Everybody expected the weather would be tough on Masters Friday, but I'm not sure anybody expected the results.
I guess we all expected Charley Hoffman to come back to the field. Not that Charley played badly, but even he said he got a bit lucky on Thursday. He didn't get the same breaks Friday and ended up shooting 75, which was the average score of the field. Still enough to keep a piece of the lead.
The shocks began when Sergio birdied the first three holes. Birdies were virtually non-existent on #1! Then Rickie Fowler and Thomas Pieters started going low and, by the end of the day, we had a four-way tie for the lead.
I'm not sure anybody expected a 4-under lead -- at least, not unless Charley made a deal with the devil. The winds were just too strong. Will McGirt -- alone in fifth place at -2 -- chalked it up to the way the winds swirled, saying that they would often completely change direction.
In the end, only 9 players finished under par. But that group includes players as diverse as Jon Rahm and Fred Couples. And the three players at even par -- Adam Scott, Phil Mickelson and Jordan Spieth -- virtually guarantee a wild weekend at Augusta.
The changeable winds of Thursday and Friday may give way to the winds of change this weekend. It's a healthy mix of veterans and fresh faces, of major winners and major possibilities. And while each of the most-likely contenders right now will garner attention, it's probably safe to say that Sergio and Rickie will be the most-watched of the bunch.
At any rate, it's shaping up to be one of the best Masters weekends we've seen in a while. Pardon the pun, but something major is likely to happen Sunday afternoon.