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Unplayables in a Bunker - Let's Change a Rule of Golf! - Page 2

post #19 of 180

Keep away from bunkers.

Look at the course planner. They usually say   'Here be Dragons'. :scared:

post #20 of 180
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post

In your OP you asked "Why, should a bunker penalize a player more than a water hazard?"  I understood that to mean you wanted the outcome from hitting into an unplayable situation in either hazard to be similarly penal.

Dropping from a hazard gives you relief from that hazard. Not so from a bunker.

That's all that meant.

That's also why I'd like to just see the paragraph deleted.
post #21 of 180

Erik, I've heard your position argued before, even by the Director of Championships for a very large regional golf association. Though it has merit, apparently, the RBs consider that being able to play the ball out of a sand-filled bunker is a fundamental skill which must be retained in the game.

post #22 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asheville View Post
 

Erik, I've heard your position argued before, even by the Director of Championships for a very large regional golf association. Though it has merit, apparently, the RBs consider that being able to play the ball out of a sand-filled bunker is a fundamental skill which must be retained in the game.

Can I take from this then that the Ruling Bodies fear that if people were allowed to drop outside of a bunker, then some people would do that EVERY TIME they went into one?

 

If so, I think that is a pretty irrational fear, considering that I know some awful, AWFUL golfers, whose handicaps are in the high 20's and even low 30's and there is no way even they would take that penalty in almost all situations.

post #23 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post
 

Can I take from this then that the Ruling Bodies fear that if people were allowed to drop outside of a bunker, then some people would do that EVERY TIME they went into one?

 

If so, I think that is a pretty irrational fear, considering that I know some awful, AWFUL golfers, whose handicaps are in the high 20's and even low 30's and there is no way even they would take that penalty in almost all situations.

 

 

I just don't get why bunkers are so special. Heck lets say a person was in some 6 inch tall rough. just on the top lip of a bunker. He would have a crazy hard shot to make, near impossible stance. Couldn't he in theory take an unplayable lie, drop it in the bunker for a better lie? I'm just saying, nothing is stopping someone from dropping a ball in the bunker, why are they not allowed dropping it out of a bunker. 

post #24 of 180

A ball in the middle of the bunker with a good lie is not the problem. Having the ball buried at the edge of the bunker is sometimes pretty impossible to hit.

 

On the other hand, even considering the most terrible lies inside a bunker, there is always some way to hit the ball to the side or even backwards towards the grass outside the green and then chip it to the hole. This is almost equivalent to the penalty you would incur if you could declare the ball unplayable and be allowed to place the ball outside the bunker.

 

I don't think it's that much of an issue.

post #25 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by arturo28mx View Post
 

A ball in the middle of the bunker with a good lie is not the problem. Having the ball buried at the edge of the bunker is sometimes pretty impossible to hit.

 

On the other hand, even considering the most terrible lies inside a bunker, there is always some way to hit the ball to the side or even backwards towards the grass outside the green and then chip it to the hole. This is almost equivalent to the penalty you would incur if you could declare the ball unplayable and be allowed to place the ball outside the bunker.

 

I don't think it's that much of an issue.

 

This is a bit off the original topic, but what's with your suggestion to "place the ball"?   The unplayable ball Rule requires that you drop the ball.  "Placing" the ball is always an advantage compared to dropping, and the Rule requires it to be dropped.  It results in a more random outcome.

post #26 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

Can I take from this then that the Ruling Bodies fear that if people were allowed to drop outside of a bunker, then some people would do that EVERY TIME they went into one?

If so, I think that is a pretty irrational fear, considering that I know some awful, AWFUL golfers, whose handicaps are in the high 20's and even low 30's and there is no way even they would take that penalty in almost all situations.

Gotta agree. That just doesn't make sense to me.
post #27 of 180

Just don't call it golf.  :beer: 

 

 

Sorry, couldn't resist!

 

On a serious note, its an interesting idea.  No strong feelings one way or another, so I probably wouldn't change it.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post
 

Can I take from this then that the Ruling Bodies fear that if people were allowed to drop outside of a bunker, then some people would do that EVERY TIME they went into one?

 

If so, I think that is a pretty irrational fear, considering that I know some awful, AWFUL golfers, whose handicaps are in the high 20's and even low 30's and there is no way even they would take that penalty in almost all situations.

