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Matt Kuchar allowed to repair an irregularity on the putting surface? - Page 3

post #37 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by 460CompMark View Post

This goes along the same lines as hitting your fairway shots out of old divots caused by groups in front of you.  It ridiculous that the guy in front of you had a perfectly nice lie, but now you are hitting out of his divot that he couldn't repair. That is not treating each player fairly. Doesn't make sense to me, but rules are rules.

 

Sure it is. That guy ahead of you could have hit into a divot made by the group before him, or even by himself the prior day, while you could get a nice kick off a sprinkler head and have only an 8-iron to the green of a par five.

 

You can't do much to regulate luck. It happens, and it's both good and bad.

 

And in Kuchar's case, the committee ruled that the green was badly damaged, so they fixed it - just as they could do if the cup was damaged, or an animal came out and dug up a portion of the green and it couldn't be repaired in time, etc. Frankly, the only thing I found interesting about it was wondering who missed a putt and then slammed their putter down and didn't bother to fix the damage.

post #38 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View Post

 

I don't think the "impossible to differentiate between spike marks and other irregularities" holds water either.  After hearing the rationale, I'm a bit more convinced that the spike mark rule should be changed.  An organic or natural irregularity is one thing, but damage from an external force (especially a competing golfer) walking along the green should be repairable.  Otherwise, it is inequitable.

Yeah, I think that in the days of steel spikes it could realllllllly slow down play because anal players could be there all day fixing spike marks.  Nowadays, spike marks are more rare than unrepaired ball marks or animal marks, so it wouldn't really slow down play at all.  More often than not, there is nothing to repair but if some guy shuffles his feet going to get his ball out of the hole, everybody after that is screwed.

 

This thread made me learn something new though ... I was always under the impression that spike marks were the only things you couldn't repair, whereas I am now learning that ball marks are the only thing that you can repair.

 

Hmmm, well there goes my valid handicap.  This further confirms I've only been playing a variant of golf. ;)

post #39 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

Frankly, the only thing I found interesting about it was wondering who missed a putt and then slammed their putter down and didn't bother to fix the damage.

 

Same thing I was wondering.  The only thing I knew for certain is that it wasn't Tiger nor Chappell, because they both made birdie from the other side of the cup.

post #40 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

Sure it is. That guy ahead of you could have hit into a divot made by the group before him, or even by himself the prior day, while you could get a nice kick off a sprinkler head and have only an 8-iron to the green of a par five.

 

You can't do much to regulate luck. It happens, and it's both good and bad.

 

And in Kuchar's case, the committee ruled that the green was badly damaged, so they fixed it - just as they could do if the cup was damaged, or an animal came out and dug up a portion of the green and it couldn't be repaired in time, etc. Frankly, the only thing I found interesting about it was wondering who missed a putt and then slammed their putter down and didn't bother to fix the damage.

True luck is both good and bad, but regulations can enhance or lessen the role luck plays.

 

Suppose that the committee didn't fix the putter impact in Kuchar's line.  Unless the guy who made it in front of him got fined, what incentive is there NOT slam your putter into the ground or drag your feet if you are in one of the first or middle groups on Sunday?  Sure, you'll get a bad reputation (which might hurt for endorsements, etc), but from a scoring standpoint you are making your own good luck by creating more situations where a player behind you may encounter bad luck.

 

Sure a ball may kick from the fairway into the woods or vice versa, but if the rules of golf permitted lift, clean and place in your own fairway only, it would remove a bit of the luck element in terms of the lie that you get or the effects mud might play on your ball.  Sure, you can argue that hitting out of a divot or less than perfect fairway lie is a skill (which I agree that it is), but you can't argue that winter rules don't help to eliminate 1 role that luck plays (aka the type of lie you get in your fairway).

 

Course set-up and design can also increase or decrease the role luck plays in the outcome- if you don't believe this, just look at mini golf.

 

In my ideal, the rules of golf and course set up should test skills while minimizing the role luck plays.  In the case of something like winter rules, fewer skills are tested, but luck is minimized so it is a bit of a trade-off in my book.

post #41 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree View Post

Suppose that the committee didn't fix the putter impact in Kuchar's line.  Unless the guy who made it in front of him got fined, what incentive is there NOT slam your putter into the ground or drag your feet if you are in one of the first or middle groups on Sunday?

 

Etiquette among peers, and that's all that's necessary. Plus gross etiquette violations can result in a DQ.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree View Post

Sure a ball may kick from the fairway into the woods or vice versa, but if the rules of golf permitted lift, clean and place in your own fairway only, it would remove a bit of the luck element in terms of the lie that you get or the effects mud might play on your ball.

 

A) This isn't the topic here.

B) d2_doh.gif

C) See A.

