonus that comes with the FedEx Cup.

Phil on the other hand didn't ever have a realistic shot at the FedEx Cup (Tiger would have had to finish 8th), but his tournament was the actual one, and he was playing East Lake like it was a Saturday muni. The only bogey-free round on Sunday, Mickelson polished a beautiful 65 that was oh-so reminiscent of his 2000 final round at this same event on the same golf course. That year, Phil fired a 66 to beat Tiger by two. This time, it was a 65 to take down the biggest name in golf by three.

Maybe it wasn't so much a win for the FedEx Cup as it was a win for Tiger vs. Phil 6.0 (or 7.0, I could be losing count), but the golf world is still in need of these two, maybe more than ever. Next season, the PGA Tour will begin to feel the effects of an economy that hit the LPGA pretty hard this year. Finchem said the tour might lose tournaments next season, which probably should happen with sponsors pulling out.

That reality means the need for more Tiger and more Phil at more events. They need to show up and shake hands and smile for the cameras in the pro-am even if they'd rather be thousands of miles from Bill and Rich, the top employees at McGladrey & Pullen last year.

Those thoughts will be our offseason ... for now, we can all rejoice once more with Tiger and Phil, saving the FedEx Cup. It was good television, a good tournament and a battle until the final putt dropped. It's hard to imagine another name added to this mix to make it any better than the current outcome.

Scott Halleran, Getty Images

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Tiger Woods, One Day Away From Becoming Even Richer

It doesn't take someone with Robert Langdon's mind to figure out that Tiger Woods is a rich fella. He wins a ton of million dollar golf tournaments and companies pay him even more than that to pose with other athletes ("Look, the Mach 3 blades are smoooooth!") to help sell product.

If Tiger can avoid a very un-Tiger like blowup tomorrow at East Lake, and hold on to a share of second place or even win the tournament over Kenny Perry, he will add another $10 million to his pregnant bank account.

Oh the life of Mr. Woods.

If he holds on, this will be two-for-two when Woods actually plays in the playoffs, and it seems that with the way he avoids high finishes, he might claim ten of these before he finishes his career (or more, but I'm being generous).

The interesting part of this week at the Tour Championship has been how representative it's been to Tiger's year. He hasn't had his best stuff at all, much like most of 2009, but he still might win the damn thing, something that basically says what you should know about Tiger and golf.

He has never had to come to the course with his best, just something that resembled it and the trophy was still a plausible feat. Now, Tiger needs a good round on Sunday and a hopeful stumble by Perry, who was leading the Masters earlier this year until he placed both hands around his neck (or too tightly on his wedges) on the last two holes, eventually losing in a playoff to Angel Cabrera.

The good news -- Perry has a decent lead. The bad news -- Tiger doesn't want his year to end with people asking questions.

He is already the Player of the Year, and will most likely add FedEx Cup champion to his '09 resume. Just think, at this time last year, we were just hoping the guy would be walking properly.

Also, Vijay Singh was in his position. Strange what a year can do to some people.

Kevin C. Cox, Getty Images

Friday, September 25, 2009

Tiger Woods Leads Tour Championship, Should Be Leading By More

As Tiger Woods was walking up the 15th fairway, having just hit a 5-wood from 247 yards to 4-feet, 7-inches, the announcing group on hand at the tournament started chatting about Tiger's largest margin's of victory this season.

They discussed the eight shot victory Tiger just incurred on the field at the BMW Championship earlier this month. Tiger would make the eagle, play the last three holes some number under par and be five shots up before the rest of the field knew what happened.

Then something strange happened. Tiger missed the short eagle putt. Then, on 16, he missed an equally short birdie putt, catching a nasty lip. A scrambling par on 17 followed by a bogey on the 18th left Tiger only a shot clear of the field at the Tour Championship when it looked like he might blow this thing out of the water.

Now, instead of walking into Saturday with a whoknowshowmany shot lead, Tiger will be a single stroke ahead of Padraig Harrington and Sean O'Hair, who followed his opening round 66 with an even-par round of 70.

