Notes Former Catcher Caddies for Former Pitcher

By Associated PressMay 25, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 Senior PGA ChampionshipEDMOND, Okla. -- Once competitors on the baseball diamond, former major leaguers Rick Rhoden and Mickey Tettleton now are partners on the golf course.
Rhoden, who earned a conditional playing card for the Champions Tour last November, is in the field for the Senior PGA Championship this week at Oak Tree Golf Club. Tettleton, an Oak Tree member who lives in nearby Norman, is caddying for Rhoden during the tournament.
Rhoden pitched for 15 years in the majors, with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates, New York Yankees and Houston Astros, and was an All-Star in 1976 and 1986. His career dovetailed with that of Tettleton, a catcher and first baseman who retired in 1997 after 14 seasons with the Oakland A's, Baltimore Orioles, Detroit Tigers and Texas Rangers.
The players shared the same agent and became friends through golf, Rhoden said. Tettleton said he was honored when Rhoden asked him to caddy.
'He kind of knows if he gets upset he can bark at me and it's not going to bother me,' Tettleton said.
Not that that happens too often.
On the course, 'he's too big to argue with, so you know, I'm not going to be arguing with him,' Rhoden said. 'It's just like pitching -- the catcher suggests the pitch, you have the final decision. Same as golf. I'll ask him what he thinks and the final decision is mine. So if I do something wrong, I'm the one with the club, so I'm the one at fault.'
Jay Haas is staying in the home of Oak Tree resident and PGA TOUR veteran Bob Tway during the tournament. On Tuesday, during a windy practice round, Tway followed Haas around and offered tips on how to play the course, which Haas said came in handy Thursday as he fired a 3-under-par 68.
'There are some holes he points out, 'Go at the chimney here, go at the flag here, the satellite dish on this hole,' all that stuff,' Haas said, smiling. 'Yeah, it pays off. It sure does, to kind of focus in on certain points. He only went 12 or 13 holes with us, though, so I'm on my own those last five.'
Haas said even Tway was surprised when the wind gusted above 30 mph, as it did during Tuesday's practice round. Tway told Haas that when the wind blows that hard, local pros just play the back nine, because those holes are 'mostly in the trees. He said they don't even venture out to the front nine. We probably shouldn't have either,' Haas said.
At 47, Tway isn't yet eligible to play on the 50-and-over Champions Tour, so he's missing the opportunity to play in a major on his home course, as he did in the 1988 PGA Championship.
'I don't think he's envious,' Haas said. 'He's a pretty laid-back guy.'
There's talk that a PGA TOUR major could return to Oak Tree in 2014, by which time Tway will be on the Champions Tour. But Tway's son, Kevin, won the 2005 U.S. Junior Amateur championship. Someone mentioned to Haas that Kevin Tway could be on the PGA TOUR by 2014.
'That's right,' Haas said, 'and (Bob) could caddy for Kevin.'
After shooting a 2-under-par 69, Dana Quigley opened up to reporters about his decision almost 16 years ago to give up alcohol. Quigley made $92,298 on the PGA Tour -- playing mostly from 1979 to 1982 -- but while alcohol-free, he's made about $12.5 million on the Champions Tour.
Quigley said that twice running his car into a tree in 1988 didn't change his behavior. A friend convinced him to go into treatment for his addiction, but Quigley remained dry for only a few months before he resumed drinking.
'I was breaking everyone's heart but my own because I was too drunk to worry about it,' Quigley said.
He said that late in 1990, he was driving from a course in Florida to a restaurant for some drinks when 'a light dawned on me' and he pulled his car off the road and headed home.
'I haven't had a drink since,' he said.
'It's still a problem every day. I would love to have a six-pack of beer right now. It would be perfect after this heat,' he said. 'But I can't do it, so it's something that I don't deal with. I don't feel like I have an option to deal with it, so I don't even worry about it. ... It's a widespread problem in the world and I was just really lucky.'
Scott Simpson had an up-and-down round, recording back-to-back bogeys twice but also stringing together birdies on No. 7, No. 8 and No. 9. He finished with a 1-over 72. ... John Chillas of Scotland withdrew from the tournament Thursday because of a bout of flu, opening a spot for Rocky Thompson of Houston. Chillas was the 13th player to withdraw. ... Club professional James Blair of Ogden, Utah, began his tournament with an eagle on Oak Tree's par-4, 437-yard No. 1, hitting a pitching wedge from 139 yards on his second shot. It's Blair's second Senior PGA Championship appearance.
Related Links:
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  • Rahm, Koepka both jump in OWGR after wins

    By Will GrayNovember 20, 2017, 1:19 pm

    Jon Rahm and Brooks Koepka both made moves inside the top 10 of the Official World Golf Rankings following wins in Dubai and Japan, respectively.

