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If you could change ONE rule, what would it be?

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Yeah, I think you kind of missed the point of the thread.  Under what rule?  Well, the rule that he is MAKING UP RIGHT NOW because the thread is specifically about CHANGING the rules.

You can't argue that a rule he wants to hypothetically change can't be done because it's currently against the rules to do so.  That makes no sense.

-------------------------------------------

Personally, I have no problems hitting from out of divots ... I kind of like the challenge.

And I can't think of a rule that I'd like changed off the top of my head.  The rules are pretty rock-solid to me, I think.


I couldn't help but laugh reading your comment. It reminded me of a professor I had one time that used to start a lot of his test questions with "In your opinion" (for some reason). Always amazed me when he marked my opinions wrong. :-D

There's really no wrong to a rule somebody would like to see changed. Maybe unnecessary or unpopular but not wrong.

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Does it have to be non-ambiguous? ...

I feel like you guys are being a little too, I don't know, stand-off-ish, maybe, with this.  If somebody is talking about making it so you don't have to hit it out of a divot hole, then they're basically saying that you should have a clean lie each time your ball is on grass ... i.e., their saying that we should always play winter rules.

So, to answer the question in this hypothetical thread about new rules, why can't it simply be ... if it looks like it might be a divot hole, then it is?  Simple as that.  Drop your ball onto a perfect piece of grass, and play away.

I really don't like coming across "stand-off-ish" but where does the whole, "I should always get a perfect lie" even come from any way?

Maybe the first question that should be asked is that.......should you be entitled to a perfect lie every shot?  Would you enjoy the game more or less if that were the rule?

I vote no, and a LOT less.

Because no two people can always agree on what is or isn't a divot hole.

C'mon, Barney, you've seen enough of these discussions to know that nobody's overcome that point yet. A player says "my ball's in a divot hole." Another player says "nah, looks like it's healed up." Or maybe he thinks it's a footprint and not a divot hole at all.

And quid pro quo being what it is, pretty soon it becomes agreed upon that everything is a divot hole.....

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I dont like when the caddy stands behind the player as he is addressing the ball to putt. The caddy helps the player line up the putt just before he strokes the putt should be illegal in my opinion.

I think the caddy can help but not when the player starts addressing the ball.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Fourputt

With the guys I play with most often, two players will sometimes play at the same time.  No reason not to if you are in the rough on opposite sides of the fairway and not disturbing each other.  Order of play is irrelevant in stroke play, despite the wording of the rule.

I agree with that @Fourputt .  But these guys I've played with act like your not there.  I would set up to hit and they would ignore that and hit anyway. I avoid them whenever possible.

Rule or no rule, you can't always depend on all people respecting your space.  I don't see it as a reason to change a rule, but instead as a reason to educate the person.  If we changed a rule every time we played with that sort of person, there are probably several others which would fall by the wayside.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dchoye View Post

I dont like when the caddy stands behind the player as he is addressing the ball to putt. The caddy helps the player line up the putt just before he strokes the putt should be illegal in my opinion.

I think the caddy can help but not when the player starts addressing the ball.

That's a rule change I'd support right now.

Some language is needed (a player could simply never sole the club) to say maybe "after a player takes his stance or addresses the ball" but otherwise I like it.

Quote:

Addressing The Ball

A player has “ addressed the ball” when he has grounded his club immediately in front of or immediately behind the ball, whether or not he has taken his stance .

BTW I can respond to this because I'm not immediately saying "that won't work!" :D

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There is only one rule that I have any issue with, and my complaint is just the scope of the rule, not its intent.  That is Rule 25-2 - Embedded ball.  I feel that the language "closely mown area" should be amended to read "through the green".  The reason is that this is the only rule where any attempt is made to specify "fairway".  There is no good reason that I can think of to make this distinction.  In fact, there is a local rule in the book which does change that terminology, so why not simplify things and just make it the standard?

An embedded ball which is not in a hazard is clearly in abnormal ground, regardless of whether it is closely mown or not, so relief should be given in all of a definable portion of the course, i.e. through the green.

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Originally Posted by Meltdwhiskey

When does a divot hole cease to be a divot hole?

At the same point in time a burrowing animal hole ceases to be a burrowing animal hole

No, that doesn't cut it. A hole is a hole. When it's filled in, it's no longer a hole. Divot holes (despite being incorrectly named "holes") can be partially filled in.

Please answer the question. Provide a definition for a divot hole that does is non-ambiguous. The pornography definition of "I know it when I see it" doesn't apply here.

Please answer the question. Provide a definition for a divot hole that does is non-ambiguous.

I promise I don't have the passion about this particular subject to continue this.  It was just a thought I had that it seemed a bit unfortunate to hit into a divot.  I might be able to spend some real time on it and come up with a bullet proof definition, but I am not. I will however start with one that might suffice for the situations I am thinking of.

You get free relief if your ball is in the scar left on the ground that a golfer of knowledge and prudence would say was clearly the result of a divot and caused by a player and his club, and further, the scar must have not healed in any significant way - not even what the aforementioned golfer would consider 10% healed, but what he would consider a fresh, unhealed scar.  For further clarification, please use the graphic:

I see this on the golf course and I don't have any reservations about saying this golf ball is in a divot (or divot hole or divot scar or grassless spot created by a golfer swinging his club).

