Sunday, August 26, 2012

Tiger Woods Now Just a Very Good Pro Golfer.

 Hey, it happens to everyone. Think of your best achievement, sports related or not. Whether you had a 240 bowling average or sold more nuts and bolts than the rest of your co-workers, how long did your streak last? Ten years? Thirteen? Didn't think so. There goes Tiger Woods, major-less since 2008, in disguise on weekends in important tournaments and not the imposing assassin we'd come to expect. Woods' nasty 76 today left him in a T38 slot at The Barclays, the first event in the FedUp Cup playoffs. Not a major, but since he blanked in the majors this year, you can be assured Woods would have loved to dip his hand into the annual money grab. Why you ask, I answer...

1. He's 36. Athletes don't perform at 36 they way they did at 26, period. Sure, an occasional aberration occurs, ala Nicklaus' 86 Masters, but by and large no.

2. Long injury history. Multiple knee procedures don't go away. Even if you're not in immediate pain, the effects of multiple surgeries affect how you perform. See NFL.

3. He's playing swing, not golf. I have no idea if Sean Foley is a great golf instructor other than to observe his work. His most famous pupil ain't getting it done. Dead left pulls, Balloon right misses and especially approach shots with short clubs are woefully inadequate. Throw in some rather pedestrian putting and there you are.

4. No more legendary short game. It wasn't that long ago when Woods was in a green side bunker or chipping you were surprised when he didn't make it. Lifestyle changes can affect the amount of time you spend on these parts of the game. Anyone married? I don't know that's the case, but his short game looks like it.

5. Mental aspect. Woods was always so single minded that his opponents always knew he was more talented and had out-prepared them. Deadly combo. That's not the case any longer. Public train wrecks like his take their toll. Just a fact.

So, there you go. Expect Woods to win tournaments, he's won three this year. Don't expect the domination seen before 2009.








Swing hard, they'll make more.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

2012 US Open - Odds and Expert Picks

So far no one from the Federal Trade Commission has called me out on my self proclaimed expert status, so let's keep goin' with this year's US Open Championship at The Olympic Club, San Francisco, CA. Fitting I suppose, being an Olympic year and all. It'll play at par 70, 7073 yds., with a 670 yd. par 5 squeezed in somehow. Tree-lined fairways and tiny, well protected greens are the hallmark. Shoulder deep rough means you don't have to be long here, but you def gotta be strong. So, pick a straight hitting body builder with a magician's touch on the car hood greens. Ladbrokes will help with the odds, we'll tell you where to blow, invest your dough. Proceed....


Tiger Woods, 8/1 - Who else?Y'all know the drill. Of course he can win. Rounding into form. Driver tells the story with toothpick fairways. Hits the stinger, should win.

Lee Westwood, 12/1 - There's a reason he hasn't won a major. Ain't got the stones. Save your money.

Luke Donald, 12/1 - Missing some strength needed here, but can putt lights out. Possible, not likely.

Rory McIlroy, 16/1 - Defends. 5 tool guy. Can win.

Phil Mickelson, 20/1 - I don't see it with his wildness, but he's Phil. 1st two hyper competitive days with Piano Teeth will help. Can win.

Dustin Johnson, 25/1 - Fine as long as you don't have to think yourself around the course. Not here.

Matt Kuchar, 25/1 - Like him a ton. Long enough, straight enough. Putts like a banshee. (Banshees putt?).

Justin Rose, 25/1 - Gee, tough one. Everything says he can. Still, unknown lingering doubt. Goin' with no.

Jason Dufner, 25/1 - Player of the Year if it ended now. Take him at these odds.

 Rickie Fowler, 33/1 - If he's on, yes. If not, no. I know that sounds obvious, but Fowler has a ton of moving parts. Timing is crucial in his swing. We'll see.

Adam Scott, 40/1 - Tee to green, right up there. Broomstick is the problem. My great friend Chris Romeo is taking him, so I can't.

Steve Stricker, 40/1 - Gift pick at these odds. Game is tailor made for this course. Very possible.

Sergio Garcia, 40/1 - Nope. Serious head case. Needs help. May be there on Friday, not after.

Hunter Mahan, 40/1 - Resting on his laurels from earlier in the season. Possible, doubt it.

Jim Furyk, 40/1 - Hmm... Not sure. Has game suited for this track. Good for a flier.

Zach Johnson,40/1 - Can't count him out. Huge competitor behind the perma-smile. Like him.


 The rest of the 156 man field is at 50/1+. There's some great picks in there including a number of major champions, ie Watson, Oosthuizen, Harrington, Els, Goosen (hmm...), Love III, Singh, Yang, Immelman, Kaymer, Schwartzel, Campbell. Unfortunately, here at Average Golfer, typing isn't our strong suit, so we had to stop somewhere. However, our staff on crack, crack staff delivers when it counts with the top three finishers at the 2012 US Open Championship. As usual, gratis...


1. Matt Kuchar
2. Tiger Woods
3. Zach Johnson

Dark Horse

Carl Pettersson

In the rare circumstance that you should incur fiduciary losses based on our picks, you're strongly encouraged to contact our Customer Service Department. They are open for calls between the hours of 11:19 AM and 11:21 AM, EST, M-F. Closed on Arbor Day.

Bet early and often.