 

Now, back to topic, please.

post #42 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View Post

 

I don't think the "impossible to differentiate between spike marks and other irregularities" holds water either.  After hearing the rationale, I'm a bit more convinced that the spike mark rule should be changed.  An organic or natural irregularity is one thing, but damage from an external force (especially a competing golfer) walking along the green should be repairable.  Otherwise, it is inequitable.

Yeah, I think that in the days of steel spikes it could realllllllly slow down play because anal players could be there all day fixing spike marks.  Nowadays, spike marks are more rare than unrepaired ball marks or animal marks, so it wouldn't really slow down play at all.  More often than not, there is nothing to repair but if some guy shuffles his feet going to get his ball out of the hole, everybody after that is screwed.

 

This thread made me learn something new though ... I was always under the impression that spike marks were the only things you couldn't repair, whereas I am now learning that ball marks are the only thing that you can repair.

 

Hmmm, well there goes my valid handicap.  This further confirms I've only been playing a variant of golf. ;)

 

What I want to know is, who is finding spike marks on greens these days?  I just finished playing for the 4th straight day on 3 different courses and I haven't seen a single spike mark of any kind... not one.  Are you guys following an elephant in golf shoes?  Or are you playing in the Great Dismal Swamp?  We have had gallons of rain here for the last week, and I weigh nearly 300 pounds, yet not one mark have I left on any green.  When properly cared for, modern putting greens don't generally take a mark from soft spikes, and even on the rare occasion that they do, they spring back by the time the next group gets to the green.  

post #43 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

Are you guys following an elephant in golf shoes?
Have you seen my swing thread? It's the guys in the group behind me that are following an elephant in golf shoes. ;)
post #44 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

 

What I want to know is, who is finding spike marks on greens these days?  I just finished playing for the 4th straight day on 3 different courses and I haven't seen a single spike mark of any kind... not one.  Are you guys following an elephant in golf shoes?  Or are you playing in the Great Dismal Swamp?  We have had gallons of rain here for the last week, and I weigh nearly 300 pounds, yet not one mark have I left on any green.  When properly cared for, modern putting greens don't generally take a mark from soft spikes, and even on the rare occasion that they do, they spring back by the time the next group gets to the green.  

I agree that spike marks are much more infrequent these days, but they can be found at some courses.  We too have gotten a lot of rain recently and when I played late on Sunday I noticed several foot drags- they didn't look exactly the same as the metal spike foot drags, but they were noticeable.  Also, we have one or two greens that have more dirt/mud than grass, so you can definitely tell where people have been walking on those.

 

Even the PGA Tour is not immune to this- IIRC, Sergio chip the ball into the cup from about 5 feet instead of putting because he had some (spike?) damage between him and the hole about a month or two ago.

 

What is the rational for allowing ball marks to be repaired?  Intuitively it seems inconsistent to allow ball marks to be repaired and get relief from animal holes and severe putter head damage, but not allow spike marks to be repaired nor offer relief from animal foot prints- even when they are deeper/more severe than a regular ball mark.  

post #45 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

 

What I want to know is, who is finding spike marks on greens these days?  I just finished playing for the 4th straight day on 3 different courses and I haven't seen a single spike mark of any kind... not one.  Are you guys following an elephant in golf shoes?  Or are you playing in the Great Dismal Swamp?  We have had gallons of rain here for the last week, and I weigh nearly 300 pounds, yet not one mark have I left on any green.  When properly cared for, modern putting greens don't generally take a mark from soft spikes, and even on the rare occasion that they do, they spring back by the time the next group gets to the green.  

 

The ONLY time I've seen them is on TV in PGA events.  The truer the greens, the more they've stood out.  I've even seen some super-slow mo vids of a putt being altered by a spike mark.  It's definitely rare, but I don't see that as a mitigating factor.

post #46 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by saevel25 View Post

Honestly i hate the rule were you can't fix spike marks. I always thought it was stupid that you could fix ball marks, which a BALL (and outside object) caused, yet you can't fix a spike mark which a SHOE (outside object) caused.

 

I am guessing that it may have to do with speed of play, especially from the days with metal spikes.

post #47 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by phan52 View Post

 

I am guessing that it may have to do with speed of play, especially from the days with metal spikes.

 

No it has nothing to do with speed of play. Spiked golf shoes haven't been around for over 10 years now. Only a few golfers on tour wear them, most of the time there banned. Back when they were used, pace of play wasn't an issue.

 

I think the issue is that since people have to walk on the greens, then spike marks naturally become part of the green.

 

My issue is, that if a golf ball is played on the course, and people wear spikes, why can't we fix both on the green?

 

Honestly, it takes what, less than 20 seconds to walk down your line and fix a ball mark if it happens. It wouldn't add much to pace of play at all. You just tap the marks down with your putter.

post #48 of 64
Quote:

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by phan52 View Post

 

I am guessing that it may have to do with speed of play, especially from the days with metal spikes.