A hole is a hole. When it's filled in, it's no longer a hole.

The groundhog hole can carry similar ambiguity as this divot situation.  When the hole is 6 inches deep, it is easier to see.  But what about when it is 1 inch deep? 5/6 inch deep? 3/4 inch deep? 2/3 inch deep?  1/2 inch deep?  1mm deep???

The point is, a divot, as you have pointed out, will look different over time until it there is no remnant of it.  The same is true of a groundhog hole that is abandoned.  It gets shallower and shallower over time and is subject to the elements or grass growing over it, etc.  And there is a point in time that the previous home of that groundhog will be ruled 'not a hole' anymore.

The clarity with which you can determine groundhog holes, I feel I can do the same with a fresh divot.

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You get free relief if your ball is in the scar left on the ground that a golfer of knowledge and prudence would say was clearly the result of a divot and caused by a player and his club, and further, the scar must have not healed in any significant way - not even what the aforementioned golfer would consider 10% healed, but what he would consider a fresh, unhealed scar.

There are too many words in that which require their own definitions. What's 10%? What about a player who sprinkles a little sand/seed - is that 10% healed?

I see this on the golf course and I don't have any reservations about saying this golf ball is in a divot (or divot hole or divot scar or grassless spot created by a golfer swinging his club).

I don't think many people would disagree on that example.

The problem comes from the other many divots which are not so "fresh" and which are in varying rates of recovery.

A hole is a hole. When it's filled in, it's no longer a hole.

The groundhog hole can carry similar ambiguity as this divot situation.  When the hole is 6 inches deep, it is easier to see.  But what about when it is 1 inch deep? 5/6 inch deep? 3/4 inch deep? 2/3 inch deep?  1/2 inch deep?  1mm deep???

Those aren't holes. Certainly not by a groundhog… WTH? Furthermore, burrowing animal holes are far less common than even divot holes, which are not very common anyway (for a ball to land in a divot hole), and they're easier to distinguish.

Groundhog hole: http://flaggashland.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/mister-groundhog-hole.jpg

And FWIW, I’d just as soon remove the bit about “burrowing animal holes.” I think it’s largely outdated. Probably dates back to the time when courses were barely more than old fields. So I say just remove it. If there’s a groundhog hole, mark it as GUR or play it as it lies.

----

Now, given what I wrote above, please stop responding to me on this issue, as I just wish to let this thread alone for awhile. Thanks.

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I really don't like coming across "stand-off-ish" but where does the whole, "I should always get a perfect lie" even come from any way?

Maybe the first question that should be asked is that.......should you be entitled to a perfect lie every shot?  Would you enjoy the game more or less if that were the rule?

I vote no, and a LOT less.

I couldn't come up with a better word, and that's why I said "I don't know, standoffish, maybe" ... to try and make it clear that even I think that is not describing it too well. :beer:

To answer your question ... I don't know.  But if somebody is advocating that they shouldn't have to hit balls out of divot holes, then I can only assume that they are the ones who think its "unfair" to have to ever hit from a less than perfect lie ... especially when they hit it in the fairway.

I'm with you though.  The unpredictibility of the game is part of its charm.  Having to occasionally hit from a divot hole is one extra challenge.  And the exhiliation felt after successfully doing so is really really high.

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I couldn't come up with a better word, and that's why I said "I don't know, standoffish, maybe" ... to try and make it clear that even I think that is not describing it too well.

To answer your question ... I don't know.  But if somebody is advocating that they shouldn't have to hit balls out of divot holes, then I can only assume that they are the ones who think its "unfair" to have to ever hit from a less than perfect lie ... especially when they hit it in the fairway.

I'm with you though.  The unpredictibility of the game is part of its charm.  Having to occasionally hit from a divot hole is one extra challenge.  And the exhiliation felt after successfully doing so is really really high.

This exactly!  I'd rather save par out of a divot, or other poor lie, than to roll the ball to a perfect lie and make birdie.

I'd like to see a player allowed to lightly tap down a spike mark.  I understand the reasoning for not touching the line, but I think we could roll that exception into the one allowing repair of a ball mark.

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Please answer the question. Provide a definition for a divot hole that does is non-ambiguous.

I promise I don't have the passion about this particular subject to continue this.  It was just a thought I had that it seemed a bit unfortunate to hit into a divot.  I might be able to spend some real time on it and come up with a bullet proof definition, but I am not. I will however start with one that might suffice for the situations I am thinking of.

You get free relief if your ball is in the scar left on the ground that a golfer of knowledge and prudence would say was clearly the result of a divot and caused by a player and his club, and further, the scar must have not healed in any significant way - not even what the aforementioned golfer would consider 10% healed, but what he would consider a fresh, unhealed scar.  For further clarification, please use the graphic:

Nope, should not get relief from any sort of divot. How can you measure 10%? What if the course had a ton of rain the day before and the divots were abnormally large. How do you tell if a divot is 10% healed or not? Do we all start breaking out the ruler and say, "Oh its 4 inches wide, I get relief". Its an absurd though. Lets say you hit the ball under neath some tree cover, and your in some non grassy area. Do you get relief from that? What makes the fairway so special?