Tiger has set himself up for the $10 million prize that comes with the FedEx Cup trophy. The four guys chasing him the race are currently all out of the top-10, with only Jim Furyk breaking the top-17.

I'm fairly certain Tiger will be kicking something tonight after those short putts didn't fall.

Scott Halleran, Getty Images

No Reason Why Walking 18 Holes Can't Make You Fatter

Face it -- you aren't going to be losing any weight by riding around in a golf cart. It isn't going to happen. You'll most likely be drinking and breaking the 90 degree rules (As my uncle says, "You're always 90 degrees away from something") and eating a hot dog at the turn.

But walking ... walking can burn some calories. You can lug your bag or use a pull-cart and the three mile trek is good enough for a solid exercise. Well, unless you get your hands on the Mantys Golf Caddy.

I mean, this is America, and we cut corners more than a fourth-grade art class. You can "walk" 18 holes without walking at all! Next up -- Sumo wrestler just carries you to your ball.

h/t Busbee via Shackleford

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Titleist Gives Out Free Round of Golf With the 101st Man on the Money List

Alright, so the headline isn't fair ... Titleist is giving out a free round with Adam Scott, and all you have to do it is show Adam how to avoid making consecutive bogeys sign up on their website.

The offer ends on October 15, so make sure you're over there, because even if Scott can't bring his "A" game, you might get lucky enough to land some free Burberry gear and you get a free round at Kingston Heath Golf Club in Melbourne, Australia.

I'm going to sign up, just so I can live blog the round. Who wouldn't want that?

Update -- Yeah, gotta read the fine print ... I guess you have to be an Aussie to win the thing, because I am not from Scottsdale, Queensland or Scottsdale, Tasmania.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Johnny Miller Continues to Be Modest

You either love him or hate him, but probably hate him a lot more than you wanna hang with him. He's Johnny Miller, and for lack of a better insult term, he's an arrogant dick. He just is. Sorry, Johnny.

Monte Burke of talked with the NBC announcer, and pulled out a few gems from the two-time major champion.

First, and this one is my favorite, Miller answered the following question with this response, that really has nothing to do with what was asked.

Q. What's your take on the overall state of the game?

Johnny Miller: They've got it really good. The Tour is a fantastic place to be right now. I don't look back and say I got hosed. I think our era, if you don't count money, was maybe the most exciting era. You had Palmer, Nicklaus, Player, Trevino, [Raymond] Floyd, [Hale] Irwin, [Tom] Weiskopf, myself and Hubert Green. It was a golden age of golf from 1970 to 1980. I don't know if there will ever be one quite like it. Every era has two or three great golfers. Our era had six to 10. I probably shouldn't say this, but if I had played in the [Greg] Norman-[Nick] Faldo era, instead of winning 25 times with two majors, I probably would have won 40 times and had six majors. That era had [Fred] Couples, Norman, Faldo and [Curtis] Strange, but it didn't really have guys who could play on Sunday. We had the great era of Sunday players. There's a lot to be said for that.

I played the game super aggressively, more aggressively than Tiger does now, very similar to the way Phil Mickelson and Arnold Palmer play.

Like my buddy Ryan Wilson points out, it doesn't matter who you played against if you couldn't putt consistently. Also, I personally don't think Miller ever had the mental capacity to win six major championships. One major, the 1973 U.S. Open, Miller went out an hour before the leaders and shot a salty 63, hardly the pressure that he might have felt if he was leading all three days. The other major was a six-shot victory, again playing too well to feel the pressure that comes when you have a shot or two lead at a major coming down the stretch.

Oh, and as for his current job, he wants you to know he does that better than anyone else too, just in case you forgot for a second he's the best around.

Johnny Miller: I don't want to brag, but I do more homework on the course than any other announcer. I chart the greens to get all the breaks. I walk down into the greenside bunkers. I walk into the fairway bunkers to see whether a player can reach the green from them. My goal is to get to know the course as [well] or better than the players.

