Country Club New Bedford

Justin Thomas is my Player of the Year

GOLF-USPGA-ASIA-MAS

Winning the player of the year award in any sport is pretty impressive. 

To get that, you have to do something historic or be the best player in the league by a lot. This season in the NBA we saw Russell Westbrook average a triple double and win the NBA MVP. So you could say that winning five tour events in one season would be a solid campaign for the MVP.

I think it is, and it is not disputable. Starting off the season with a few wins at the early year events seemed cool for JT. Get some wins under your belt and get geared up for a long year.But when he won the PGA Championship it opened a whole new can of worms.

Winning a major compared to a “pre season” event gives you an entire different look to your resume. In a major everybody is playing at the top of their game and the course itself are such a tough setup it takes you’re A game to win. After that, he added yet another win. In the Fed Ex Playoffs even.

To win five PGA Tour events in your life is one thing, but to do it in a year is amazing. I think Justin Thomas had the best year on the PGA Tour.

I would argue he is the unanimous player of the year, but I have Spieth a close second and I think the voters may give him a few votes. Between the unreal Open performance, we will be talking about for years. And not to mention his bunker shot in our backyard in Connecticut that may go down as the shot of the year.

Justin Thomas may not have had the most memorable shot of the year, but he has had the best year and deserves to win player of the year.

Oh and there is two events left, anything is possible.

Millennial Pushing the Envelope on the Course

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Changing The Game of Golf

We all grow up being told not to stereotype, but it’s human nature to pair certain qualities with certain groups.

Some may be true; some may not be. One thing golf does have is a very strong stereotype among non golfers around the world.

Rich. Snobby. Proper. No fun. Quiet please.

Those are some of the words that some people associate with golfers. 

Rich people who enjoy their weekends at their country club, wearing fancy clothes, only clapping and not cheering and being quiet for most of their four-hour round.

But the millennial golfer may be breaking that mold. Myself included, millennial golfers like to push the envelope.

Instead of wearing a proper polo, we like to wear polos with crazy patterns and colors, untucked with a backwards hat on.

We are still going to hit the golf ball the same.

We like to bring our Bluetooth speakers and play our favorite songs while we play with our friends. We like to prank each other and try trick shots. Golf is a game, lets make it fun.

With all that being said we respect the history and tradition of golf, but with the direction it is heading, we need a drastic change to get todays youth excited and involved.

What better than bright fun clothes, loud music, competition and a whole lot of fun. The older generation may see our loud music as disrespect.

Come on dude, you were going to shank that ball into the woods even if my 50 Cent wasn’t blasting on my speaker. Golf needs to lighten up.

Until the older generation gets their ego and pettiness out, this game may never grow.

Millennials are not trying to ruin golf, we are trying to put our own fun spin on it.

Either join us, or get left in the dust. This is the future of golf.

The Pros and Cons of Playing a Par-3 Course

par 3 feature

“Pitch and Putt” Par 3 Course

Sometimes, you just want to have a nice relaxing round.

A great way to do that is play a par 3 course.

Positives

  1. Playable: It is only a par 3. So it is relatively playable for the non golfer. Whether that is an old friend who has clubs but never plays, a kid or even your girlfriend. Par 3 courses are short enough to where even someone who tops the ball 9/10 times can have fun.
  2. Walkable: Some people hate walking on a normal course. Par 3 courses are nice to walk because it isn’t all that much walking. 18 holes is going to be right around 3,000 yards compared to real courses that could be up to 6,500.
  3. Time: Since the holes are smaller, they take less time to play. 18 holes will take a lot less time at a par 3 course. So if you are just trying to squeeze in some swings, this is a great option.
  4. Irons: Unless you are very very old. Driver and woods are going to be staying in your bag most of the day. This means all irons. Which can be good. This is great time to get some practice with your irons and maybe even a hybrid on the longer holes.
  5. Putting: Most of the time, when you hit a green in regulation, you are outside of 10 feet from the hole. Unless you are a PGA Tour pro. But this means you get to practice long lag putts, speed control and other things that come into long putts. Instead of you missing the green and chipping close.

Negatives

  1. Pace of Play: Because they are relatively easy and family friendly, the people at these courses suck. I recently got stuck behind a father and son playing and the father topped everything and the son would scream “Kobe” every time he swung as if he was mimicking Kobe Bryant.
  2. Only Irons: You never really get to pull out the diesel stick or even 3 wood. So just keep them in your car so you aren’t tempted to do something stupid.
  3. Price: Although it is a lot less course, most of the time the rates are the same as a normal par 72 course.

Par 3 courses can be fun and relaxing. Leave the expectations at your country club and just have a fun day.

The Greenbrier Classic Wrap Up

Greenbrier Classic

The Greenbrier Classic is one of the premier tournament stops on the PGA Tour and this week didn’t disappoint.

