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Official 2013 U.S. Open at Merion Discussion Thread - Page 35

post #613 of 685
I guess I may be in the minority, but I prefer the winner of MOST tournaments around the -5 mark. Although I do undestand that things are different at the U.S. Open and that's one of the reasons it's very special. The problems I personally do NOT like with the winner finishing above par is that the players seem to worry more about being safe. Which is sometimes the best routes, but no one is going to remember a playing laying up from the rough to get a better lie so that he can get on the green and ultimately win the Master's, but we will all remember Bubba's miraculous shot out from the trees which high extrememly high risks and even higher rewards. I want to see the professionals make the shots that I can not. Which is most mind you, but it's the risks that we remember.
post #614 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by phan52 View Post

Interesting piece about the "logistics" at Merion.

http://espn.go.com/espn/story/_/page/usopenreilly130613/sure-merion-quaint-a-good-thing

IMO, Merion is a great golf course. I have played it many times, the property is about the same size as my home course and I have found that the greens are the distinctive difference from my course (Whitemarsh Valley, built in 1908 by George Thomas). The PGA had an event at my course for 18 years but the idea of having a PGA event there now, and particularly a Major, is laughable for multiple reasons. But I can tell you that the USGA could trick it up to the point that they could protect the score, maybe not to the level of Merion because of their greens, but they could make it tough. Narrowing the fairways, eliminating the first cut, stimping the greens well into the teens,making the long holes longer, the USGA can make any great old course tough. I can identify a dozen in the Philly region that fit this profile. But by doing so, they are changing the intent of the original designs. I don't think Hugh Wilson intended for the third hole at Merion to be a par 3 hole where great players have to hit driver, like Luke Donald had to do on Sunday. The fifth hole was built with that left canter all the way throuhg the hole, but there is supposed to be a decent stand of rough before the creek, not just a few yards.  I don't understand why par is so important to these people. Seeing the best players in the world come through 17 on Sunday with numbers like +14, +15, +16 and +17 was absurd. Sometimes I think that they are not identifying the best player, just the luckiest.

JMO.

There's something to be said for the different sort of game it takes to win a tournament where your goal is to not bogey instead of to make birdie.

To the extent where you could say every event finds the luckiest player and not the best (or else the top 3 players would win every time like in tennis), unless the U.S. Open setup goes full unfair 2004 Shinnecock, there's no more luck involved.
post #615 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by tide View Post

I guess I may be in the minority, but I prefer the winner of MOST tournaments around the -5 mark. Although I do undestand that things are different at the U.S. Open and that's one of the reasons it's very special. The problems I personally do NOT like with the winner finishing above par is that the players seem to worry more about being safe. Which is sometimes the best routes, but no one is going to remember a playing laying up from the rough to get a better lie so that he can get on the green and ultimately win the Master's, but we will all remember Bubba's miraculous shot out from the trees which high extrememly high risks and even higher rewards. I want to see the professionals make the shots that I can not. Which is most mind you, but it's the risks that we remember.

I generally agree with you that it is more fun and memorable to be aggressive, but I do remember David Toms laying up and winning the PGA.  The Masters is great because so much can happen, especially with good aggressive shots on 13 & 15.  The Masters is always exciting to watch regardless of the winning score which says a lot about the design of Augusta.

 

I just started a thread about good golf course design because it seemed a bit off topic for this thread

http://thesandtrap.com/t/67818/what-is-good-golf-course-design  

post #616 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamo View Post


To the extent where you could say every event finds the luckiest player and not the best (or else the top 3 players would win every time like in tennis), unless the U.S. Open setup goes full unfair 2004 Shinnecock, there's no more luck involved.

There is a lot more luck involved in a game like Golf than Tennis, but I only think this is pat of the reason that the top 3 don't always win.  Golf is more mental and I think the level of players games varies more day to day (in part) because of it.  I also think the fact that one player influences the shots the other player has to hit in Tennis makes it different than golf where it is the player vs the course (which changes a lot more day to day with some courses suited better to some players, much more extreme than variations in surface in Tennis).

post #617 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

I would highly doubt that.  I don't think the players play the PGA tour because the courses are easy, but rather because that's where the most money and best competition is.  Harder courses leading to higher scores isn't going to bring purses down.

