Michelle Wie's putt at Nabisco was no choke
Much as I hate to disagree with Chris Baldwin, who is doing the world good with his ongoing, winning battles against the whacked-out Michelle Wie Warriors, I think Wie’s putt on the 18th at the Nabisco was telling on Sunday.
This wasn’t a putt she blew. She didn’t miss it because of nerves. It was a good, solid effort that slid by the hole. It could easily have gone in. And her reaction was telling as well. She thought she had made it. Just about everyone thought she had made it. Every time she loses, she learns something. So far, she has only learned how to lose. This time, was different. Yes, she lost, but she gave it a good effort instead of choking like she’s done in the past.
I think the girl could be – might be – learning how to deal with pressure.
|« Azalea City in Mobile, Alabama a great muni||Al Franken responds to Rush Limbaugh on TravelGolf.com »|
She's learning and she'll win eventually. I'll laugh if it's the John Deere.
We'll definitely we her win a lot on tour. She's only 16, and has years ahead of her.
Don't worry, you won't be laughing. Unless, that is, you're one of those guys who laugh at their own stupidity.
Ah... what do you do with a teenager who has 180,000 plus in her purse after seven days of work?
It's not clear that a putt would have worked out better since there was a lot of fringe to put through (8 feet according to her caddy). Ochoa had a similar putt and left if farther from the hole. Wie feels more chipping so she chipped. You may question her judgement, but I don't think it was an obvoiusly wrong decision, and it was hardly a "choke".
I'm more happy with how she played 18 in the final round than how she played it in the first 3. I think the final round was the only time she went for the green in 2. She was burned there last year with a double, so she has become conservative. Being conservative has clearly helped her keep out of trouble, she had very few bogies through the 4 rounds on a very tough course. But, IMHO, she needs to use her length advantage more on par 5s. Maybe if she had gone for it in the first 3 rounds she would have done better on 18 in the final round.
The putt wasn't a choke job, the chip was. I got crucified on this site for suggesting that Michelle had been arrogant in her decision making to go for broke with a low percentage chip, but it seems One-Putt of all people actually agrees with me, except he is blaming her caddy for the gaffe and once again letting little Michelle off the hook. I wish I never had to take responsibilty for my mistakes in life."
Tiger had a similiar situation at Isleworth last week with one going off the back and Steve handed him a putter. Neither of them said a word to each other, Tiger hit it by a few feet and then made the uphill putt coming back. If Tiger had handed the putter back to Steve and asked for a wedge he would have said something. After all they are partners in the outcome.
Michelle's Caddy has more years experience carrying on the Professional golf tour than she has been alive. The first time he blew it was at the Samsung when she was faced with a complicated drop and he should have insisted she get a rules official involved. That one cost her a 4th place finish.
The Wie's hired this guy for a reason and it wasn't to only tote her bag around and clean her clubs.
I noticed Inkster has risen back up the standings after this guy jumped ship.
The one thing I have said before is she needs to get her putting average down to 27 to 28 per round for GIR and then she will win and win a bunch. Her tee to green game is what keeps her in the match for now. Check it out and she will have one of the highest GIR percentages in the tournament.
For example Lorena was hitting a Five-Wood for her second shot on 18 and stuck the green. Michelle was hitting a Five-Iron into the green and was almost a club too long. That is a huge advantage in the long run.
your comparing of the final score for the mens and womens events is simply ridiculous.
If it meant anything, then someone could compare, this years mens US Open to the Kraft Nabisco.
I bet the score at the Mens US Open won't be as good as the score at The Kraft Nabisco. Does this mean that the women are in fact better golfers than the men? No it certainly does not.
As you should know tournament scores vary from week to week, based on the course, the conditions and the set up.
Since you bring up the whole men/women debate, who exactly claimed that many lpga golfers would be able to make it on the pga?
The only woman, that Wie supporters have put forward as being capable of competing on the pga tour is Michelle Wie.