With big names in the field like Bubba Watson, Phil Mickelson, J.B Holmes and Patrick Reed it was sure to be a firework filled event.

But it wasn’t the big names who made the noise.

Actually it was the little guys you probably have never heard of like Xander Schauffelle, Sebastain Munoz, Jamie Lovemark, Robert Streb and Kelly Kraft who were at the top of the leaderboards.

Munoz put on a show all week leading from Thursday to Sunday morning where he leaned on his putter to get him there.

But when you lean on something and it gets pulled out, you usually stumble and fall.

And that is what happened on Sunday to Munoz.

He carded multiple bogeys that came along with three putts, not ideal when looking for your first PGA Tour victory.

Seeing the collapse, Schauffelle took advantage hitting about 90% of greens in regulation and carding four birdies for a -3, 67 on the day.

Streb and Lovemark couldn’t force a playoff and make things any more interesting as they were near the leader all day but couldn’t get those few important birdies when it mattered.

The real story is the rise of 23-year-old rookie Xander Schauffelle. A few weeks ago he had his best showing at Erin Hills at the U.S. Open when he finished T5, probably a dream come true.

Now just a few weeks later he is raising a trophy above his head.

“Everyone that knows me knows I’m a late bloomer, so to jump in the Top-30 in this fashion is something special for me.” Schauffelle said to the media after his win Saturday.

Emotions were running wild as he talked about his dad, a great moment for golf.

What Type of Putter Should You Be Using?

blade vs mallet Putters

Jordan Spieth and his Scotty Cameron Newport 2 almost go hand in hand. 

But at the AT&T Byron Nelson, Spieth put a Scotty Cameron Futura in his bag.

For those of you who don’t know, the Newport 2 is a blade style putter and the Futura is a mallet type putter.

This raises the question, what type of putter should you be using?

Recently we have seen many tour players gaming the TaylorMade Spider, which is also a larger mallet looking putter.

Here is an argument for both styles, and we will let you decide.

Blade

Putters
Scotty Cameron Newport 2
  1. Lighter: For the most part this putter has less material so it will naturally be lighter. This may help players who have a smooth putting stroke already.
  2. Lines: There are a lot of sight lines in a blade putter. Some are literally painted on it like a dot on the top of it. But a putter like a Newport 2, it has a lot of natural lines in the design that will help with alignment.
  3. Feel: Because it is a smaller piece of material, it is easier to “feel” the putt. Saying that when you crank a putt you know and can feel it, or if you leave it short. With a mallet it is a bigger piece of material so the feel is lost in the bigness.

Mallet

Putters
Scotty Cameron Futura Putter
  1. Heavier: Some may see this as a downfall, but if you tend to leave putts short, get a big mallet behind that little white ball and it will be flying towards the hole in no times.
  2. Forgiving: Because the material is bigger, if you have a mishit and hit the ball not on the center of the face, it will go almost on the intended line. With a blade, mishits are a lot more exaggerated.
  3. Alignment: Many people say because of the bulk of the putter; mallets are easier to align on your intended line towards the hole.

At the end of the day, the biggest thing with a putter is confidence. Some people don’t like the bulkiness of a mallet and say it looks ugly at address. If you are not confident looking down at the putt, you wont have a confident stroke. Confidence is key when putting. Pick your line and stick to it.

Why Are Luxury Clubs Becoming More Popular?

Parsons Extreme Golf

We all know PXG.

Parsons Extreme Golf is a newish golf equipment company that makes everything you need from drivers to iron sets to putters and everything in between.

These clubs have been reviewed and have had pretty good reviews. PGA Tour players James Hahn, Ryan Moore, Pat Perez and others on the PGA and LPGA Tour play these clubs.

There is a catch though. These clubs cost a pretty penny.

Here are some of their price points.

Their 0311 irons, “Engineered for golfers at every level of the game, PXG 0311’s are the world’s sexiest, most forgiving irons that launch higher, go farther, feel softer and have a sweet spot the size of Texas.” As their website says will cost you around $300 dollars a club. Oh, and you can only order them through an authorized fitter…

PXG
PXG 0311t Irons

Let’s look at their 0811 driver.

Available in 9 degree, 10.5 and 12 degree lofts, this driver will only cost you $850 dollars, pocket change. Also only available at an authorized fitter.

PXG
PXG 0811 Driver

Recently PXG released a new line of wedges that are 100% milled wedges in various loft, lie and bounce options. 100% milled wedge must be a fine work of art that performs unlike any other and for the low starting price of $650 dollars you can start holing out with you 60-degree wedge, so worth it!

The only club you can buy on PXG’s website are putters. They range from $400-$600 dollars.

But this isn’t just about PXG.

