Saturday Semi — U.S. Open

Evening Wrapup:

  • Oakmont is a fantastic course in the sunshine.  What a contrast to the TPC crap we see most weeks on the PGA Tour.
  • Seems to me there’s not a lot of traffic on that stretch of Interstate.
  • By the way, other than some of the commentary, the broadcast hasn’t been too annoying.  Those green graphics showing roll were annoying, but they don’t seem to use them very often.
  • I like overhead shots from the blimp.  Too bad they feel the need to cover them up almost immediately with a bunch of useless graphics crap.
  • I’m not sure I care about the swing speed/launch angle stats.  I can kind of figure out on my own the physics of why Dustin Johnson hits the ball farther than Zach Johnson.
  • The combination of the course, the late finish, the sunny day, and compelling competition made this evening’s coverage a true joy.

Who would I like to see win among those near the top?

  1. Landry
  2. Sergio
  3. Westwood (could swap 2 and 3)
  4. Lowry

Don’t forget to read Mr. Elling’s articles at Bleacher Report.

Early Afternoon Update:

  • I’m for Landry or Lowry among the contenders, although it would be fun if Justin Thomas moved into Sunday contention.
  • I called it: “Branden Grace and Graeme McDowell are T-35, but [will] move up to T-25, I’d estimate — without swinging a club.”  They currently sit at T-28.
  • Prediction: Never again will we see Jordan and Rory on the same time of the draw in a major.
  • By the way, have you even once heard Fox Sports refer to the good and bad side of the draw?  Is that taboo or something?
  • Most Overrated Player: Rickie Fowler.  (Sorry, couldn’t resist.  I may need to give him another tough-love lecture.)
  • DJ, Westwood, or Sergio?
  • Kudos to Rory and Spieth for dressing distinctively, so that I immediately recognized them after camera changes.

Morning Line:

  • Andrew “Coach” Landry tied for the lead after two rounds.  Wait, I mean after one round.  No, that’s not right.  Let’s call it after one-and-one-half rounds.
  • Weather Problems — televised golf’s worst nightmare.
  • Bubba wouldn’t make for a bad winner.  He is the most fascinating golfer of the post-Nicklaus era.  Larger-than-life game, larger-than-life psychological makeup.  The conventional wisdom is that his game/attitude isn’t suited for a U.S. Open, but the guy won at Riviera, so he’s a shotmaker.
  • Is Scottie Scheffler the next Jordan Spieth?  The 19-year-old amateur is sitting T-7.
  • Branden Grace and Graeme McDowell are T-35, but T-10 among those who have completed two rounds.  They’ll move up to T-25, I’d estimate — without swinging a club.
  • Look who’s sitting T-29, with two rounds completed: Justin Thomas.
  • Matt FitzPatrick Rodgers sit at T-35, with only one round played.
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43 Responses to Saturday Semi — U.S. Open

  1. Sports-realist. says:

    Spieth, who we all know isn’t a long hitter(sorry, a media habit), should be able to get back in this thing…..Don’t trust most of the leaderboard, and spare me how confident and swaggerish Dustin ‘three putt from 12 feet’ Johnson is looking right now…UNTIL he closes it out, I have more faith in Sergio Garcia to win it, who is only two back…
    I mean Landry? Westwood? Lowry? Piercy? I mean MOST of the top of the leaderboard should change over the next two rounds….This gives Spieth a real shot, IF he doesn’t go backwards….With the course getting faster, OVER par might win this thing..

    • Kris says:

      Spieth is completely still in it. The top of the leaderboard is littered with rookies and chokers.

      • Sports-realist. says:

        yeah that’s how I look at it too….but can Spieth can find it….Considering how close he was to back to back Masters, back to back US Opens isn’t too shabby either, and I would say more impressive than back to back Master’s….

  2. Kris says:

    Matt FitzPatrick Rogers cracked me up. I think Scottie Scheffler has the game and demeanor to succeed on tour. I hope the people you care about start playing better and Fox stops being lazy and just showing 5 or 6 different people. Comparing the evening recap on Fox to Golf Channel’s Live From, Golf Channel blows them out of the water. It’s like Fox endeavored to hire the dumbest people in golf and general sports announcing.

    Play starts at 7am but won’t be televised until 11am. Even the online live stream doesn’t start until 11am. They also didn’t update the website to reflect the changes in tee times due to weather, so I was confused for a second. They’re dropping the ball.

  3. Ken says:

    Like the Fox ball tracker a lot. Technically the production is good. But announcers are a total snooze.

    I didn’t understand the dislike of Norman. I miss him now.

    • Sports-realist. says:

      I don’t remember, did Norman decide not to do it anymore or did they remove him? I thought he was fine, esp when you compare it to other former players, turned announcers…

      • Ken says:

        My impression was that he was persuaded to leave. Officially it may have neen a “mutual” decision.

      • lannyh says:

        He was booted and he was not happy about it.

      • Ken says:

        Norman stumbled over some words, but so what. If anything, it lightened the mood a bit.

        Just being Greg Norman, best player for a good stretch of the 80s and 90s and 2 time British champ, gives him gravitas that Flesch, Brooks, and Azinger cannot touch.

  4. Ken says:

    Weather screwed things up. The USGA is running it as they always have, so I don’t think they’ve been unfair.