 

What about the less extreme version of that--taking the penalty stroke on any difficult bunker shot?  In other words, any lie that would make you think "uh oh, I might not get out of here" or where you might chip out sideways under the current rules.  Fried eggs, close to a lip, awkward stance, really high lip in front of you, etc.  I'm not really disagreeing with you, just presenting this for the discussion.

 

post #28 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by dsc123 View Post
 

What about the less extreme version of that--taking the penalty stroke on any difficult bunker shot?  In other words, any lie that would make you think "uh oh, I might not get out of here" or where you might chip out sideways under the current rules.  Fried eggs, close to a lip, awkward stance, really high lip in front of you, etc.  I'm not really disagreeing with you, just presenting this for the discussion.

 

That's possible, but I think it would still be extremely rare.  None of your examples lead me to believe that there is a definite situation where I'd gain an advantage by dropping outside of a bunker.  In all of those cases, I'd choose to play the shot because I would bet that I'd always be able to advance it further, or to a better spot than "within 2 club lengths of the point my ball last crossed into the bunker."

 

The only recent time I've ever taken an unplayable in a bunker, I had hit a pretty decent shot on my line and came up about one foot short of clearing the bunker and being on the green putting for birdie ... and that very top of the bunker had really soft sand such that the ball buried itself COMPLETELY.  It took us awhile to even find it because it was 100% covered by sand.  Now, with the rules as they are, if it weren't for the fact that I had to cover the ball back up, I'd still probably have played it, because the likely result is that it pops up a few inches, then slides down to the bottom of the bunker leaving me with a decent lie.  Whereas, having to drop leaves me with that fun, half-buried lie.  With Erik's rule, I'd be happy to back up and drop it on the grass.  That is the only situation (off the top of my head) where I'd take advantage of this potential rule revision.

post #29 of 180

An interesting suggestion from iacas which led me (again) to think Rules 25-1 and 24-2 as well.

 

If your ball is in a bunker and you have interference by casual water or immovable obstruction you are entitled to drop your ball outside the bunker with one penalty, even if you would have a decent place to drop your ball within the bunker (with no penalty). Why can you do that but you cannot choose to drop outside the bunker at your free will?

post #30 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by dsc123 View Post
 

What about the less extreme version of that--taking the penalty stroke on any difficult bunker shot?  In other words, any lie that would make you think "uh oh, I might not get out of here" or where you might chip out sideways under the current rules.  Fried eggs, close to a lip, awkward stance, really high lip in front of you, etc.  I'm not really disagreeing with you, just presenting this for the discussion.

 

 

I think this is an excellent point.  During my visit to Scotland I had the opportunity to hit a fair number of shots sideways from fairway bunkers.  If one of my options had been to take an unplayable and drop outside the bunker, that would have been a wise choice.  Hitting out sideways (or backwards) was not a sure thing.  Hit it too hard and you end up in another bunker or heavy rough.  Make a poor attempt and you are still in the bunker.  It was relatively rare to have a shot toward the green except when in a greenside bunker so if the Rules allowed a drop, one would rarely opt to hit out.

post #31 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post
 

 

I think this is an excellent point.  During my visit to Scotland I had the opportunity to hit a fair number of shots sideways from fairway bunkers.  If one of my options had been to take an unplayable and drop outside the bunker, that would have been a wise choice.  Hitting out sideways (or backwards) was not a sure thing.  Hit it too hard and you end up in another bunker or heavy rough.  Make a poor attempt and you are still in the bunker.  It was relatively rare to have a shot toward the green except when in a greenside bunker so if the Rules allowed a drop, one would rarely opt to hit out.

 

Here in a nutshell is the reason why I hesitate to support the OP suggestion. Golf is a game of skills as well as wit. If you get yourself in trouble you should be able to get you out of it.

post #32 of 180
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post
 

I think this is an excellent point.  During my visit to Scotland I had the opportunity to hit a fair number of shots sideways from fairway bunkers.  If one of my options had been to take an unplayable and drop outside the bunker, that would have been a wise choice.  Hitting out sideways (or backwards) was not a sure thing.  Hit it too hard and you end up in another bunker or heavy rough.  Make a poor attempt and you are still in the bunker.  It was relatively rare to have a shot toward the green except when in a greenside bunker so if the Rules allowed a drop, one would rarely opt to hit out.

