Irons for All Handicaps

By Mercer BaggsJanuary 24, 2007, 5:00 pm
2007 PGA Merchandise ShowORLANDO, Fla. -- Drivers come and go. Putters vary round-to-round. But irons are in it for the long haul.
 
While most players change most everything in relation to their golf equipment on a routine basis, the one constant in their bag is their irons.
 
It might take a while for a player to find the right set for him or her. But when he or she does, youd have a better chance at getting them to change their name than getting them to switch their irons.
 
Plus, when you take into consideration cost, irons are an investment. Even if youre not overly comfortable with the ones you have, youre less likely to get rid of them because A) you paid too much to get them in the first place or B) you dont want to pay too much to get another set.
 
Having the wrong set of irons can be like having a bust for a first-round draft pick. Youre paying for him; youre stuck with him, so use him ' even if he does stink.
 
But, if you are unhappy with the clubs that comprise the majority of your bag, then maybe its time to step up and make a change.
 
Here are a few new items in the iron/wedge department for 2007:
 
Callaway Golf
Callaway X-20 Irons
Callaway's new X-20 irons.
Callaway is updating its popular X brand with the new X-20, X-20 Tour and X-Forged irons. The X-20 ($700 street value with steel shafts; $900 for graphite) has a lower center of gravity ' by six percent over the X-18 irons, according to the company ' which is to help get long irons airborne a little easier. The X-20 Tour ($800/$1,000) is designed more for the better player. It has a beveled top line and a squarer toe, a look the company feels the better player will like. It also features a new tour heel grind which relieves the heel area, effectively shortening the blade length for improved performance out of the rough. The X-20 also comes in a womens version ($700/$900). The X-Forged ($1,000/$1,200) is for the elite golfer ' the tour player and accomplished amateur. It has a thin top-line, narrow sole and delivers a medium trajectory with maximum workability.
 
'We cover every range of golfer,' said Jeff Colton, Senior VP of Research and Development Callaway Golf.
 
Mizuno
Mizuno came out with not one, not two, not three, but four new sets of irons for this golfing season. One is the MP-67, which is a sleek blade-like iron that uses the Slender Cut Muscle Design. According to the company, this design allows the player complete ball control by pin-pointing the COG inside the muscle back design. This iron is for the advanced player who likes forged, muscle-back irons. On the opposite end, they offer the MP-FLI-HI irons, which are hybrid irons designed to help players hit longer clubs better. Mizuno also has out two new MX (MX mean game improvement while MP means game enhancement) versions, the MX-19 and the MX-25. The MX-19 is for the mid-to-high handicapper. It features an oversized head, extremely low and deep center of gravity and an extra-wide sole. The MX-25 is for the low-to-mid handicapper. It has a HEMI pocket cavity that is wide, deeper and longer than ever before in order to move weight further down and away from the face. The four clubs have a street price range from $650-850 with steel shafts.
 
Nike Golf
The new Nike CCi irons combine classic clean lines with cutting edge technology. They are forged and cast irons that have individually tuned tungsten weight inserts to give the longer irons added forgiveness. The shorter irons have more shot-directing feel with an added polymer. They retail for $799 with steel shafts and $899 with graphite.
 
Adams Golf
Adams is making a name for themselves with their Idea hybrid irons. Now they have the GT3 ($299), which features a wide, friendly sole design that makes them easy to hit from any lie or playing condition. The undercut channel repositions the weight low and back for the optimal launch angle and the oversize heads allow for a large, confidence-inspiring sweet spot. They come in a 10-iron mens set and an 8-iron womens set.
 
Bridgestone Golf
Bridgestone Gravity Chamber Midsize Irons
Bridgestone's new Gravity Chamber Midsize irons.
Bridgestone has two versions of one new iron out for 2007: the Gravity Chamber Midsize and Gravity Chamber Oversize (both $700). The GC Midsize is for the mid-handicap amateur. It features a Gravity Chamber in the back cavity of the clubhead from which significant weight is removed. The weight is repositioned by using Gravity Disks that increase moment of inertia and as a result produces a reduction in clubhead twisting on off-center hits, generating a straighter ball flight. The GC Oversize, meanwhile, is for the higher handicap player. Its weight system helps players avoid mis-hits and makes it easier for them to hit their longer irons.
 
Cleveland
Cleveland, who is not exhibiting at the Show this year, has their new HiBORE irons, which are hybrid irons for the mid-to-high handicap player. The Full Hollow construction allows for a 28% larger effective hitting area to provide extremely forgiving and easy-to-hit irons. HiBORE irons feature an oversized cup-face structure, and because the clubface and the hosel are cast as one piece the sweet spot is expanded, according to the company.
 
Cobra
Cobra, who is also not exhibiting this year, is offering up a mens and womens version of their new FP irons. The FP has a mid-width sole, under-cut cavity design; heel-to-toe perimeter weighting; and a urethane sole insert, back cavity plate. Its all designed to help the mid-to-high handicapper hit the ball higher and easier. The mens FP has a street value of $500.
 
In addition to some of the notable new irons out this year, here are a couple of the new wedges designed to help you attack pins and escape trouble.
 
Mizuno
Mizuno has the MP R Series wedge. It comes in a chrome and black nickel finish, and has a classic round head shape. The CNC Max-Milled square grooves give it optimum spin, and it has a minimal offset. Its specs are: 52/7, 54/10, 56/10, 56/13, 58/10, 60/5 and 60/9. It has a street value of $100.
 
Cleveland
Known for their wedges, Cleveland is touting its new 588 DSG (Dynamic Sole Grind). It comes in a mirror chrome and is made of soft 8620 carbon steel. A double nickel-plating is applied for an exceptionally soft feel at impact and improves durability. It comes in 54, 56, 58 and 60 degree lofts and has a street value of $110. There is also a 588 DSG RTG+ version which has a rust-like finish.
 
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    Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

    By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

    Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

    The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

    Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

    Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

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    Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

    Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

    Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

    Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

    4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

    4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

    4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

    4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

    4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

    5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

    5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

    5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

    5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

    5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

    6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

    6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

    6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

    6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

    6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

    6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

    7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

    7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

    7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

    7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

    7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

    7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

    8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

    8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

    8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

    8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

    8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

    8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

    9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

    9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

    9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

    9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

    9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

    10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

    10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

    10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

    10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

    10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

    10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

    11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

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    Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

    By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

    He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

    “There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

    Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

    “I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

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    Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

    Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

    Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

    “I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

    Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

    “It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

    More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

    “I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”