Titleist 909H Hybrid Review

Titleist’s second generation “true hybrid” improves greatly on the first and challenges for the title “best.”

Titleist 909H HybridMy history with hybrids is a bit different than most. I still carry a 3-iron and can’t see giving it up any time soon. I generate enough swing speed and hit with the right amount of downward and sweeping action that I can hit a 3-iron just fine. This same swing tends to produce some poor results when I put a hybrid intended to replace the 3-iron in play.

As such, for years, I’ve relegated the hybrid to a spot between my 3-iron and my 3-wood. Hybrids from various makers, from about 16 to 18 degrees in loft, have occupied this slot at various times. The Titleist 503.H, more like a 2-iron than a hybrid, held the role until I moved onto the much-adored TaylorMade Rescue Dual TP. After realizing that I had a hard time keeping the ball down, I switched back to Titleist’s PT 585.H.

The 585.H was a great hybrid: it looked great, it felt great, and most importantly to me, I could adjust the trajectory to suit my needs. If it had a down-side, it’s that it was prone to the occasional snapper, as I often discovered on my home course’s long par-three seventh hole.

So when Titleist introduced the 909H, I was intrigued. As I stated in our widely read Sneak Peek, the 909H improves on the 585.H by offering progressive head sizes, shapes, offset, and CG to further optimize launch conditions across the range. A little birdie told me, too, that the tendency of the club to go left fast was reduced. I was pumped.

The Stories of 2009

Lie angles, Tiger, the Race to Dubai… Oh my!

Trap Five LogoThe 2009 golf season is underway, despite what the foot of snow and ice outside my door would indicate. Out in Arizona, the Loudest Golf Tournament in the World is underway. Down in Florida, the PGA Merchandise Show is providing first looks at lots of new toys.

It should be an interesting year of golf. Will the younger players continue to win tournaments? Is Sergio about to make good on the promise he’s shown for years? Will Vijay’s success in the FedExCup carry over in 200? Can Kenny Perry continue to win on the PGA Tour as he nears 50? And just how badly will the economy hit the game we love?

These and other questions remain to be answered in 2009. Here are five of what, if not the absolutely biggest, will certainly be among the most interesting stories to watch.

A Crime of Passion

The following is my elaborate rationalization for spending $400 on a custom Slighter Tacoma.

Thrash TalkI, Benjamin Alberstadt, being of sound mind and body, confess that I did recently spend $399.95 on a putter. Is there any possible justification for such behavior? In this period of economic downturn, is there any excuse for acquiring such a liability? Perhaps not. After all, the unusurpable king of the retail putter market, Scotty Cameron, only charges about $300 for a production putter.

In the world of $500 drivers and $300 greens fees, the average golfer has to make a real effort to spend significant coin on a putter – Cameron Circle T’s, other tour issue, or limited availability models are the common bandits, in that regard. However, I accepted the challenge… and succeeded admirably.

Golf Talk [Episode 103]

It’s really tough to watch guys playing golf in Hawaii when you’re just hoping not to have to shovel snow again in the next two hours.

Golf Talk PodcastA short episode: John Daly, Tiger Woods, Zach Johnson, Pat Perez, Geoff Ogilvy, Golf Channel’s “coverage”, and a little bit more in this episode of Golf Talk.

You can subscribe to the RSS feed for our podcasts here or download Episode 103 as an MP4 file. For those who want to subscribe to us in iTunes, click here.

For this week’s Show Notes – links to articles we discuss in the show and additional information – just read on.

Volume One Hundred Seventy Five

Pat Perez gives a long awaited sigh of relief

Hittin' the LinksHello golf fans and welcome to another edition of Hittin’ the Links. I am coming to you a day late this week but still full of all the best stories one might hope to find perusing the golf Internet.

In this newest volume of HTL, we first take a look at Pat Perez’s long-awaited first victory, check in on a guy who has shot his age 100 times, and investigate a very pregnant winner of the LPGA event in Brazil. Also we see what’s brewing at the Hall of Fame, take note of the World Golf Rankings, and listen up to what Bob Vokey has to say. Read on!

TaylorMade Launches R9, Burner Irons, and Rescue 2009 Hybrids

TaylorMade tosses out enough options to make gear heads drool.

Bag DropTaylorMade Golf has released their 2009 golf lineup and it’s a doozy. Boasting some pretty snazzy technology and giving you enough options to make your head spin, TaylorMade has something to offer to every level of golfer from the high-handicap duffer to the gearhead who tweaks his clubs after every round.

Yes, we quite frequently poke fun at the folks at TaylorMade for releasing a new driver every other week, but once in awhile they release some equipment that causes you to stop what your doing and pay attention. And they have some of that with this new lineup. How good is it? Ask Pat Perez who won the Bob Hope over the weekend with the R9 driver in his bag. So join me as we see the latest and greatest from the folks at TaylorMade.

Nine Holes with Boo Weekley

What’s not to like about a guy who wears camo and fights apes?

ProfilesThe odds-on favorite to win this year’s Verizon Heritage is Boo Weekley. He’s won the last two, so why not add one more?

What’s a little more of a mystery is why he hasn’t won anywhere else. In two full seasons on the PGA Tour, he’s had ten top-ten finishes, but has only managed to finish at the top of the leaderboard at Hilton Head. Obviously, the course suits him. It’s a ball-striker’s layout, it’s in the South (where Boo grew up), and with its small greens, putting is less likely to be the determining factor in a tournament.

Getting Your Golf Fix In Two Feet of Snow: Stash the Clubs and Open a Book

Have a look at a few standouts I recently knocked off my reading list.

Thrash TalkSometime during the past week, immersed in the post-holiday languor, I revisited one of my favorite golf books from the past decade.

I am not a great fan of David Leadbetter. His accent and 17 Trion-Z accessories (they ought to come out with an “ionic” band for his inane hat) generally annoy me. However, it must be acknowledged that the man knows his stuff, both with respect to helping an individual improve and to poseessing an acute understanding of the historical development of the golf swing.

The Sand Trap Rules Quiz Number Three

Tournament rules, read them, know them , love them

USGA LogoSorry for the TST Rule Quiz hiatus, Sand Trappers, but I am back and ready to test your rules knowledge. I mean you can never know the rules too well, right?

In this third installment of the Rules Quiz, we delve into some useful rulings for tournament play. My hope is that after reading this someone out there who is sitting on the fence trying to decide whether or not to start playing in their club’s tournaments will feel confident enough to go ahead and join up. The rules are there to help you, and for the most part are fairly simple if you get the basics down. For all the lesser known rules, you can carry a USGA Rule Book. The point is there is never anything bad about playing by the rules.