Titleist JP WEdges

Recently, Titleist introduced their line of JP wedges.

These wedges are designed by James Patrick Harrington and they do not disappoint. These wedges are beautiful top of the line clubs that perform as well as they look.

PXG
Titleist JP Wedges

When you order them you have customizable options such as stamping, paint fill, grip size and of course loft.

For a small price of $2,000 dollars you get a one on one fitting with Harrington where he will look at your swing using high tech cameras.

Once diagnosing your swing, he will tailor three wedges for your swing, but only three. Each additional wedge after the three will cost you $500 dollars a piece.

These “high end” clubs seem to be catching on. Although you may not seem many people at your golf course with them, people are still buying them.

What happened to just buying a Mack Daddy Callaway wedge for around $100 dollars and being happy with it?

Seems as if people that buy these clubs are putting too much stock into the game improvement of them.

The Pros and Cons of Early Tee Times

The Early bird gets the worm

Everyone knows that one person that loves to get out and golf early in the morning.

But, with that early morning tee time comes its advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages of an early tee time

  • You Lead The Way: Nothing better than playing like you’re on your own private course. No on in front of you as soon as you finish a hole you can go right on the next tee. You get to play at your pace as long as no one is really rushing you from behind.
Tee Times
Lead the way
  • Fresh Greens: You get to play on greens that are virtually untouched. They haven’t been walked on all day and beaten up on. Tour players will attest to this, they prefer to play in earlier groups because the greens aren’t covered in spike marks and just generally worn on.
Tee Times
Fresh Greens
  • Get It Done With: This makes it kind of sound like a chore, but this means you can still have an afternoon to be productive. If you tee off before 7 am you will finish up in enough time to do stuff all evening.
  • Won’t Waste Money On Beer: Unless you are a freak, you wont be drinking too much beer at a 7 am tee time. Maybe one or two in the last couple holes.

Now for the disadvantages…

  • Frost Delays: Nothing worse than getting to a course, ready to go and there is a 45-minute frost delay. While you have already been at the range for 30 minutes. Throws everything off.
Tee Times
Frosty Greens
  • Forget Something: While you were hung over and stumbling out of the house to make you early tee time, you completely forgot to grab that dozen Pro V1’s out of the garage. Now you got to waste money and buy a few sleeves in the pro shop.
  • Too Early: Early in the morning your body isn’t fully awake. By 11 am you have done enough that your body is awake and naturally stretched out. Early in the morning you can be really stiff and almost still asleep. Stretching before a morning round is pivotal.
Tee Times
Stretch before teeing off
  • Weather: Depending on the time of year, it can be pretty cold for early tee times, hence the frost delay. If it isn’t the summer months, morning tee times can be quite chilly.
  • Putting: First 4-5 holes will probably have dew on the greens, slowing your ball down. Once the sun comes up and dries the due off the greens, they will be playing a lot faster. Adjusting to this for a few holes may cost you a few strokes if you are unfamiliar with the greens.

Waking up alone is a chore for some people, so you make the call whether to reserve that early tee time or not.

Driving Irons May Be Making A Comeback

Benefits and drawbacks of Using a Driving Iron 

Slowly and slowly 5 woods are disappearing from golfers bags all around the world.

Why?

Hybrids have become so popular and much easier to hit, it makes the 5 wood a historical relic.

Another club that has been long out of a lot of people bags are driving irons.

Driving irons are beefed-up irons that are designed to hit the ball higher and farther than a standard 1, 2 or 3 iron, because of the low loft, normal 1, 2 or 3 irons are almost impossible to hit on the golf course.

Driving Iron
PING Driving Iron

But the driving iron deserves a place in your bag and may be making a comeback.

Perks

Because of its low trajectory it has many uses. When you play on really windy days, obviously you want to keep the ball low so using a driving iron off the tee is a great way to still get distance even with the wind. Drivers trajectory is so high the wind knocks them down.

The other perk of the driving iron is the roll you get with it on the fairways. With the benefit of low trajectory, a driving iron will run out a lot as well. If you struggle off the tee with shots that are less than driver but still a decent shot, the driving iron has your name on it. With the beefed-up back it makes it easy to hit when it is a little teed up.

Flaws

The one flaw isn’t even in the club; it is the simple fact if you want to put a club in your bag strictly for driving, other than a driver. The problem is that the driving iron gets so much roll out it is almost useless as a second shot. If you are going for the green in two with this club you are going to have to play it so it lands on fairway and runs up onto green, which can be a tough shot for an amateur. The one use for a second shot is if you are playing a massive par five and you want to layup and the hole is so far out a reach a driving iron is still considered laying up. (But who lays up? Come on now)

If you’re someone who doesn’t have a club for those awkward tee shots we all face, a driving iron may be your saving grace.

 

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