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Subaroo

Ball stuck in its own pitch mark

21 posts in this topic

Hit a nine iron to a very soft green, the ball never came out of its (idk what to call it...) divot/pitch mark.  BUT, it wasn't on the green, it was about an inch into that fairway type grass around the green so I am not allowed to fix it, right?

I didn't know what to do so I just played it how it was.  Ended up using a putter, the ball popped out wildly.  I had a long putt after that which I made to par the hole!  I was excited about that.  What is the rule on this?  Can you pull a ball out if it is stuck in fairway grass like this?  and would it have been different if it were on the green?

But come on now!  Look how close that was!  I was so stoked until I walked up and saw that I 'missed' the green.  Baloney.  I hit a good shot I'll take it.

About two inches from the green.

After putting it out.

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Actually, under rule 25-2 you're entitled to relief for a ball embedded in it's own pitch mark, in any "closely mown" area through the green. Closely mown is defined as cut to fairway height or less, so the fringe of the green would have qualified. You also would have been allowed to clean the ball in taking relief, which consists of dropping the ball as close as possible to the original spot, not nearer the hole. Great job getting up and down out of the pitch mark though!
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Good for you for making the putt!
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You are entitled to relief, but you are not allowed to repair the pitch mark until after you play your stroke.  You can lift and clean the ball, then drop it as close as possible to the pitchmark, but not closer to the hole.  If it rolls back into the crater, you drop again.  If it rolls back again, then you place the ball where it first hit the ground on the last drop.

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Had this happen yesterday, also on a par 3, except it was not in the fringe but the next cut ... basically the rough.  Sounds like I was not entitled to the relief I took.  On the other hand, the grass was so soft, it was borderline casual water.  But is casual water only applicable in the fairway?  If so, it's pretty unfair that they would have a large patch of unplayable mud 10 feet off the green of a 220 yard par 3.

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Originally Posted by Golfingdad

Had this happen yesterday, also on a par 3, except it was not in the fringe but the next cut ... basically the rough.  Sounds like I was not entitled to the relief I took.  On the other hand, the grass was so soft, it was borderline casual water.  But is casual water only applicable in the fairway?  If so, it's pretty unfair that they would have a large patch of unplayable mud 10 feet off the green of a 220 yard par 3.

Casual water comes under Rule 25 and applies anywhere through the green .  The rules also allow a local rule to be used in certain circumstances which makes relief available for an embedded ball through the green (meaning in the fairway or rough).  The PGA Tour has that local rule in force for all of its competitions.  When you aren't playing a competition, you and your group serve as your own "committee", and if conditions are as sloppy as you describe, you would be warranted in declaring that local rule to be in effect for your own group.

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Thanks guys.  So I could have taken a drop.  What if this happens on the green though?  Can I just mark my ball, fix the pitch mark and replace my ball?  Or do I still have to drop it.  I've never seen anyone take a drop on the green.

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Originally Posted by Subaroo

Thanks guys.  So I could have taken a drop.  What if this happens on the green though?  Can I just mark my ball, fix the pitch mark and replace my ball?  Or do I still have to drop it.  I've never seen anyone take a drop on the green.

On the green you are allowed to mark and lift your ball anyway, and you are also allowed to repair any pitch marks, yours or anyone elses.  You would mark, lift, clean, repair the pitch mark, then when your turn comes to putt, place the ball on that spot and play as normal.  It's good incentive to learn how to properly repair a pitch mark when you are in a position where you have to putt from or across one you repaired.

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Originally Posted by David in FL

Actually, under rule 25-2 you're entitled to relief for a ball embedded in it's own pitch mark, in any "closely mown" area through the green. Closely mown is defined as cut to fairway height or less, so the fringe of the green would have qualified.

You also would have been allowed to clean the ball in taking relief, which consists of dropping the ball as close as possible to the original spot, not nearer the hole.

Great job getting up and down out of the pitch mark though!

Our course isw in a valley and we cam often get very wet conditions. When the course is wet, we use the exceptipn allowed, which is anywhere through the green . Not in hazards, of course.

4. Course Conditions – Mud, Extreme Wetness, Poor Conditions and Protection of Course

a. Lifting an Embedded Ball, Cleaning

Temporary conditions that might interfere with proper playing of the game, including mud and extreme wetness, warranting relief for an embedded ball anywhere through the green or permitting lifting, cleaning and replacing a ball anywhere through the green or on a closely mown area through the green .

