Grill Room Blogging the PGA

By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 7, 2008, 4:00 pm
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Hunter's hopes all-but shot down
Aug. 7, 2008
by: Mercer Baggs

Congratulations, Hunter Mahan. You are thisclose to assuring yourself of having the week of Sept. 15-21 all to yourself, free to do whatever you want whenever you want.
Forgo fancy dinners for a Whopper and onion rings. Sit around in your boxers and watch re-runs of Will & Grace instead of getting all dressed up in a too-tight tuxedo and mingling with boring, old Scrooges. Heck, play in the Viking Classic, if you so desire.
Have no fear; the Ryder Cup reaper is near.
Mahan, of course, made derogatory comments regarding the Ryder Cup, which were revealed last week. He subsequently apologized, but you cant put toothpaste back in the tube.
He started this week two spots removed from earning a place onto the U.S. team, with the top eight players in the standings (not including Tiger Woods) following the PGA Championship automatically qualifying for the biennial matches, to be held Sept. 19-21 at Valhalla Golf Club outside Louisville, Kent.
And then he went out and shot 11-over 81 Thursday at Oakland Hills, thus all-but assuring himself of a missed cut and a missed opportunity to make the team on his own merit.
Now he is at the mercy of U.S. captain Paul Azinger, who has four wildcard picks to use at his discretion.
You would think (I would think) that Azinger would sooner pick himself to be a playing member of his team than Mahan but, you never know. Azinger is desperate to try and end the Americans 3 Cup losing streak (theyve lost five out of the last six). And with still four events remaining until he has to announce his selections, Mahan has time to impress Cap with his play.
Azinger wants winners on his team. Should Mahan prove to be one over the next month he may well earn one of those picks.
Assuming he accepts it.
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Phil it up -- and down
Aug. 6, 2008
by: Mercer Baggs

According to odds-makers, Phil Mickelson is the favorite to win the PGA Championship this week. Apparently, they didnt pay attention to the events of last week.
And neither should they have.
Everything about Mickelsons game is bi-polar. Its peak followed by valley followed by peak, and so on.
There is no comprehensible rhyme or reason, no reliable way to predict how he will perform ' and Im sure Dave Pelz has tried in vain to come up with some kind of scientific formula to do so.
How Phil fares at one event means little to how he performs at the next; its just like him making a three-putt bogey on one hole and miraculous up-and-down birdie thereafter.
Granted, he made three bogeys over his final four holes to bottom out at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, but that just means hes due for another peak.
Earlier this year, he missed the cut at Pebble Beach and then won his next event, the Northern Trust Open. He also shot 78 to close his title defense at THE PLAYERS, and then captured Colonial right after that. Last year, he took off early at the FBR, but then took home the title the next week at the AT&T.
So dont count out Mickelson at Oakland Hills just because he played poorly down the stretch at Firestone. Of course, you cant count on him to win either.
The only thing you can count on is that, win or lose, hell make it entertaining to watch.
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Building momentum at Oakland Hills
Aug. 5, 2008
by: Mercer Baggs

The PGA Championship has a history of producing some of the most compelling golf on an annual basis, which is why Im willing to stay patient as we ease into this seasons final major.
Thus far, the excitement level seems to be lower than the McCain approval rating in the Hilton household.
A lot of that has to do with the fact that the two-time defending champion is on his couch. Or on his yacht. Or maybe in custom-build home on the moon. Wherever he is, hes not at Oakland Hills.
Another issue may well be the venue. The PGA is often the most forgiving major championship, allowing for lower scores and more drama. The last time this course hosted a regular major championship, though, Steve Jones won the U.S. Open at 2 under par.
Weve already seen 1 under force a playoff at this years U.S. Open; and 3 over win the British. Some red numbers would be a welcome sight this week.
But theres no reason to panic just yet. After all, no one remembers a major for what happens Monday-Wednesday.
Some good golf come Thursday and well be looking forward to Friday. Get a few big names in the mix Friday and well be anticipating the weekend. Keep those names near the top after Saturday and well be glued to our couch come Sunday ' or on our yacht or in our custom-built moon home.
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    Rose leads halted Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

    By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

    JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters when bad weather stopped play Friday during the second round.

    The Englishman, who shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday, had completed 13 holes and was 5 under on the day at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course.

    Kiradech Aphibarnrat (64) was in second place.

    Brandt Snedeker withdrew wit on the 11th hole at 2 under for the day after shooting an opening 72.

    There was no reason given for his withdrawal, but the American has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

    Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

    Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

    None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.

    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

    Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

    An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

    In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

    Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.

    Playing with the pros

    Tiger, DJ and Faxon

    Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

    Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

    Rory faces criticism

    Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

    Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'

    President at the Presidents Cup

    Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

    Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

    Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump

    Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

    Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

    Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73

    Cart on the green

    Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green

    Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open

    Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

    Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

    Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National

    Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open

    Trump golf properties


    Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

    Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


    Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

    Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

    Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

    Reportedly fake TIME covers

    Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover

    Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

    Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

    Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up

    Pros comment on the president

    Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

    Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

    Getty Images

    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm

    Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

    By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

    Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

    With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

    Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

    The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

    Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

    In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.