 

I think that its an effort to set up the courses hard enough to bring down the scores and only the USGA cares enough to do so.  And like I said before even they "cheat" to do it.  By that, I mean they oftentimes take the shortest par 5 (2 at Pebble, for example, or 6 at Torrey) and just call it a par 4.  Voila, now you guys are, for all intents and purposes, starting the tournament at +4.

 

Good points all around. Didn't think about the purses. 

 

I still would like to see maybe 1 or 2 more difficult tournaments played throughout the year. I think the US Open can relate to some amateurs mostly because, like the rest of us, the pros are struggling to make or break par. 

post #618 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by geauxforbroke View Post

 

It's pointless to complain about it since everyone has to play it. Especially when you're one of the longer players on tour. 

 

Exactly
post #619 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPMPIRE View Post

I still would like to see maybe 1 or 2 more difficult tournaments played throughout the year. I think the US Open can relate to some amateurs mostly because, like the rest of us, the pros are struggling to make or break par. 

I would too.  Anytime I see a tournament where the winner is in the single digits under par I think it's nice, and if they just narrow those fairways or lengthen that rough a tiny bit, they could probably easily bring it down to -4 or -5.  Tournaments where pars mean something, and birdies are really earned are fun to watch.

 

EDIT: Tournaments where the CUT is at -3 or 4??  Not so much.

post #620 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by tide View Post

..... I personally do NOT like with the winner finishing above par is that the players seem to worry more about being safe. ............ I want to see the professionals make the shots that I can not. Which is most mind you, but it's the risks that we remember.

 

I was thinking I don't care about the score as long as the winner has the lowest score and they all play the same course.

 

But this post resonates with me.

 

I don't mind scores being near par at all - and whatever it takes to make that happen.  But even so, there absolutely must be a few holes with significant risk vs reward options so we can continue to be amazed on occasion.  Whatever it takes to keep that element in play does make it so much more interesting.

post #621 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by geauxforbroke View Post

 

It's pointless to complain about it since everyone has to play it. Especially when you're one of the longer players on tour. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonTheSavage View Post

 

Exactly

 

Honestly, I didn't even understand what he was complaining about.  He hit a great drive, turned around and said something about the distance of the hole being "bullsh**."  I'm assuming he means because he still wouldn't be able to reach in two, but I don't understand why.  Does he feel that tour players are entitled to reach par 5s in two with good drives, like they can't be longer than a specific distance?

 

If that was his concern, maybe he should have put driver in the bag for those 10 extra yards.

post #622 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View Post

 

 

Honestly, I didn't even understand what he was complaining about.  He hit a great drive, turned around and said something about the distance of the hole being "bullsh**."  I'm assuming he means because he still wouldn't be able to reach in two, but I don't understand why.  Does he feel that tour players are entitled to reach par 5s in two with good drives, like they can't be longer than a specific distance?

 

If that was his concern, maybe he should have put driver in the bag for those 10 extra yards.

 

Wait...Phil lets out a BS bombs and no one in the media is trying to call him out on that?!

 

To me, it sounds like a false sense of sympathy he's trying to express on behalf of the other shorter hitters. He knows damn well he can hit it long and distance for a hole isn't the issue. It also could be he was frustrated because none of the holes, including par 5s, are no guaranteed birdies that he needed to tie Rose. 

post #623 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPMPIRE View Post

 

Wait...Phil lets out a BS bombs and no one in the media is trying to call him out on that?!

 

To me, it sounds like a false sense of sympathy he's trying to express on behalf of the other shorter hitters. He knows damn well he can hit it long and distance for a hole isn't the issue. It also could be he was frustrated because none of the holes, including par 5s, are no guaranteed birdies that he needed to tie Rose. 