This exactly!

I'd rather save par out of a divot, or other poor lie, than to roll the ball to a perfect lie and make birdie.

Absolutely. I never want to turn in to Judge Smails!!!

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G'day. Been a lurker for over a year. Great site, I've learned a lot about rules and equipment. Sorry to belabor the point but I am somewhat passionate on this divot topic and I believe it will one day be changed. I would guess the same argument some are making around the ambiguity of defining a divot was made when they introduced repairing ball marks on the green. I've had rare occasion to question whether it was a ball mark and had to consult my playing partners to confirm. To my knowledge there is no time standard or size standard relative to ball marks. If the mark was deemed to have been created from a pitched ball, one is entitled to repair it. A bit ambiguous, no? I believe the same standard could be held to divots. 99% of the time it's obvious but on those rare occasions it's not, consult playing partners and live by the consensus. Doesn't matter in what state of repair the divot is in, free drop if partners concur. Seems pretty fair. I would allow this in the fairway only.

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Welcome to the site. Whats ambiguous about a ball mark?-They dont look like spike mark scratches, heel prints-Etc. Worst case if something isnt a ball mark it is not a big deal.-You cant say the same about divots-THey can be quite nasty and are just bad luck (you get good luck too) when you land in a bad one.[quote name="Gunther" url="/t/7089/if-you-could-change-one-rule-what-would-it-be/162#post_959072"]I would guess the same argument some are making around the ambiguity of defining a divot was made when they introduced repairing ball marks on the green. I've had rare occasion to question whether it was a ball mark and had to consult my playing partners to confirm. To my knowledge there is no time standard or size standard relative to ball marks. If the mark was deemed to have been created from a pitched ball, one is entitled to repair it. A bit ambiguous, no? [/quote] SOmeone said it above-But divots are almost never 99% obvious. A week-old divot could be half-filled in with grass. [quote]I believe the same standard could be held to divots. 99% of the time it's obvious but on those rare occasions it's not, consult playing partners and live by the consensus. Doesn't matter in what state of repair the divot is in, free drop if partners concur. Seems pretty fair. I would allow this in the fairway only.[/quote]

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G'day. Been a lurker for over a year. Great site, I've learned a lot about rules and equipment.

Sorry to belabor the point but I am somewhat passionate on this divot topic and I believe it will one day be changed.

I would guess the same argument some are making around the ambiguity of defining a divot was made when they introduced repairing ball marks on the green. I've had rare occasion to question whether it was a ball mark and had to consult my playing partners to confirm. To my knowledge there is no time standard or size standard relative to ball marks. If the mark was deemed to have been created from a pitched ball, one is entitled to repair it. A bit ambiguous, no?

I believe the same standard could be held to divots. 99% of the time it's obvious but on those rare occasions it's not, consult playing partners and live by the consensus. Doesn't matter in what state of repair the divot is in, free drop if partners concur. Seems pretty fair.

I would allow this in the fairway only.

Once again, the rules don't define any part of the course as "fairway".  The rules recognize teeing ground, through the green, hazards, and putting green.  That is the entire course.  No fairway.

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Once again, the rules don't define any part of the course as "fairway".  The rules recognize teeing ground, through the green, hazards, and putting green.  That is the entire course.  No fairway.

And it would be impossible to add a definition for the fairway into the rules to facilitate this potential (hypothetical) rule change?

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And it would be impossible to add a definition for the fairway into the rules to facilitate this potential (hypothetical) rule change?

We could even rename it.  Maybe call it "That place on the course where you should never have bad luck, or a bad lie, and therefore don't have to play the ball as it lies".......

.....a little wordy, but it kind of rolls of the tongue once you get used to it. :-D

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We could even rename it.  Maybe call it "That place on the course where you should never have bad luck, or a bad lie, and therefore don't have to play the ball as it lies".......

.....a little wordy, but it kind of rolls of the tongue once you get used to it.


They already have a shorter name for that. The PGA Tour has been using it for years when they play LCP. They call it "Closely mowed areas".

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The rule I would like to see changed is eliminating the penalty for hitting the flagstick in the hole when on the green.  This is just mostly to speed up the game.  I don't think it would affect the game much at all.

If a playing partner chips over the green and I am ready, I can go ahead and putt as they are getting to their ball, without having to pull the flag or having someone else do it.  Possibly not having the flag replaced in time for the other players pre shot routine.

If I hit a chip to 2' I can walk up while getting a look at the line and hit the ball in.  If I have to pull the flag and set it down in an appropriate spot, I then have to refocus on the line and speed to hit that putt, so I will usually just mark unless the flag needs to be pulled anyway.

Imagine if the next crop of tour players started to do this you would see much less marking close to the hole among amateurs.

It can come into play when playing alone.  If I have no one to tend the flag for me and make a long putt should I be penalized?

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