Originally Posted by tmac20
I don't know about you, but I'm trying to improve my game. Attacking pins makes you a better player. It provides a visual target whereas the middle of the green provides no visual target, which means you'll learn how to hit more accurate shots. It teaches you how to control your ball flight; hitting it in the middle of the green does not. It teaches you distance control better. It improves your short game by providing you with more opportunities around the green. I went from a 16 handicap to a 4.6 in two summers playing this style. And I will not change it.
The problem is, I have statistics and the OP's numbers in a study to back me (us) up. You basically have absolutely nothing backing up your opinion except apparently having a telepathic link to every tour player. And the idea that aiming at the center of the green won't make me control my ball flight is laughable. You control your ball flight by working on your swing not by picking a target that leaves you dead if you miss. Nothing can be more satisfying than a perfectly executed shot. I don't care if it's a layup or an approach or whatever. You should pick targets that don't put pressure on your game unless you're forced to.
You don't need the flag as a visual target, there are many shots where you can't see it from your lie; you can use background or foreground objects to mark your line. I view the way I'll play greens from now on as similar to what I do on tee shots (I hit a very good percentage of fairways), which is to be smart and pick the line that will give me a good approach, not jamming it against a bunker or trying to carry the water at the edge of my range.
It does not improve your short game. It will only force you to rely on it more. If you practice your short game it will already be good. I would rather hit as many greens as possible no matter the situation. Opportunities around the green are the same as saying you screwed the shot up; unless you're talking about pitching for eagle.
Congratulations on getting down to a 4.6 handicap. I'm trying to improve from my current handicap as well and I don't think continuing what I've failed to do successfully will help. I think I just need to take what I do well and use a strategy to make the most of it, not expecting my game to somehow allow me to flag it from long distance every time. If I had a nickel for every time I was a yard into the greenside rough last year I'd buy the book.