Lorena Ochoa is considered a long hitter on the lpga tour. Yet on the 18th, she had to use a 5 wood to make the green on her 2nd shot. Wie used a 5 iron and actually went over the green. It is pretty obvious that Wie has a length advantage over nearly everyone on the lpga. There is also other aspects of her game that suggest she can be more competitive on the pga than other lpga players.
However she isn't the finished article yet. Over the last few years, she has improved dramatically every year. From the start of this year so far, she has yet again improved by a long way.
Her 2nd round at the Sony where she hit many extramely long drives, longer than she had before, and may more 300+ drives than her previous attempts, and well outdrove people like David Toms and Jim Furyk showed that she has the driving length required.
She still needs to improve many aspects of her game in order to really challenge for pga titles.
However, she is practically there as regards the physical side of things, not only in her driving game, but also with regard to trajectory and spin on her approach shots.
So far, her progress has been outstanding. If she continues to progress I think she can dominate the lpga and win on the pga tour.
However, I don't think any other woman currently on the lpga will do this.
As for her GIR, she need to cut her distance to the pin. Once she does this, the number of putting strokes will drop. She has too many lower percentage puts outside of 15 ft.
I have tracked the progress of Michelle's statistics on PGA courses over the last 3 years and one tournament into her fourth year so far.
I, too, think Michelle will eventually win on the PGA. My prediction is, most likely not this year, but quite possibly next year; and almost certainly in two years time.
Will she win a PGA Major? I'd have to see another year or two worth of stats to go that far...(plus my innate male chauvistic genes absolutely scream that that would be impossible.) Ask me that one this time next year.
All provided, of course, that she continues to play the occasional PGA tourney.
She may decide to stick exclusively to the LPGA once she can qualify for a card--though I personally doubt that she will give up her dream of a Master's invitation until her arthritis no longer lets her hold a club or herd her walker around a golf course.
Also, why not look at the good decision he helped her make over the 4 days, not just one last hole he may or may not have contributed in failing.
Wie made millions of chip shots before and she was even surprised it went away like that. It is all 20/20 hindsight. The critical misfortune was the funny bounce the 2nd shot made. 180 turn, then drop 8 feet into the rough. That was the sign of Golf Gods not allowing Wie for a win this time. (and Webb's miracle Eagle)
In the long run, this is all nutrients for Wie to grow into a stronger player. If she gets too lucky and wins a major at 16, where is the fun and motivation ???
Had the weather been the same for the '05 and '06 Sony Open as it was in '04, she would have made the cut. The Golf Gods decided she was to young to make a cut in a PGA event and blew her ball all over Waialae. If you think that's only making a cut in a PGA tournament, go ask Parker McLachlin about making the first PGA cut. If I'm not mistaken, he said it was the hardest thing to do.
Norman, par at the US Open will be par 70, not 72. How do you explain the 774 yard difference in the men's course last week compared to the ladies'?
STOP RIGHT THERE.
You are comparing the pga tour and the lpga tour and saying the pga tour is way better. The difficulty with that is that you are phrasing it in a way, as if someone were disagreeing with you.
Has anyone said that the lpga tour is on a par? Has anyone even said they were close?
There is no doubt, that there is a massive gap, no only in quality but even moreso in depth on the two tours.
My opinion on the subject is related to one girl who has shown what she can do on a pga course.
I know just how difficult it is to make it at Challenge Tour (Nationwide) level. It took me years before I even got comfortable there, and so I know just how difficult the big time is.
On you other points of getting and keeping a tour card. Yes it is difficult, and extremely difficult at that, but what she has shown so far, leads me to believe that she can do it.
Who knows I may join her some day! This year if I can make the epga end of year euro pga championship, I'll be delighted.
Anyway, it has been fun commenting here for a few days. Hopefully I'll pop in from time to time, during other Wie events, but unfortunately the Michelle Season, corresponds with the Norman Season, ie lots of Euro Tour events from May onwards, Euro Tour events that are actually in Europe. What a concept!
