Always tried to hit these by playing the ball back, hands forward, and by hit down at a sharp angle and taking a divot (whether it's a chip from a couple yards off the green or a 20-70 yard pitch). Not much problem making consistent contact, but the stupid ball always, ALWAYS released with very minimal check.
Was working on this at the range to today and decided to try hitting pitches by open the face just a tad and without taking much of a divot. If anything just bruising the grass under and slightly in front of the ball. Lo and behold, almost every shot (accept the ones I skulled across the green hit, checked up and rolled out nice and gentle. I've always been under the impression that the amount of spin need for the ball to hop and stop requires a severe downward strike which means taking a bunch of turf.
Anyone have any idea or thoughts on why a cleaning "pick" of the ball seems to put a lot more backspin on the ball than sharp downward strike?