But if this was uttered on a par 5 then he didn't need to tie Rose yet, because the last par 5 is the 4th hole. :)

 

I also remember somebody in the chat Sunday pointing out that Hunter Mahan mumbled something similar after the driver par 3 hole.

 

Speaking of the media, I'm still waiting for Bob Costas to go off on Merion ...

 

 

Quote:

Merion Golf Club
450 Ardmore Avenue, Ardmore; 610-642-5600

f it’s not broken, don’t fix it. That seems to be the attitude at Merion Golf — for better and worse. The club’s legendary East Course, site of more USPGA tournaments than any other in the nation, is still among the best in the world. (Golf Digest last year ranked it seventh nationwide.) It’s hosted some of golf’s most memorable moments, including Ben Hogan’s famous one-iron shot at the 1950 U.S. Open. It was one of the first clubs to allow single women to join, and still has one of the best women’s amateur teams in the area. But more than 100 years after its founding, it remains mostly a haven for rich white men. Women at the club follow an unwritten — but understood — restriction against teeing off on the East Course before 1 p.m. on Saturdays. And while the men have an expansive locker room, Merion recently cut the women’s changing area nearly in half — to make space for a new conference room. Meanwhile, the club has few minority members. “There’s a built-in, unspoken discrimination,” says one member. “And no one seems too keen on doing anything about it.” (The club’s general manager did not return phone calls.)

post #624 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPMPIRE View Post

 

Wait...Phil lets out a BS bombs and no one in the media is trying to call him out on that?! 

 

Phil could probably murder someone with a 5 iron and the media would stick up for him. He has become untouchable for some reason.

post #625 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

But if this was uttered on a par 5 then he didn't need to tie Rose yet, because the last par 5 is the 4th hole. :)

 

Okay. I wasn't sure which hole this was uttered, but I thought he was referring to hole 17 and 18. Either way, a long hitter shouldn't whine about the course on the final round after playing it the last 3 days. By that time, the course difficulty should be a given. 

 

Edit: No player should complain about the course after playing the practice rounds. 


Edited by RPMPIRE - 6/18/13 at 2:43pm
post #626 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPMPIRE View Post

Okay. I wasn't sure which hole this was uttered, but I thought he was referring to hole 17 and 18. Either way, a long hitter shouldn't whine about the course on the final round after playing it the last 3 days. By that time, the course difficulty should be a given. 

Agreed.  None of them should ever whine about the course setup (except when it's really warranted, like Olympic's 18th green on Thursday several years ago), because they all play the same course.  If it doesn't quite suit your game, wll tough s**t.  During a Golf Channel special on Lee Trevino last night there was a clip from Jack Nicklaus saying something like "you never worried about whether or not the course fit your game ... you should worry about fitting your game to the course."

post #627 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPMPIRE View Post

 

Either way, a long hitter shouldn't whine about the course on the final round after playing it the last 3 days. By that time, the course difficulty should be a given. 

 

He shouldn't whine about the course on any day. Everyone has to play the course from the same tees. Same reason people should never complain about course conditions or weather.

post #628 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by geauxforbroke View Post

 

Phil could probably murder someone with a 5 iron and the media would stick up for him. He has become untouchable for some reason.

 

I know Im gonna sound like a hater but I was really rooting against him on Sunday. After Stricker faded I was rooting for anybody but Phil.
post #629 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonTheSavage View Post

 

I know Im gonna sound like a hater but I was really rooting against him on Sunday. After Stricker faded I was rooting for anybody but Phil.

 

I was pulling hard for Rose or Day. Both have had a solid career so far, but haven't been able to make that breakthrough. Rose really played a solid tournament and deserved it. 

post #630 of 685
Quote:
Originally Posted by geauxforbroke View Post

 

I was pulling hard for Rose or Day. Both have had a solid career so far, but haven't been able to make that breakthrough. Rose really played a solid tournament and deserved it. 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by RonTheSavage View Post

I was really rooting against him on Sunday. After Stricker faded I was rooting for anybody but Phil.

 

I was thinking the same as you both on Sunday. Jason Day needs to start performing a lot better at other tournaments and not just the majors. 

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