    Rahm captured the European Tour season finale, winning the DP World Tour Championship by a shot. It was his third worldwide victory of 2017 and it allowed the Spaniard to overtake Hideki Matsuyama at world No. 4. It also establishes a new career high in the rankings for Rahm, who started the year ranked No. 137.

    Koepka cruised to a nine-shot victory while successfully defending his title at the Japan Tour's Dunlop Phoenix. The victory was his first since winning the U.S. Open and it helped Koepka jump three spots to No. 7 in the latest rankings. Reigning PGA Tour Rookie of the Year Xander Schauffele, who finished second behind Koepka in Japan, went from 30th to 24th.

    After earning his maiden PGA Tour victory at the RSM Classic, Austin Cook vaulted from No. 302 to No. 144 in the world. Runner-up J.J. Spaun jumped 48 spots to No. 116, while a hole-out with his final approach helped Brian Gay rise 73 spots to No. 191 after finishing alone in third at Sea Island.

    Dustin Johnson remains world No. 1, followed by Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas with Rahm and Matsuyama now rounding out the top five. Justin Rose remains at No. 6, followed by Koepka, Rickie Fowler and Henrik Stenson. Rory McIlroy slid two spots to No. 10 and is now in danger of falling out of the top 10 for the first time since May 2014.

    With his return to competition now less than two weeks away, Tiger Woods fell four more spots to No. 1193 in the latest rankings.

    Love to undergo hip replacement surgery

    By Rex HoggardNovember 20, 2017, 1:08 pm

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Two days removed from arguably the most hectic week of his year, Davis Love III will undergo replacement surgery on his left hip.

    Love, who hosted and played in last week’s RSM Classic, said he tried to avoid the surgery, but the pain became too much and he will undergo the procedure on Tuesday at the Andrews Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Center in Birmingham, Ala.

    “I had a hip problem the last few years, and I had a hip resurfacing trying to avoid hip surgery because I’m a chicken, but after playing [the CIMB Classic and Sanderson Farms Championship] I realized it was an uphill battle,” Love said.

    RSM Classic: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the RSM Classic

    Love said doctors have told him recovery from the procedure will take between three to four months, but he should be able to start work on his chipping and putting within a few weeks.

    Love, who missed the cut at the RSM Classic, said earlier in the week that his goal is to become the oldest PGA Tour winner and that the only way to achieve that was by having the surgery.

    “Now I’m excited that I’ve crossed that bridge,” said Love, who will turn 54 next April. “Once I get over that I can go right back to the Tour. I won after a spine fusion [2015 Wyndham Championship] and now I’d like to win with a new hip. That’s the reason I’m doing it so I can get back to golf and keep up.”

    LPGA awards: Ryu, S.H. Park tie for POY

    By Randall MellNovember 20, 2017, 1:56 am

    NAPLES, Fla. – In the end, the CME Group Tour Championship played out a lot like the entire 2017 season did.

    Parity reigned.

    Nobody dominated the game’s big season-ending awards, though Lexi Thompson and Sung Hyun Park came close.

    Thompson walked away with the CME Globe’s $1 million jackpot and the Vare Trophy for low scoring average. If she had made that last 2-foot putt at the 72nd hole Sunday, she might also have walked away with the Rolex Player of the Year Award and the Rolex world No. 1 ranking.

    Park shared the Rolex Player of the Year Award with So Yeon Ryu. By doing so, Park joined Nancy Lopez as the only players in LPGA history to win the Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year titles in the same season. Lopez did it in 1978. Park also won the LPGA money-winning title.

    Here’s a summary of the big prizes:

    Rolex Player of the Year
    Ryu and Park both ended up with 162 points in the points-based competition. Park started the week five points behind Ryu but made the up the difference with the five points she won for tying for sixth.

