A Round And A Round We Go
Back from our first commercial break, the year end awards show at SFG.com continues. Next up, as you can see by the title, is the award for the Round of the Year. While this year includes only nominees from professional events sanctioned by the PGA Tour, the category is wide open to anyone. As you may recall, last year I nominated a mini-tour buckeroo from Kentucky that shot a 56 while playing with his pals. Fuck, if I ever post a number good enough to qualfity for the U.S. Mid-Am I’ll nominate myself.
Before we get to the nominees, I’ll allow the winner of the last award to complete their acceptance speech. The fellas at No Laying Up were over come by emotion, as you can tell:
Now, on to the Round of the Year.
The Nominees Are……
Kevin Sutherland, 2nd Round of Dicks Sporting Goods Open/En-Joie Golf Club/Endicott, NY – Having only one regular tour win in your career before you join the Champion’s Tour isn’t a bad thing if you also have $15 million dollars in career earnings. Once you start playing against the old men you’re likely to start adding to that total. Kevin Sutherland wasted no time in trying to do just that this year on the Senior Circuit. He shot a scorching 59 in his Saturday round at the Dicks in upstate New York to vault up the leaderboard and into contention. Like Jim Furyk’s 59 last year, Kevin’s magic number also included a bogey. He could have shot 58!
Unfortunately for Kevin he backed that round up with a very average one in the final round and didn’t win. Bummer. That and the bogey will hurt your chances just a bit in this category.
Martin Kaymer, 2nd Round of U.S. Open/ Pinehurst No. 2/Pinehurst, NC – Martin Kaymer shot 65-65 to lap the field heading in to the weekend at America’s Championship. You could pick either of those rounds as a nominee in this category. The 1st round is probably better in relation to how it compares to the rest of the field. However, the stats from the 2nd round are hard to overlook so I’ll stick with it. He hit 12 of 14 fairways and then hit 15 of Ross’ fabled table top greens. He didn’t make a single bogey to offset his 5 birdies.
That’s filthy. Martin’s didn’t have much competition at the U.S. Open thanks to rounds like that. His problem in getting this award might be the competition he gets from…… himself??
Martin Kaymer – Round 1 Players Championship/TPC Sawgrass Stadium Course/Ponte Vedra Beach, FL – Rounds like this are a big reason why Kaymer’s 2014 season was so special. Taming Pinehurst and Sawgrass like he did is ridiculous. I doubt Martin had any idea this round would end up ‘special’ when he made the turn from the back nine (started on 10) to the front nine on Thursday at the Players. Then he came home in 29 shots to set the front nine record and tie the course record at 9 under par.
Of course Martin went on to win the Players thanks to a par putt that will be nominated for a Shutter for Shot of the Year (foreshadowing!!!), but this round set the tone for his big win, and it might have also set the tone for what happened a month later at Pinehurst.
Rory McIlroy – Ryder Cup Singles Match/Centenary Golf Course at Gleneagles/Perthshire, Scotland – Because of the format, there’s no number on this round from Rory to gauge it against his fellow nominees. What he was asked to do by his captain was go out early and dominate, put blue on the board, give the team confidence, and earn a point at all costs. Oh yeah, and do it as the number 1 player in the world against an American that has had one of the best years ever in major championships across the board. No problem, at least not for McIlroy.
Getting off to a fast start in match play is usually a good idea. Rors put his singles match against Rickie Fowler away quickly by being 6 under par through the first 6 holes. He made 7 birdies and an eagle for his match that ended after the 14th hole in a 5 &4 prison-sexing of Rickie. Obviously that’s exceptional, but to do it at the Ryder Cup in front of the home crowd, that only adds to the legend of McIlroy’s 2014.
And The Winner Is……
Whew. This is a tough one. There’s no clear cut favorite, in my opinion. Kaymer’s play in the two rounds he’s nominated for was exceptional, but an opening round 63 on a calm day at Sawgrass loses some luster when others in the field weren’t too far off his mark. I’d like to give the Shutter to Sutherland because his 59 is the only one in the history of the Old Guy Tour. Then I see that bogey on the card and realize he kind of choked on the 58 and stumbled into his 59. That leaves Rory at the Ryder Cup. Can you give an award for the Round of the Year to a round that only included 14 holes? You bet your ass. And there you have it. The Shutter for Round of the Year goes to Rory’s singles match v. Rickie Fowler at the Ryder Cup.
Did I fuck that up? I don’t think so, but here is your chance to tell me. A comment below will do just fine. If you simply disagree, hit up the poll for a chance to be heard. Did I forget someone’s stroke of genius? Go ahead and write them in.
Next on the docket is everyone’s favorite Shutter: Golf’s Whiny Bitch of the Year.