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Mark, clean (if you like), and place the ball as near to the original lie as possible, without advancing the ball nearer to the hole; without penalty.  The USGA has extended the playing area to include all other areas not designated a hazard or impeded by the intended design of the course (i.e brush, etc.).  If you had been on the green, you would mark, lift, clean and place as near to the pitch mark as possible (to the side, not behind) and repair the damage after striking the ball.

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Originally Posted by stangmark

Mark, clean (if you like), and place the ball as near to the original lie as possible, without advancing the ball nearer to the hole; without penalty.  The USGA has extended the playing area to include all other areas not designated a hazard or impeded by the intended design of the course (i.e brush, etc.).  If you had been on the green, you would mark, lift, clean and place as near to the pitch mark as possible (to the side, not behind) and repair the damage after striking the ball.

Come on! Has USGA really removed the "closely mown" from the rules? And since when you have not been allowed to fix pitch marks when on green?

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Originally Posted by stangmark

Mark, clean (if you like), and place the ball as near to the original lie as possible, without advancing the ball nearer to the hole; without penalty.  The USGA has extended the playing area to include all other areas not designated a hazard or impeded by the intended design of the course (i.e brush, etc.).  If you had been on the green, you would mark, lift, clean and place as near to the pitch mark as possible (to the side, not behind) and repair the damage after striking the ball.

All pure bull.  You don't place, you drop.  And the USGA has NOT made any such change.  There must be a local rule in effect for relief through the green .  On the putting green, you mark, lift, repair the pitch mark, then replace the ball on that spot and putt from there.

Anyone looking for actual answers, ignore this guy.

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I was going to say I always repair my plugged balls pitch mark on the green before replacing it and putting out. Seems unfair to have to putt over a crater.

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I was going to say I always repair my plugged balls pitch mark on the green before replacing it and putting out. Seems unfair to have to putt over a crater.

As you say, you can always repair it on the green. He wasn't on the green, nor was the mark. If the pitch mark is off the green and is in your line, you may as well chip over the mark if it is going to interfere with a putt.

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So, regardless of where my ball lies i can repair any pitch mark on the green at any time, right?  But pitch marks off the green, regardless of who/when made the mark, cannot be  repaired if they are in my line of putt; my ball off the green, right? My ball on the green all pitch marks, both on and off the green, can be repaired, right?

And always place ball on the green, never drop. And sometimes place ball, sometimes drop through the green. Right?

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Originally Posted by joekelly

So, regardless of where my ball lies i can repair any pitch mark on the green at any time, right?

Yes, Rule 16-1c....unless it's in another players line, it's his turn to play, and he does not want it repaired.

But pitch marks off the green, regardless of who/when made the mark, cannot be  repaired if they are in my line of putt; my ball off the green, right?

Yes**, Rule 13-2  You can not improve lie, stance, line of play, reasonable extension passed hole.

** Exception to R13-2 If the ball mark was created in your line of play by another ball after your ball had come to rest then, in this case, you could repair a ball mark say in the fringe for example, that was on your line.  You are entitled to the lie and line of play you had when your ball came to rest.

My ball on the green all pitch marks, both on and off the green, can be repaired, right?

Yes, see answers above.... Rule 16-1c  But keep in mind, just because your ball is on the green, it does not mean you could fix a ball mark off the green that would improve your partner's line who was still off the green.

And always place ball on the green, never drop. And sometimes place ball, sometimes drop through the green. Right?

Most of the time....however 4 rules allow dropping a ball on the green.

R24  Relief from obstruction (ball lies in bunker)

R25  Relief from abnormal ground condition (ball lies in bunker)

R26  Relief from lateral water hazard (ball lies in the hazard)

R28  Ball unplayable  (ball not in hazard)

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Originally Posted by joekelly

But pitch marks off the green, regardless of who/when made the mark, cannot be  repaired if they are in my line of putt; my ball off the green, right?

If the pitch-mark was created afte r your ball came to rest, by another player's ball say, then you are intitled to the lie you had and may  repair it.

http://www.usga.org/Rule-Books/Rules-of-Golf/Decision-13/#13-2/8

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Hey Rulesman,

I'm guessing you missed this in my answer...........I get very wordy. I doubt you are implying relief was available for lie only.  I called it an "exception" which probably isn't the best choice of words.  Just so there is no confusion for others, the player is entitled to his original lie AND line of play.

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