Monday, August 2, 2010

57, 58, 59, Oh My!

When I was still in high school, I went out on a random Sunday to play 18 holes with the popular money game at my home golf course in East Texas. The games are usually whatever you want them to be, at whatever amount you can afford, and with just about every golfing ability known to man. That day, I was paired with two older gentlemen that would be tickled to death if they shot 76, and one younger guy that played mini tour golf and was the big enchilada around Marshall Lakeside Country Club.

I had a bet with the youngster, and he went out and shot a course record 61. Needless to say, I lost. What is important here is the number. A 61. It was the best round I'd ever witnessed. In 2010, on the PGA Tour, it might not even make the top-10.

That's because for some reason, wether it be Wile E. Coyote posting up under most of the greens with a magnet for the balls, or just luck at its best, some of the best rounds in golf history have been shot this year. On Sunday, Stuart Appleby added his name to the list of sub-60 rounds in PGA Tour history, posting an 11-under 59 to win the Greenbrier Classic by a shot. It isn't the kind of rounds you dream of (those are 65s on Sunday at Augusta, because even the best golfers in the world don't have the subconscious imagination to come up with a 59 to win an event), it's the rounds you think can't happen, but in 2010, it is just another round that makes us mortals shake our heads.

Appleby joins Paul Goydos as guys that broke 60 on the PGA Tour, and can hang with Ryo Ishikawa, who shot a 58 on Sunday in a Japan Tour event to win, and young Bobby Wyatt, who shot a 57 last week in a high school tournament.

No clue on why the 50-something gauntlet has been thrown down, but I guess it poses the question, how long until we see a 57 or 58 in a PGA Tour tournament? At this point, it sure seems likely.

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