I really wish I could start a list of things people should never say. Miller's would be, "I don't want to brag." Stephon Marbury's would be, "This might sound crazy, but ..."

h/t Shackelford

The New Vokey Wedges Look Nice, Conform

I'm a Titliest guy through and through, so when they come out with new product, I'm going to post it.

The new Vokey wedges have been revealed, and it's safe to say they are as conforming as a Pro-V1. The new C-C models are exactly that, "Condition of Competition" irons that were made to conform to the new groove rules.

If you are thinking of playing some competitive golf over the next year or so, get your hands on some of these ($125 a pop), that come with a sticker proclaiming their innocence.

"This Vokey Design wedge conforms to the new 2010 USGA/R&A groove rule and can be used in events that adopt the new rule as a Condition of Competition."

Also, it might make it easier not to yank that full sand wedge off the green from 80 yards like you've been doing for years. Hey, my glass is currently half full ...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Well, That is Just GD Insane

Do me a favor ... the next time you're out on the golf course, and you have a long putt, think about this -- David Pelz, the guy that doesn't even play the game for a living, stroked in a putt three times as long as your tap-in you were so scared of.

Jay Busbee posted this video, and I have to say, the only thing better than the putt is Pelz's reaction as it finds the bottom of the cup.


Friday, September 18, 2009

More Hole-In-One News Than You Could Shake a Stick At

Alright, ready for more people to dislike? First, I wrote this story up yesterday at FanHouse, but two guys in the same group made aces, both using a 7-iron. They live in a place called Blue Bell, Pa., which is stupid because they don't even make Blue Bell ice cream there, which is fantastic stuff and you should try it if you haven't. Wait, where were we? Oh, yeah, the aces. Okay, so those guys did that over Labor Day.

Now, some 62-year-old lady in England named Ruth Day made two aces in the same f-ing round, from 149 and 162-yards. Also, to make matters worse, Ruth said after the round, "This hole-in-one business is so easy. Sometimes I go out and make three or four aces in a single round. I couldn't imagine being one of those people without an uno. Pathetic."*

And for the kicker, this video is a guy named Jason Hargett, who made an ace at the Mark Eaton Celebrity Classic in Utah, worth a cool million bucks. I actually really like this Jason fellow, just because he does the appropriate celebration when you make an ace worth seven figures. You go batshit crazy.

* = quote might not be true

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Best Rick Reilly Column I've Ever Read*

You guys know me, and I know some of you, so it isn't like you didn't already figure this out a while back -- I cannot stand Rick Reilly. Like, at all. And it isn't the same way most bloggers hate him (the guy gets paid $8 million a word, or so I've been told), it's a little different story.

When I was in college, I got his office number from a contact at Fox Sports. He was my writing guy, like a lot of aspiring writers that would stand around the mailbox on Thursday awaiting the Sports Illustrated, and I wanted to one day be able to do the stuff he did (which I now realize, is mail in 80 percent of your columns, which take you exactly 40 minutes to produce).

I called his office, only to have him tell me, kindly, to f--k off. Verbatim. Yep, nice dude. A real winner.

Anyway, since that moment I haven't read any of his stuff, except the occasionally accidental click that I make on He isn't the same guy. His writing is tired and his shtick is even worse. I see him the same way I see Jim Carrey as an actor -- good until you realize how bad he really is.

His latest piece about cheating to get a hole-in-one is typical Reilly ... take something everyone enjoys and somehow make it less fun. The absolutely fantastic folks at the Sportress of Blog dissected it FJM-style (Language NSFW, if you cared), and I have to admit, it's as good a dissecting of douchery as I've seen in a while. Enjoy the read.

LCD-Loaded Golf Bags Need to Make Sure to Shush When Golfers are Hitting

Back in 2004, you might remember Briny Baird (and Michelle McGann) started placing digital photos of missing children on their golf bags, as part of a partnership with something called Canon4Kids. It was an innovative idea, and changed the golf bag from marketing billboard to interactive tool.