 

Meh. It's a boring shot, and effectively a one-stroke penalty.

 

The game would not suffer by removing the paragraph which forces players to play a boring stupid shot away from the hole or backwards, also again effectively penalizing a player more than a water hazard from which they can drop nearby.

 

My opinion, yeah, but that's why I started the thread.

 

Plus, it may produce interesting strategies. You'd still have players trying to go out sideways because it might offer a better angle for their next shot.

post #33 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

Meh. It's a boring shot, and effectively a one-stroke penalty.

 

 

Not more boring that a chip sideways from woods. Might be more demanding, though.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

Plus, it may produce interesting strategies. You'd still have players trying to go out sideways because it might offer a better angle for their next shot.

 

Not to mention more time spent players thinking their strategy...

post #34 of 180

After thinking about this some and reading all the differing opinions, I am okay with forcing a player to drop in the bunker when taking an unplayable.  First of all, a truly unplayable ball in a bunker just doesn't happen that often.  Second, the decision to take an unplayable should be a significantly painful one.  If the option to accept a one stroke penalty and drop outside the bunker were offered, too many of us less skilled players would probably make the smart decision and take the drop.

 

I take my play on the 2nd hole at the Old Course last summer as a good example.  I found myself in a greenside bunker very close to the front lip as well as the left edge of the bunker.  So close to the left edge that I was working on whether to kneel and hit, kneel on my left knee with the right foot in the bunker, play to the left away from the bunker, etc...  The smart play, if one could drop out of the bunker, would have been to just drop out of the bunker.  Of course that was not an option.  Dropping in the bunker and playing my 4th shot from a better spot in the bunker made little sense.  So I manufactured a shot while kneeling on one knee.  Yes, I made bogey anyway but somehow the experience of playing the Old Course would have been diminished by dropping out of that lie on #2. 

post #35 of 180
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post
 

After thinking about this some and reading all the differing opinions, I am okay with forcing a player to drop in the bunker when taking an unplayable.  First of all, a truly unplayable ball in a bunker just doesn't happen that often.  Second, the decision to take an unplayable should be a significantly painful one.

 

I disagree that it should be more painful than dropping your ball out of a water hazard.

 

The equivalent would be that you had to drop your ball in the mud and/or super long grass and muck just inside a water hazard every time you hit into that. You're taking the same one stroke penalty.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post
 

If the option to accept a one stroke penalty and drop outside the bunker were offered, too many of us less skilled players would probably make the smart decision and take the drop.

 

A) I don't think that many people would do it that often.

B) It's still a one-stroke penalty, and you're no closer to the hole or green. You've still got plenty of chances to screw up.

 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post
 

I take my play on the 2nd hole at the Old Course last summer as a good example.  I found myself in a greenside bunker very close to the front lip as well as the left edge of the bunker.  So close to the left edge that I was working on whether to kneel and hit, kneel on my left knee with the right foot in the bunker, play to the left away from the bunker, etc...  The smart play, if one could drop out of the bunker, would have been to just drop out of the bunker.  Of course that was not an option.  Dropping in the bunker and playing my 4th shot from a better spot in the bunker made little sense.  So I manufactured a shot while kneeling on one knee.  Yes, I made bogey anyway but somehow the experience of playing the Old Course would have been diminished by dropping out of that lie on #2. 

 

You always have the option to not do it. Again, I don't think people would do it all that often. Even playing out of the Road Hole bunker, people have holed out from there, yet obviously accepting the penalty is foregoing holing out and just adding a stroke.

post #36 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

I don't think that many people would do it that often.

 

My experience in playing with a large cross section of the golfing public leads me to believe that it would become fairly common.  There are a lot of golfers out there that really struggle with bunker shots.  If given the option of dropping out, we would see many players taking that option.  Not on the PGA Tour or among highly skilled players but by that large mass of low skill players that make up the golf population I belong to.  Soon there would be articles in magazines extolling the common sense of taking the drop rather than attempting to hit from a fried egg or plugged lie.  That would be a fundamental change in the game.

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