ATTENTION, READERS in the 28 EUROPEAN VAT COUNTRIES: Because of the new VAT law, you probably can't order books direct from my site now. But that's okay -- just go to my Smashwords author page.
You can order PDFs (as well as all the other ebook formats) from there.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

My "5 to Watch" at the US Open

One thing that everybody agrees on is that we have NO IDEA WHATSOEVER what kind of score might win this US Open. Chambers Bay is so different from any course the PGA Tour has played -- not just for a US Open but for any tournament -- that we have nothing to guide our expectations. This is a hard dry links course with mountainous level changes, and not even the diehard links players in the field have ever seen anything like Chambers Bay.

The 1st hole at Chambers Bay

So any picks made this week are purely guesses. Here are my rolls of the dice:
  • My overall favorite this week is Rickie Fowler. He really seems to like the course, and I think the dramatic terrain changes may actually play into his hands. As a motocross racer, negotiating the rolling racetrack of Chambers Bay is probably a comfortable feeling for him. And coming off his PLAYERS victory I think he has a lot of confidence.
  • Jordan Spieth also makes my list. Not only has Jordan continued to play consistently good golf but his caddie is intimately familiar with the course. That's got to give him a leg up on the competition.
  • Although his record on hard fast courses isn't that good, I still like Rory McIlroy this week. Chambers Bay is a wide-open course, with big fairways and without trees, so even a slightly off week with the driver shouldn't penalize him too much.
  • Phil Mickelson is a sentimental favorite, of course; I'd like to see him complete the Career Slam. But as Phil noted, this layout doesn't require you to play perfect golf... and he joked that he thought the course had a lot of room so he suspected the rest of the field (who tend to be more accurate) probably liked it just fine. And with his creative recovery shots and two runner-ups in the last two majors, you have to figure he'll be in contention.
  • As for my flier, you'll all think I'm nuts... but I'm going with Tiger Woods. A course that doesn't require perfect golf and that's hard enough for Tiger to avoid driver completely (remember his win at rock-hard Hoylake?), coupled with a short game and putting game that he's proven is back in decent shape, seems to be a perfect place for Tiger to do the unthinkable and get Major #15.
I know what you're thinking and you're right. I've basically gone chalk this time (except for Tiger, that is). But when we have no idea what to expect, it only makes sense to go with the players who enjoy the challenge of the unknown.

No comments:

Post a Comment