 

 

Originally Posted by saevel25 View Post

 

 

No it has nothing to do with speed of play. Spiked golf shoes haven't been around for over 10 years now. Only a few golfers on tour wear them, most of the time there banned. Back when they were used, pace of play wasn't an issue.

 

I think the issue is that since people have to walk on the greens, then spike marks naturally become part of the green.

 

My issue is, that if a golf ball is played on the course, and people wear spikes, why can't we fix both on the green?

 

Honestly, it takes what, less than 20 seconds to walk down your line and fix a ball mark if it happens. It wouldn't add much to pace of play at all. You just tap the marks down with your putter.

 

Rule 16-1

USGA Position on Spikemarks

Q. What is the USGA position on spikemarks?

A. The Rules of Golf are based on two fundamental principles: (1) play the ball as it lies and (2) play the course as you find it. Permitting the repair of spike marks on a player`s line of play or putt would be contrary to these fundamental principles. Rule 16-1c permits the repair of old hole plugs and ball marks but does not permit the repair of spike damage or other irregularities of surface on the putting green if they are on a player`s line of play or putt or might assist him in his subsequent play of the hole. The distinction lies in the fact that old hole plugs and ball marks are easily identifiable as such, whereas it is impossible to differentiate between spike damage and other irregularities of surface on the putting green. Permitting the repair of spike marks would also inevitably lead to a slower place of play. Please note that proper etiquette recommends that damage to the putting green caused by golf shoe spikes be repaired on completion of the hole by all players, just as a player should fill up and smooth over all holes and footprints made by him before leaving a bunker. We feel that improved education and players` consideration for others rather than a change in the Rules of Golf is the proper solution to the problem.

 

So yeah, it has something to do with the speed of play. As I said, I am pretty sure this position goes back to the days of metal spikes when there would be spike marks at every square foot, especially the closer you got to the hole where there was more foot traffic.

post #49 of 64

It might be speed of play but I think that it might also relate to a fairness issue- i.e. if a player taps down all marks directly in his line but not those just outside his line, he may putt the ball slightly off line and see it hit a spike mark and return to his line and go in the hole.  I agree that it is less of an issue overall now than in the days of metal spikes.

 

"A. The Rules of Golf are based on two fundamental principles: (1) play the ball as it lies and (2) play the course as you find it"

 

So how does fixing ball marks or lifting out of an embedded ball situation comply with these two fundamental principles?  Same question with Kuchar's situation?

 

In match play, playing the course as you find it makes a lot of sense, but in stroke play it seems like all competitors should be playing as similar a course as possible.

post #50 of 64

Using "pace of play" is simply a pretextual reason.

post #51 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asheville View Post

 

Here's the deal I'll offer you. You may move your ball out of the "bad luck" divot hole. In exchange, each time you hit your golf ball into the woods and it hits a tree and takes a "good luck" rebound out of the woods, you have to put it back in the woods.

 

 

That makes no sense.  This isn't about luck.  It's about the guys in front of you properly filling/replacing their divots.  So your deal is invalid.  Next.

post #52 of 64

Can we have these divot rules discussions in one topic please?

 

And to stay on topic, Matt was not allowed to fix the damage on putting green.

post #53 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree View Post

If your balls were already on the green, then I think the answer is that you were allowed to fix the damage because it occurred after your ball came to rest.  If the damage happened before, then you have a Kuchar type situation of which there seems to be some disagreement on how it should be ruled.

 

In equity, if the damage is going to be repaired for the rest of the field behind you, I don't understand why it would not be fair to repair it for you also.

To be clear, the damage was done before we hit our balls onto the green.  From ~ 100yds out with our wedges, we couldn't see that a jackwagon had taken his horse across the green.  But when we reached the green, it was clear as day what had occurred.  Huge hoof prints in the surface of the green from one side to the other... And crossing right by the hole.

post #54 of 64

Rule 16: The Putting Green

http://www.usga.org/Rule-Books/Rules-of-Golf/Rule-16/

 

16-1 c. Repair of Hole Plugs, Ball Marks and Other Damage


The player may repair an old hole plug or damage to the putting green caused by the impact of a ball, whether or not the player’s ball lies on the putting green. If a ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved in the process of the repair, the ball or ball-marker must be replaced. There is no penalty, provided the movement of the ball or ball-marker is directly attributable to the specific act of repairing an old hole plug or damage to the putting green caused by the impact of a ball. Otherwise, Rule 18 applies.

Any other damage to the putting green must not be repaired if it might assist the player in his subsequent play of the hole.

 

Penalty for breach of Rule 16-1:

Match Play: Loss of Hole

Stroke Play: Two Strokes

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