No Mas Haas
Who had Bill Haas leading after round 1 of the Masters? Go ahead, raise your hand. Probably not many of you unless your last name is also Haas or you are related to Bill in some fashion. Not that Bill isn’t a worthy player, he clearly is. He’s a former Fed Ex champion and multiple winner on the PGA Tour. Have you ever seen him hit a golf ball? I have, at Amen Corner actually, and I sat there wondering how he doesn’t win more often.
Bill’s day at Augusta was a pretty good one as far as 1st rounds of majors go. He made 6 birdies and two bogies. Those two boxes on his scorecard and his choice of pants were the only mistakes he made all day. Tomorrow is huge for him. A round of 71 or better should keep him near the lead or in it. Does he have that in him? We’ll have to wait and see. I’ll set the over/under for Bill’s 2nd round at 72.5 and take the over. Play hard William.
Fire Power At The Top
Outside of Mike Weir and a few others, flukes don’t usually get it done at the Masters. In defense of Weir, he was a top player in 2003, so me calling him a fluke really isn’t fair either. Take a look at the leaderboard after play ended in round 1.
We’ve discussed Haas, now throw in Woodland, Snedeker, Walker, Watson, Scott and Oosthuizen and you have some guys that are some of the best players in the world right now. Watson and Oostie could be on a collision course for another Sunday duel for the jacket. Rory isn’t even listed on page 1, but he too is only a few shots back at 1 under with young Jordan Spieth. This thing is going to stay bunched at the top and we could be running 7 or 8 wide down the home stretch on Sunday. That’s what we’re all hoping for, right? Keep your fingers crossed.
Oh, Phillip….that 76 has taken you right out of the hunt before you could even get in it. I don’t know why this cat wants late tee times in early rounds at Augusta. You know he’s like a crack head wanting more smack in the morning while he waits to get on the course. He seemed ready to make something happen after 6 pars to start, but he putted like a blind midget on the 7th green to walk off it with a triple. After that dumpster fire he started chasing it. He seemingly erased the triple by the middle of the back nine but went on to make another 7 at the 15th hole. F-U-G-L-Y.
He’s done. Seriously. Stick a fucking fork in him. And you have to wonder about his injuries, specifically his back and strained oblique. After the triple at 7, FIGJAM hit an iron off the 8th tee which is a par five. Huh??? That’s not Phil. This decision almost broke Twitter. Most tweeps speculated that he’d tweaked something and didn’t want to go hard at a driver at that point in his round. I still don’t get it and I don’t know if he explained it post-round. I’d bet a paycheck that in nearly 100 competitive rounds at the Masters Phil has never hit an iron off the tee at 8.
When I saw Lee Westwood at 45 to 1 odds I put money on him. I couldn’t turn it down. Lee’s not out of it, but after watching him pull his 2nd shot at 13 nearly off ANGC property I think its safe to say his game isn’t major ready this week. Picking another Aussie to win that learned a lot from his 2013 experience seemed like an obvious move. So in my other pick’em that involves money I took what I considered a safe pick in Jason Day. He fit the profile. But he shot 75 and is probably fucked too.
In all my analysis of the 2014 Masters I over looked the Aussie that played with Adam Scott last year in the final round. Remember when Scott made his putt at 18 to birdie his 72nd hole?
There was Marc Leishman in the background rooting on his countryman. He contended last year, and like Bubba, Scott, and others, Marc seems to have figured out Augusta National. Leish didn’t do anything to knock your socks off on Thursday but there he is at -2 with a solid 70. I think he’s going to shoot something in the 60s tomorrow that will be good enough for him to be in the final few groups on Saturday. If I could get a mulligan on my picks to win for the week, I’d take one and use it on him without a second thought.
Nearly every player that hit it in the drink at 15 asked for a rules official to assist them with their drop thanks to what happened to Tiger last year with #dropgate. Thanks to such cautiousness there wasn’t any real controversy until right at the end of the day when Jimmy Nantz dropped a nugget of information on us.
Nantz indicated that at the 9th hole Luke Donald played from the greenside bunker and didn’t advance his ball out of it. Without thinking, Donald took a swipe at the sand and grounded his club in a bunker his ball was still in. That’s a big problem and the officials watching Donald’s group were all over it. They didn’t mention it to him during his round but as he came to the scoring area he was greeted by officials so they could discuss the events of the 9th hole. Donald tweeted the following:
In short, Luke’s 6 at the 9th turned into an 8 and his 77 into a 79. On Friday he’ll have to have a better than average round just to make the cut. I’ll give Luke credit for owning his mistake and admitting it was stupid, but I’m curious why his caddie didn’t step in to stop him or alert him to what he’d done. It never ceases to amaze me that guys playing for millions of dollars don’t know the rules better.