Now, we're going a step further. Michael Allen, 2009 Senior PGA Champion, has installed a LCD-screen in his golf bag, similar to what you'd see on the bus you take from the airport to the parking lot. Yeah, that's the analogy this company probably was hoping for.

Pro Bag Ads is a company installing sun-resistant HD LCD displays into the bags of pro golfers. These LCDs then play advertisements for companies like "19th Hole Wines" during tournaments—we assume without sound—while the caddies enjoy the extra heft of a TV and batters on a midsummer day.

I've had some pretty miserable caddie stories from my time at St. Andrews (including a lady that didn't have a strap, expecting me to forearm the f-ing bag all round), but this would probably take the cake? A television in your bag? Allen's caddied has probably enjoyed a couple more cocktails after each round.

I don't hate the idea, but like Gizmodo points out, it doesn't help when the stitching and lettering around the bag looks brighter and easier to read than the LCD-screen. I'm sure it'll eventually get tweaked, but if I know the crowds at a Champions Tour event, they don't exactly have Superman-like vision. "Honey ... what does it say?"

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Best Thing I've Seen in Weeks

I'm 25, and I think I laugh more than most people do in 50 years of living. Why is that? Because of stuff like this.

Devil Ball Golf found this video of a thing called the SwingDome, that will help you get a "strong ankle turn" or something. I just ordered two, for both legs. I hope you do the same.

Hank Haney Will Now Screw Up Ray Romano's Golf Swing

I have expressed my distaste for "The Golf Channel" on this here page before, mainly because I think it has a great opportunity to do good for this world and tends to fail miserably.

All that was erased when a really smart producer decided to team Charles Barkley up with Hank Haney for a television show to fix Barkley's golf swing. (I must admit something here -- the success of this show falls almost entirely with Barkley, who persuaded me, with his ability to speak his mind no matter the situation, to write on my Facebook page under Favorite TV Shows, "Anything with Charles Barkley.")

From the first moment Barkley and Haney shook hands, you knew "The Haney Project" as going to be a success. The only problem? Barkley didn't get any better. Like, at all. He beaned a spectator with an errant tee shot at the Regions Charity Classic and ended up going one-handed at the Lake Tahoe Celebrity Championship. So, since Haney didn't really fix anything with Barkley (which probably isn't fair to Haney, since Barkley doesn't seem to be fixable), "The Golf Channel" has decided to do another season ... with Ray Romano.

Romano is an avid golfer, who doesn't seem to have the demons Barkley battles with on a daily basis, so the project will be a tad easier for Tiger Woods' coach this time around. But, dealing with Barkley first, I'm pretty sure a blind guy would be an easier sell for Haney. Honestly, starting that show off with Barkley is like making someone who has never drank alcohol before in their lives down a glass of Everclear to start the night.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Steve Blass, I Hate You Too!

Make your damn hole-in-ones. That's fine. I don't care. Balls leave irons all year long, fly in the air a few seconds, land on soft greens and find the bottom of the cup. That is what a hole-in-one involves.

I understand other people are going to make them, and I'm fine with it, I just don't want to hear about it. What I'm not fine with? Some former Pirates pitcher making two aces in the same round! That feat belongs to Steve Blass, who was supposedly solid back in his prime until he went on a Ian Baker-Finch-like slide from greatness.

On Thursday, Blass, who I now have pinned directly in the center of my dart board, made two aces in the same round, from 154-yards and 175-yards. Yep, his scorecard had two ones on it. According to the report, Blass had to spend $400 on drinks in the bar, which is a small price to pay for making this incredible blog.

I'll add a funny hole-in-one story from a couple of weeks ago. Playing the small course near my place in Scottsdale, my buddy and I came upon a group that was playing pretty slow. We were a twosome, and the group in front was four, but didn't seem to know the proper etiquette for letting groups play through.

On the par-3 5th hole, I heard a whistle and looked on the green to see the guys waving us up. It took me a second to get my club, get together and get ready to hit. At this point, the four guys had surrounded the pin, looking to be playing the hole out for some reason. After a brief convo with my buddy, we decide they're still letting us through, so I hit my 52-degree Vokey wedge in the screws, and watch it fly purposefully at the stick. Problem was, they weren't looking. Not one of them.

