Originally Posted by MyrtleBeachGolf Even with all the statistics, I'm still hitting 9iron to 105 and then a nice smooth wedge in. I could pull my 4 hybrid and try to hit up there about 200 yards, but there's a 30% chance I hook it or push it. Then I'm looking at bogey. Even if I hit it perfect down the left side, I'm not confident a 35 yard pitch shot is going to get inside 15'.
Then you're likely costing yourself strokes.
The #100 player in the world only hits the green from that distance 75% of the time. Look up the stats. You're looking at bogey there too, and if you are playing from the rough short of the bunkers but near the green.
People who have a 30% chance of hooking or pushing a 200-yard club are also not the kind of people who stick it to 20' on average from 100 yards, if you get my drift… I won't get into it here, but the analysis actually tends to scale pretty well.
I'm making these up but they'll demonstrate what I mean:
From 105 yards, the PGA Tour player averages whatever it is I said above. What, 1.83 strokes or so, roughly.
From 105 yards, a scratch golfer averages just over 2 strokes.
From 105 yards, a 9 index averages 2.2 strokes.
From 105 yards, an 18 index averages 2.9 strokes.
From 105 yards, a 27 index averages 4.3 strokes.
Getting closer to the green lowers your average score… so long as you can avoid BIG trouble (trees, bunkers, hazards). So basically, you'd want to figure out your own percentages - you'd have to find your own sweet spot of balancing a longer shot in with a longer layup (second shot).
Originally Posted by MyrtleBeachGolf
But the statistics do make me think about it more. My regular playing partner ALWAYS tries to hit it as far up on par 5's as he can, leaving a shorter 3rd. I ALWAYS lay up to a good distance 115-105 for me. Most of the time I walk away with par. And although he has more birdies with his strategy, he also makes more doubles. I'll have to rethink my strategy (and work on my shot from 30yards and in).
He's seriously screwing up if he's making doubles, unless he routinely hits it into trouble when he gets near the greens.
Keep thinking. That's all the thread was designed to help anyone do - evaluate, re-evaluate, think. There's no "right" answers, and everyone's game is a little bit different.
Originally Posted by RandallT
If we apply this to intermediate players, then we would have to know the probability of executing each layup shot too. As MyrtleBeach says, hitting it as close as possible has a lower probability of success than punching something to 100yd out. Would I rather be 20-30yds out than 100? Yes. But not if I can only get there 50% of the time and I can get to 100yds out 80%. The actual percents are made up, of course, but the point is that your book will have analysis for scratch players (who can be considered close enough to PGA stats) and those of us above handicaps of 10 or so will still need to do our own risk/reward calculations.
50% versus 80% is only part of the equation. What if you can only get to 100 yards 80% of the time and then only hit the green within 50 feet of the cup 50% of the time. Now you're looking at 40% to get within 50 feet on the green.
Originally Posted by boil3rmak3r Really?? So you'd rather pitch from well off the green than putt to the hole from the bowl? That surprises me. Most of us would much rather have a tricky putt for eagle than a touchy pitch to get up and down for birdie...
I feel like you failed to read the part where hitting the green is only going to happen 43.8% of the time… and three-putting from the bowl will be fairly frequent.
Originally Posted by boil3rmak3r
The bunker shot you could end up with should still be a more high percentage option than the pitch. If not, the golfer has identified a glaring weakness and should work on that. Also, In my experience, if they aren't good out of the bunkers, they won't be good pitching....
I disagree that a 40+ yard bunker shot is easier shot than a pitch straight up the slope of the green from the fairway.
Originally Posted by boil3rmak3r I don't think there's a single "correct" answer to this question. For me, just short of the green is the right choice. If we adjust for our distances and the shot is 20 yds shorter (I.e. you are 20 yds longer than me(I'm going for that bowl.
And if you're freakishly good at hitting a 215-yard cut, it'll pay off. If you're not, it probably won't given the severity of the "punishment" around the green. But you're right that there's no one "correct" answer.
Originally Posted by cipher
That is some great stuff. I was under the assumption that scrambling was a little higher at that level and the so was the percentage of hitting the green. I will admit I was wrong, as I was strongly for going for it. I guess I just did not see the risks for a good player to make a bogey in doing so.
Most of the time, as I hoped to illustrate with the other three examples, there really isn't a penalty. That's why "go for it" is a big deal on the PGA Tour.
But this green is unique. It punishes misses harshly.
That's also why I said that if the green was in the bowl, you go for it (and not just because it becomes a 220-yard shot).