    But they could have been more creative.

    Rather than having the 1st round late wave play 36 yesterday, couldn’t they have had them play 18 and then send back out Thursday’s early wave? They could have then had their early and late rounds. With the Thursday late wave having to wait for the 1st round to complete on Friday before teeing off, their Friday 1st round round was fairly late and they could have then played their early round on Saturday.

    No perfect solutions and it’s fine as is. It would have reauired a quick decision on Thursday night, and organizations like the USGA don’t move quickly.

  5. Ken says:

    After his -4 front, I thought Rory was a contender. Now he’s going home.

    • lannyh says:

      Pure brilliance to put Rory and Spieth on same side of draw…

      • Ken says:

        It’s not the draw. Rory came home in 40 in rather benign conditions. Don’t know what’s up with him.

      • lannyh says:

        Excuse me? He missed the cut by two shots (and that was with reckless playing trying to get into actual contention). He had a 77 in the multiple-interruptions Thursday rain round. Say what you will; it was a factor.

      • Ken says:

        I think you’re making an excuse for him that Rory would not make for himself. The draw is literally the luck of the draw. Sometimes helps, sometimes not. That’s just life on tour.

        You make the cut at the Open and even from way back you can contend, considering how big numbers can turn things around in a hurry. Spieth still has a shot at 8 back. McIlroy was back to +3, just 7 back. He gets to round 3 with even a decent last 9. He survived a bad draw and was in decent shape starting the back 9; then he shot 40.

      • lannyh says:

        My Point: It is NOT “luck” which put Rory and Jordan in the same side of the draw.

      • DanishDude says:

        Westwood, Stenson, Landry, Lowry, Watson amongst others scored well under the exact same conditions, so stop making excuses for Rory and Jordan; they simply haven’t performed – simple as that…

      • lannyh says:

        That’s how probability works. You can bet bad cards and still win –SOMETIMES. But the odds are against you.

      • Ken says:

        But it is luck regarding what half of the draw gets slammed by weather. We’re talking about Rory missing the cut, so not sure the relevance of what half Spieth is in vs. Rory.

        Bottom line is Rory was rested and shot a brilliant front 9. Then in great scoring conditions he shot a 40.

      • lannyh says:

        Two guys are chasing Jack. Don’t put them on the same side of the draw.

      • Ken says:

        I don’t think “chasing Jack” is a consideration for the USGA when doing pairings.

        When the score is 18-4 and 18-2 in favor of Jack, the chase is really not on a lot of minds. Maybe if someone gets halfway there it will be worth discussing. Until then, Garcia, DJ, Westwood, you, and me are right on the heels of Rory and Jordan in their chase of Jack.

      • lannyh says:

        FYI: Jordan is 22. One a year until age 46 (when Jack won his last) will give him 26 total.

  6. Kris says:

    I fell asleep when Rory missed the cut and woke up to them butchering the pronunciation of Grillo. What did I miss? Haha.

    The early Thursday guys got the bad side of the draw, but it was less than 2 shots difference. Blame Rory’s 4 putt for knocking the wind out of his sails, not his tee time.

    • Kris says:

      ETA: Of the top 3 players in the world, 2 were on one side of the draw and 1 on the other. The USGA didn’t know which side of the draw would be “the bad side” when they wrote the tee times, and all 3 of them can’t be on different sides of the draw.

  7. Speedy says:

    Rory’s getting married, and maybe he’s having second thoughts? Maybe Rory’s Runaway Groom for the second time?

    Though I’m neutral on Rickie, he is going through a swing change. He should be decent for Troon.

    What’s up with USGA putting two twos near the 3rd round leaders times. Shoulda been at the front of the order.

    In spite of USGA rolling twice, and triple-cutting, flags are still accessible. Under par wins.

    FOX ratings are in the toilet. .4 (1.8 M viewers) in some of Friday primetime. Weekend projections 2.3 to 3.3. I don’t think they’ll make that higher figure. They need more Holly shots.

  8. DanishDude says:

    Your obsession with Rory, Jordan and the draw is quite frankly a bit exhausting.

    • Sports-realist. says:

      it is a valid point though, especially when you consider potential ratings, ect…..we’ll see if the folks that set up the tee times learn their lesson…..I’ve said it before, they are TOO worried about putting BIG names together in the first two rounds, when they SHOULD be doing the opposite, and separating them in early tee times…

      • Jaybird77 says:

        I don’t disagree with the idea that big names should be split up but it’s not like they were in the same group. And there is a certain amount of insinuation that being in the same side of the draw was a huge part of why Rory missed the cut…..which is ridiculous.

        After a bit of a rocky start, Rory came back nicely with a front 9 31, -4 in round 2. He ultimately had 3 strokes to play with coming in. Instead of shooting the 38 or better that he needed, he shot 40, which included 2 doubles. That, is why he missed the cut. Turn those into bogies and we would have seen Rory this weekend.

  9. Speedy says:

    Lowry & Landry impressed today. Dustin may have spit the bit earlier than usual.

  10. Ken says:

    Grace is flying under the radar.

    DJ, Westwood, and Garcia are all showing why they’ve won zero majors between them: the key, makeable putts don’t drop.

    Like to see Westwood have a big Sunday.

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