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Cantankerish

What Would You Hit Here?

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I think I am experiencing a brain fart.  Ball comes to rest some 20 yards off the green, maybe 15 feet of green to work with after that.  It's maybe 4 feet elevated.  No other obstacles.  Let's say a flat-ish green. Medium rough lie and the same stuff to up to the fringe.  Decent lie in that rough.  I hope I covered enough detail.  I am not great at chipping that far with the sand wedge. I am so tempted to try to flop something with the sand wedge or maybe a tiny pitch because I do not want to deal with rolling through the rough with a pitching wedge so close to the top of the arc.  Insufficiently loft just a bit and I will end up parking the ball before it gets to the green.  Somehow, with no specific obstacles in the way, the shot options all seem so risky.  I seem to be encountering this scenario a lot these days.  I feel like this should not be such a difficult decision, but I just do not see what the conventional wisdom would dictate.

What would you do?  What am I not seeing clearly here?

Edited by Cantankerish
clarity

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As a 15.4 cap....just hit a normal pitch onto the green.....make sure to hit enough to land the ball on the green and not leave it short....hopefully the worse you'll be 20 ft past the hole.

You want to make sure you get up and down in no more than 3 strokes...obviously 2 strokes is ideal.

Yes, if you have the skill to flop it...then do so...again not leaving the ball short.

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If I have only 15 feet to work with and I’m hitting from rough to an elevated green, I’d probably hit a 58-degree pitch shot, maybe open it up a degree or two. My wedges are rock-solid right now.

Edited by dagolfer18

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6 hours ago, Mr22putt said:

As a 15.4 cap....just hit a normal pitch onto the green.....make sure to hit enough to land the ball on the green and not leave it short....hopefully the worse you'll be 20 ft past the hole.

You want to make sure you get up and down in no more than 3 strokes...obviously 2 strokes is ideal.

Yes, if you have the skill to flop it...then do so...again not leaving the ball short.

This, exactly.

Err long.  Do NOT leave it short of the green.  

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Probably a stock chip with a SW. I wouldn't try to hit a flop. Too risky for me. As one guy already said, I'd make my miss long. At least I'd give myself a putt to get up and down. 

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4 hours ago, dagolfer18 said:

If I have only 15 feet to work with and I’m hitting from rough to an elevated green, I’d probably hit a 58-degree pitch shot, maybe open it up a degree or two. My wedges are rock-solid right now.

Just remembered that I ran into a situation similar to this in my round yesterday. Like the OP, this was an elevated green, but the main difference was that I had to pitch over a bunker to a semi-tight pin, a pitch shot of probably fifty feet. I opened up my 58 a little and hit a decent shot to five feet.

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9 hours ago, Cantankerish said:

I think I am experiencing a brain fart.  Ball comes to rest some 20 yards off the green, maybe 15 feet of green to work with after that.  It's maybe 4 feet elevated.  No other obstacles.  Let's say a flat-ish green. Medium rough lie and the same stuff to up to the fringe.  Decent lie in that rough.  I hope I covered enough detail.  I am not great at chipping that far with the sand wedge. I am so tempted to try to flop something with the sand wedge or maybe a tiny pitch because I do not want to deal with rolling through the rough with a pitching wedge so close to the top of the arc.  Insufficiently loft just a bit and I will end up parking the ball before it gets to the green.  Somehow, with no specific obstacles in the way, the shot options all seem so risky.  I seem to be encountering this scenario a lot these days.  I feel like this should not be such a difficult decision, but I just do not see what the conventional wisdom would dictate.

What would you do?  What am I not seeing clearly here?

Seems like a standard short pitch shot to me. Do you have trouble getting height on your pitches? Four feet isn’t a lot of elevation.

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If I understand the scenario, it's 25 yards to the pin, but lots of space behind the pin.  I'd hit a 30 yard pitch.  Why 30?  I know my swings to various increments, and while I have one that is about 25 yards if I have a little bit of non-green to cover and then lots of rollout, I don't trust that it'd finish on the green when I'm short sided.  I'd far rather ensure I'm on the green than being just off.  That's a situation where I limit damage rather than going for the marginal chance of getting up and down versus a chance of taking a big number.  Get it on the green, even if it's 20 feet past the pin, and sharply reduce the chance that it takes you more than three strokes to get down.

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As a 16 HCP it would be pitching wedge onto the green with as much elevation as possible so the ball does not run out too far.  Likely 3 shots into the hole.

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On 8/22/2020 at 8:54 PM, Cantankerish said:

What would you do?  What am I not seeing clearly here?

I'll second what some others are saying here. For me this would be a pitch onto the green, probably with a high lofted wedge, with the main goal to not leave a second short game shot to get on the green. Seems like missing long and being on the green is better than leaving it short and having a second pitch or chip.

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It all depends on the lie. Mediocre lie or if there's any concern that there's going to be grass between my club and the ball, I'd use my 58, square the face, and pitch to the edge of the green but erring on being long over short. My expectation is to be 10-20 feet from the hole, anything within 10 feet is going to be pretty good. If I know that I can get the club on the ball without interference, particularly if the ball is sitting up, then I'd be more aggressive. In this case I'd open the 58 and hit a lofted pitch / lob shot - I don't like the term flop, that's what pros do and it's much more aggressive and vertical than my lob. In this case, given the right lie and green speed,  I have pretty good confidence of getting it to 10 feet and sometimes closer. If I come up short, I should be close enough to the green to use putter and have a routine two putt.

As a warning: 1. the pros swing hard when hitting a flop - that's why the ball goes straight up and stops - I swing much slower and the ball goes lower, so it doesn't stop near as fast but I also don't have the bladed flop shot; 2. A flaw is to swing only using your arms - swing your body with the arms; 3. Practice on the range a few times before putting into play - I've practiced this a lot.

 

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I truly appreciate the thoughtful responses.  I learned a lot from them.  In particular, I have been choosing the tiny pitch shot, figuring a lot like what gbogey says here.  (I don’t flop well.)  But I was not sure that was the smart call.


Pitching is a relatively new skill for me, and I am still feeling out it’s best applications.  This confirms one for me.

So again, thank you all 

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7 hours ago, Darkfrog said:

I'll second what some others are saying here. For me this would be a pitch onto the green, probably with a high lofted wedge, with the main goal to not leave a second short game shot to get on the green. Seems like missing long and being on the green is better than leaving it short and having a second pitch or chip.

So I played in a group Sunday with a scratch and a 3 along with myself and an 8. The 3 and the 8 both short sided themselves like you are describing with a bunker short and the 8 hits it 20 past the pin and the 3 hits it 15 feet past with a safe high lofted wedge shot. The scratch says good shot, you couldn't do much better. So lets look at that statement coming from a really good player. Both guys hit the shot they knew they could hit. They both had a putt to save par. They didn't hit the hero shot and leave themselves with an even worse predicament, they got it on the green and gave themselves a chance. It was just a reminder that sometimes the smart play is to take what the course gives you and do something you can pull off 95% of the time and you will at worse walk off with bogey. 

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