Will she focus on the men's game, and play only a few women's events--or will she focus on the women's game and play only a few men's events? If the former I think there is a good chance she will be able to win sometime on the PGA on a week she gets very lucky. If she plays mostly women's events I think it is unlikely she will win one of the few men's events she plays.
For a Sorenstam to compete, and lose, on the PGA would be seen as more of a humiliation, because she's been such a dominant player on the women's tour.
Wie has far less to lose. If she starts winning consistently on the women's tour and emerges as a top player there, I think she'll rethink her participation on the men's tour.
It's a fallacy to state that the best player on the women's tour will do the best on the men's tour. The games are different. The women's courses don't play to Wie's strengths.
The few times she pulls out her driver there, it elicits gasps from the audience because it is such a rare event.
If that were the case, Wie would have less incentive to play on the men's tour and could gauge her performance against the men much more accurately, such that, if she were ever to start getting the same kinds of scores on men's courses that the men were getting, she could eventually cross over with confidence.
The LPGA courses, however, are currently set so that players who average under 250-yard drives aren't at a significant disadvantage. This may even the field for many of the players on the women's tour, but it puts a limit on Wie's strong points.
All the women's tours are tied together, so Michelle as a Pro can only get six exemptions a year right? The other two women's events she will play are not LPGA sponsored events. So at the most she can play only eight events a year as a Pro who is not eligible for LPGA membership and if she doesn't desire to be a HS dropout to apply.
So where does Michelle turn to when she wants to get more competative events in each year to improve as a player? Remember Alex she is still a young player under development.
Yes Alex I like her chances to make the cut at the SK and the Deere this year. Will she win? No Alex I don't believe she has the skills to keep pace with the men at this point of her young career.
Can she win a men's Pro event in the future? Who know's Alex, stranger things have happened in my lifetime.
I never thought I would live to see a 16 year old girl pop the ball past 300 yards ever or shoot a couple of 68s in a men's event, but I did.
I too think Wie has a chance of someday winning a PGA event if she focuses on it and continues to improve. A lot depends on what motivates her. It must have been very exciting for her at the end of the KN (at least the part before the wedge shot) with all the cheers as the three of them were walking up to the green on 18 (maybe too much, I think she started celebrating too soon). She may find she gets more satisfaction out of LPGA events if she consistantly places at or near the top. Then again, she may get bored.
Take for example a win at the US Women's Open:
* Five-year exemption on LPGA Tour
* 10-year exemption into the U.S. Women's Open
* Five-year exemption into the Kraft Nabisco Championship
* Five-year exemption into the McDonald's LPGA Championship Presented by AIG
* Five-year exemption into the Weetabix Women's British Open
* Entrance into the 2006 HSBC Women's World Match Play Championship
* Entrance into the Mitchell Company LPGA Tournament of Champions
* Exemption into the 2006 Samsung World Championship
* Exemption into the 2006 Evian Masters
* Rolex watch as a Rolex First-Time Winner
* 60 Rolex Player of the Year points
Add in six sponsor exemption and Michelle would not have to join the LPGA tour fulltime for five years at least while playing in any event she chooses to enter.
I must say Cindy Crawford was looking quite good at the Omega show in Beverly Hills and she is an avid golfer.
The numbers are in the 60,000 range for the first two days and event organizers are scrambling to figure out how to handle the crowds if Michelle makes the cut and plays the weekend. The scene could look like when Pope John Paul visited Manila after Michelle arrives in Seoul.
The entire country follows Michelle's every move on television and in the national press. I hope they have some good security in place.
I heard that pictures of Chris Baldwin have been distributed to law enforcement officials with instructions to "Shoot to kill".
Clay Ogden carded an 83 today at the Masters. Same guy that beat Michelle and became the eventual winner of the Public Links Championship. Michelle could have done better with the invite.
For drama at the Masters, I hope Tiger Woods gets something going on the weekend. If he doesn't show up, I think Ernie Els will be the one to beat.
Comments are closed for this post.