    It marks the first time the award has been shared since its inception in 1966.

    Ryu and Park join Inbee Park as the only South Koreans to win the award. Park won it in 2013.

    Vare Trophy
    Thompson won the award with a scoring average of 69.114. Sung Hyun Park finished second at 69.247. Park needed to finish at least nine shots ahead of Thompson at the CME Group Tour Championship to win the trophy.

    There were a record 12 players with scoring averages under 70.0 this year, besting the previous record of five, set last year.

    CME Globe $1 million prize
    Thompson entered the week first in the CME points reset, but it played out as a two-woman race on the final day. Park needed to finish ahead of Thompson in the CME Group Tour Championship to overtake her for the big money haul. Thompson tied for second in the tournament while Park tied for sixth.

    By winning the CME Group Tour Championship, Jutanugarn had a shot at the $1 million, but she needed Park to finish the tournament eighth or worse and Thompson to finish ninth or worse.

    LPGA money-winning title
    Park claimed the title with $2,335,883 in earnings. Ryu was second, with $1,981,593 in earnings.

    The tour saw a tour-record 17 players win $1 million or more this season, two more than did so last year.

    Ryu came into the week as the only player who could pass Park for the title, but Ryu needed to win to do so.

    Rolex world No. 1 ranking
    The top ranking was up for grabs at CME, with No. 1 Feng, No. 2 Sung Hyun Park and No. 3 So Yeon Ryu all within three hundredths of a ranking point. Even No. 4 Lexi Thompson had a chance to grab the top spot if she won, but in the end nobody could overtake Feng. Her reign will extend to a second straight week.

    Rolex Rookie of the Year
    Park ran away with the award with her U.S. Women’s Open and Canadian Pacific Women’s Open victories among her 11 top-10 finishes. She had the award locked up long before she arrived for the season-ending CME Group Tour Championship.

    Ko ends first winless season with T-16 at CME

    By Randall MellNovember 20, 2017, 1:07 am

    NAPLES, Fla. – Lydia Ko carved a hybrid 3-iron to 15 feet and ended the most intensely scrutinized year of her young career with a birdie Sunday at the CME Group Tour Championship.

    “Nice to finish the season on a high note,” Ko said after posting a 3-under-par 69, good for a tie for 16th. “Obviously, not a top-10 finish, but I played really solid. I feel like I finished the season off pretty strong.”

    Ko posted two second-place finishes, a third-place finish and a tie for fifth in her last eight starts.

    “Ever since Indy [in early September], I played really good and put myself in good positions,” Ko said. “I felt like the confidence factor was definitely higher than during the middle of the year. I had some opportunities, looks for wins.”

    Sunday marked the end of Ko’s first winless season since she began playing LPGA events at 15 years old.

    Let the record show, she left with a smile, eager to travel to South Korea to spend the next month with family after playing a charity event in Bradenton, Fla., on Monday.

    CME Group Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the CME Group Tour Championship

    Much was made of Ko beginning the year with sweeping changes, with new equipment (PXG), a new coach (Gary Gilchrist) and a new caddie (Peter Godfrey).

    In the final summary, it wasn’t a Ko-like year, not by the crazy high standards she has set.

    She saw her run of 85 consecutive weeks at No. 1 end in June. She arrived in Naples holding on to the No. 8 ranking. She ends the year 13th on the LPGA money list with $1,177,450 in earnings. It’s the first time she hasn’t finished among the top three in money in her four full years on tour. She did log 11 top-10 finishes overall, three second-place finishes.

    How did she evaluate her season?

    “I feel like it was a better year than everyone else thinks, like `Lydia is in a slump,’” Ko said. “I feel like I played solid.

    “It's a season that, obviously, I learned a lot from ... the mental aspect of saying, `Hey, get over the bads and kind of move on.’”

    Ko said she learned a lot watching Stacy Lewis deal with her run of second-place finishes after winning so much.

    “Winning a championship is a huge deal, but, sometimes, it's overrated when you haven't won,” Ko said. “Like, you're still playing well, but just haven't won. I kind of feel like it's been that kind of year.

    “I think everybody has little ups and downs.”