The ball lands about four inches short of the hole, takes a small bounce and spins to their dismay. The guys looked the same way East Coast people look after eating greasy Mexican food -- not so hot. I went up and apologized, and they said that without any spin, she would have happily rolled dead center for my first ace.

And so, with that story goes this -- Steve Blass, share the wealth!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Have You Ever Played a Top-100 Course? just came out with their latest "Top 100 Courses You'll Never Step Foot On In the United States" and I was interesting to know ... has anyone ever played any of these courses?

I have not played a SINGLE top-100 course on the list, though I have played the 18th hole at the Olympic Club, Lakes Course, so I guess that is something.

The ones I'd most expect people to say they played are Bethpage Black and Torrey Pines, with Pebble Beach probably getting some love since all you have to do is drop some coin to get on those.

I've had my opportunity to play some of these courses, and will probably check Hilton Head off the list next month, along with Bandon Dunes in November. If you have played any, give us your number in the comments. Mine is zero. Beat that!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Why It's Tough to Take the Presidents Cup Serious

This afternoon, Greg Norman and Fred Couples took the stage to announce their 2009 Presidents Cup teams. Couples went with some basic picks that weren't too surprising ... he took Lucas Glover and Hunter Mahan, leaving Brian Gay, among others, on the bench.

Greg Norman, an Australian native, was, well, not so normal with his picks. His first choice was Ryo Ishikawa, which is obviously a little more flair and a little less experience. Ishikawa is only 17 (he will be 18 by the time the matches begin), and has a ton of talent, but the pick seems to be a stretch.

Well, until you see who else he snagged. Norman went with fellow countryman Adam Scott with his other choice. Adam. Scott. The guy who missed ten of 18 cuts, didn't qualify for the second tournament on the FedEx Cup playoff run and is currently ranked 184th on tour in all-around ranking. Scott had one top-10 all year, and it came in January, and hasn't finished in the top-33 since that same tournament.

Scott got picked because he's Australian, plain and simple. It's at the hands of the captain to pick up his two players, but he obviously didn't go with the two best for the job.

Rory Sabbatini was ranked higher. So was Jeev M. Singh, Shingo Katayama, and the list just behind Scott is worthy as well. You have K.J. Choi, Stephen Ames, Trevor Immelman and Andres Romero. These are guys that had better years. Guys that deserve to play for an International Team that has become truly international.

If this was the Ryder Cup, the pick wouldn't be done because of location. The Ryder Cup is all about winning. The Presidents Cup is more about appeal. If you don't believe me, look back at the MLB All-Star game tie that both teams decided on in 2003.

It will never be taken serious if the captains can't even take it serious.

Streeter Lecka, Getty Images

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Tiger Woods Is Phil Mickelson

All this talk about Tiger Woods not being as dominant as he once was must have finally caught up to El Tigre, because, dammit, he went all Phil Mickelson on us in the final round of the Barclays.

As you can't peel from your eyebrows, the picture above was Phil Mickelson after he missed an important putt, with an unfortunate soul standing behind him making the photo. This one of Tiger was just missing Steve Williams, standing behind him at oh such a perfect angle, and life would be complete.

Here is to hoping Fred Couples pairs these two for the Presidents Cup and we get some butt-bumps courtesy of the Solheim Cup team with Tiger and Philly.

A John Daly Contest!*

Alright, here is the deal.

You have to figure out which one of these two is John Daly in the above picture. I've left the largest version of this photo possible, courtesy of the amazing Getty Images, so you can blow it up on your computer.

A few things to keep in mind --

-- John has been known to dress a little "different" this season since his deal with Loudmouth Golf.

-- He has slimmed up, so don't be eying the overweight fellow anymore.

-- He may or may not be dressed like a bean bag chair I had in 1996.

Okay, guess away. The winner gets the $1,000,000 I was just told I won in my Gmail account from a person in Taiwan. I'm RICH!