Fearsome 14th


PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. – Paul Casey penciled in an eight. Ditto for Ian Poulter. David Toms and Ricky Barnes went one better, double-bogey 7. Any way you slice it, Pebble Beach’s 14th hole took a toll on the field Friday.

For the week, the par-5 14th hole is the third toughest, with 51 bogeys and 10 double-bogeys due in large part to a green that during the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am is soggy and soft. But for an Open in June it is causing all sorts of problems.

One player suggested a U.S. Golf Association official blow up the hole, but in the USGA’s defense there is not a lot they can do about a green with a slope that severe. And players should get used to it.

“The simplicity of that green just scares the life out of players,” Padraig Harrington said. “I hit pitching wedge to 35 feet and was delighted.”

You won’t hear that in February during the “Claimbake.”