Thursday, November 29

Happy 91st Birthday to Vin Scully and Scully Golf Anecdotes from Golf Digest's Mike O'Malley


It's easy to forget that the longtime Dodgers announcer also anchored golf broadcasts for CBS Sports. Golf Digest Executive Editor Mike O'Malley shared these Scully anecdotes.

Tuesday, November 27

VIDEO: The Highly Unorthodox Winning Golf Swing of Ho-sung Choi

I DOUBT IF ANYONE WOULD TEACH the golf swing of Ho-sung Choi. But that doesn't mean it's not highly effective. Choi won on the Japan Golf Tour and his unique action has gone viral, in a golf sense.

I'm not sure what to say about it. Let me just say that Choi has flair. He is a golf ... artist?

Others on social media said ...

"Walking through is always better than falling back"

"All that matters is where the club is at impact. Hope for all duffers"

"Dude stole my swing and won with it"

Monday, November 26

The Match Doesn't Deliver


The only thing I really wanted to know was who won, Tiger or Phil.

We all know Mickelson won on the 22nd hole. Now Lefty will have some measure of satisfaction that he beat the greatest of his generation in a head-to-head, made-for-TV match. And, as he made clear, Phil will needle Tiger about it for the rest of their days.

But what was in it, this hyper-marketed match, for the rest of us, that being the golf world and viewing public?

Not much, according to the reports I've read and skimmed. The aging titans played like aging titans. The banter wasn't that interesting, or was drowned out by the broadcast team. The pay-per-view technology was apparently a shank.

The Match had some people fondly reminiscing about the Skins Game, which died a natural death about a decade ago. The Skins Game was telecast over the Thanksgiving weekend and had some memorable moments, both of the tense and fun variety.

A week ago Golf Digest published "11 things you probably don't remember about the Skins Game."

One of those 11 things: the Skins Game was a ratings hit, as Golf Digest reported:
The Skins Game didn't just promise big bucks, it delivered big TV ratings. In fact, it was the highest-rated televised golf tournament in 1986. Yep, even higher than a certain sixth green jacket win by a certain Golden Bear that year at the Masters. And for its first 10 years of existence, the Skins Game's average weekend rating (5.65) topped that of the U.S. Open during that time. Why was this the case? Well, getting superstars to participate—Was that 1983 foursome of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and Tom Watson any good?—was a start. But yes, there was also the money, which leads us to …
The Match is over and I'll give golf credit for trying something new. But in the end I think this was mostly about Phil. After all, it was his idea. There may be some redemption for him in beating Tiger Woods, something for his "mantle."

For the rest of us, not much.

Monday, November 19

VIDEO: Charles Howell III Ends Long Winless Drought at RSM Classic in Georgia

AT THE RSM CLASSIC AT SEA ISLAND RESORT in St. Simons Island, Georgia, Charles Howell III shot a final-round 67 to finish 19 under and get into a sudden-death playoff with Patrick Rodgers. Howell III defeated Rodgers on the second playoff hole.

His third PGA Tour victory ended a winless drought of more than a decade.

"Sometimes you wonder, well, maybe you just don't have it in you," Howell III said. "Maybe today is just not the day. More than likely I won't be winning the golf tournament."

He added, "Quite honestly, I didn't know if I would ever win one again. I had come up short so many times."

A runner-up 16 times on tour, this time he got it done. Howell III sank a 15-footer to win the playoff, then fought back tears and hugged his wife and kids.

Friday, November 16

Brrr: How Cold Weather Affects Golf Ball Performance

IT'S COLD IN THE MID ATLANTIC. In fact, freezing rain was falling outside my window as I began to write this. I won't be playing golf anytime soon.

(Jeff Cushner/Flickr)
But if you're a cold-weather golfer, this information from Golf Digest might be helpful:
[C]old air can affect the performance of a golf ball. Cold air is denser than warm air and creates additional drag on a ball. According to Trackman, the difference is approximately one yard of carry for every 10-degree change in temperature. So theoretically, you’re looking at a loss of four yards if you’re playing in 40 degrees as opposed to 80 degrees. Other factors—such as how the body reacts to the cold, and how wearing extra layers likely limits your backswing—can further impact distance. The takeaway: When playing fall golf plan for at least an extra half club, and if your swing is restricted by being fully bundled up, it might even be a full club.
Also this ...
As for trying to keep golf balls warm, don't bother. For starters, Rule 14-3/13.5 prohibits warming a golf ball during the round. Warming up golf balls is not prohibited, but there is a reason for that—it doesn't work. Several years ago, Golf Laboratories performed a test that showed you could not get a ball warm enough to have any impact because the ball almost instantly adopts to the outside temperatures.
If you play golf in the snow, use an orange, green or pink golf ball. And go ahead and improve your lie. Winter rules apply.

Thursday, November 8

GOLF CENTRAL: LPGA Player and Her Caddie Disagree on Circumstances That Led to DQ

WHAT A MESS. The player, Doris Chen, explained what happened to her golf ball that resulted in a disqualification. But the caddie, Alex Valer, had a very different take.

In the vicinity of the incident was Chen's mother. Did the mother play a role?'s Randall Mell reported on the controversy at the LPGA's Q-Series.

Monday, November 5

VIDEO: Bryson DeChambeau Wins Shriners Hospitals for Children Open; Said 'Everybody Does It in a Different Way'

BRYSON DECHAMBEAU IS RED HOT. He fired a closing 66 to win the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open by a shot over Patrick Cantlay. It was win number five for DeChambeau on the PGA Tour, all of them bunched in the last 16 months.

DeChambeau is anything but orthodox in his approach to the game. It's working for him.

"More power to everyone that does it their own way," he said.

"Everybody is unique. Everybody does it in a different way. I believe I found a way that works really, really well for me and it allows me to be super consistent week in and week out."

DeChambeau climbed another spot in the world rankings, to No. 5. Meanwhile, Justin Rose reclaimed the top spot, displacing Brooks Koepka.

Thursday, November 1

Morning Drive: PGA's Mike Pickett and His Golf-Themed Pumpkins

I HOPE YOU HAD A GOOD HALLOWEEN. This is Mike Pickett, a PGA member whose favorite holiday is Halloween.

Is Mike better at golf or pumpkins? I wonder.