Wednesday, May 30, 2012

2012 Memorial Golf Tournament - Odds and Expert Picks

It's Muirfield Village Golf Club, Dublin, OH, Jack's place, time for the annual Jack-fest.  All the legends have their own tourney. Byron, Arnie, and of course Jack, greatest of all time. Jack's is played on a spectacular layout with the reputation for being perfectly groomed. Well, at least as soon as Jack ditched the furrowed bunkers. It's also considered a US Open prep, so many of the world's best are here, part out of respect for Jack and part to get ready for the year's second major championship.

We're here to help you make some money. Average Golfer is always more than willing to assist in the difficult business of golf handicapping. Thank us later. Time for bidness. As usual our British bookie buddies, Ladbrokes, supply the odds. We supply the brain power.* Without further ado....



Luke Donald 9:1 - Deserved off a win in Europe and #1 ranking. Can't leave him out. Could win. Lack of length may hurt him here.

Tiger Woods 12:1 - Attracts money regardless of his play. Don't see it. Could win of course, but balky putter, Captain Kirk tee shots are deadly here. Won't win.

Rory McIlroy 12:1 - In a recent funk missing consecutive cuts. Smooth swing, buts a few too many moving parts. Not this week.

Phil Mickelson 14:1 - Lefty's a threat to win whenever he tees it up. A few errant shots won't bother him. He's been recovering for 20+ years. Could win.

Justin Rose 16:1 - Like him a lot at these odds. Very well could win. Straight and long. Never a bad combo.

Rickie Fowler 16:1 - Hot golfer. Relies on timing too much for my taste, but lately his timing's been superb. Possible.

Bubba Watson 25:1 - Long odds for the Masters champ, but coming off  a month long hiatus. Odds are where they should be. Long shot.

Jim Furyk 25:1 - Nice course for him. Straight as a Mormon. Jim could win if putter cooperates. Could be said of a lot of guys.

Steve Stricker 25:1 - My pick at these odds. Strick has all the tools for this course. Steady and straight and a fantastic putter spells a win. Can win here, did it last year.

Adam Scott 25 :1 - Plays above his head many think the broomstick did it, but his putting stats are still in the bottom half. Possible, not likely.

Jason Day 33:1 - Not toDay for the Aussie.

Webb Simpson 33:1 - Long numbers for a great player. Worth a chase in my book.

Bo Van Pelt 33:1 - Best unknown player out there. I could see Bo in some Sunday shootout scenario.

Charl Schwartzel 40:1 - Great value pick. Major champ. Must be a South African deal why he's so low. Could win.

Ernie Els 40:1 - See Charl Schwartzel.

Hunter Mahan 40:1 - Not much love for a multiple winner this year. Another excellent value pick. Could win.


Other great value picks.... Keegan Bradley, 40:1, Nick Watney, 50:1, Ben Curtis, 50:1, and Ryan Moore, 50:1.



Average Golfer's 2012 Memorial Tournament Picks

1. Steve Stricker
2. Justin Rose
3. Phil Mickelson


There you have 'em, gratis. Now go make some money.


*Picking winners of golf tournaments has to be the single most difficult task in the sporting world. If you're betting with the grocery money, your car payment, or an engagement ring, you're an idiot. Average Golfer accepts no responsibility, expressed or implied, for you being a moron. That said, bet early and often.



Thursday, April 5, 2012

Tiger Woods Hangs Snap Hooks on Haney

I can snap hook a golf ball. In fact it's my preferred miss. Hooks go faster than huge balloon balls, so they're manlier. Harder to find, but manlier. Tiger Woods snapped off a couple of beauts on the 1st two holes of his Masters Toonamint today. Nice par recoveries kept him at level par, but the hooks stayed in his bag to resurface throughout the round. The 18th was such a happening, but Woods managed to scrape out a rather nice bogey to finish at level par for the day. He's in a huge pack following leader Lee Westwood's slick 67.

When ESPN's Tom Rinaldi was interviewing Woods after his round, Woods attributed his case of the smothers to "The Hank backswing with the new downswing". Gee, one would have thought that with his prodigious talent and 30+ years of experience, Mr. Woods would have been capable of separating the two. Or, the comment was a stab at Haney's recent book that details some unseemly aspects of Woods personality and expertly details how to make a Haney backswing. You decide.







Swing hard, you could get hit by a bus on the way home.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Caution - Snail Pairing at 2012 Masters

Normally the Greenjackets have everything worked out in the coordination of their yearly golf-fest, the Masters. Thursday's opening round pairing though features Kevin Na, Ben Crane, and Fredrick Jacobson. This threesome tees off at 12:14 PM. Expect darkness at about 7:15 PM. Then send a search party because Na and Crane are as slow as it gets on Tour. Well, with the exception of Jason "All" Day. Why these geniuses at Augusta didn't just include him in the trio is beyond me. They could have gone out last and played nine. Poor Fredrick may need an alarm clock. He can stuff a book in his bag as long as it isn't a golf instructional. He could bring Haney's new book and just read the gossipy parts.







Swing hard, you'll find another.

Monday, April 2, 2012

2012 Masters - Odds and Expert Picks

Gee, are we back already? Seems like just yesterday when I screwed up picking the winner of a major golf tournament. Golf is tough to pick, that's my excuse. Regardless, with the help of Ladbrokes, the venerable British betting house, we'll attempt to decipher the undecipherable, the 2012 Masters Toonamint. So, blow the cobwebs out of your wallet and follow Average Golfer into tall cotton...


Who Can't Win

This is the easy part. The Masters is really a glorified club event with some world class players and some past champions, who can play for almost life, some amateurs, and some winners of a local 9 hole muni's club championship. That's why I've always said that the Masters is fantastic spectacle, but not much of a Toonamint when you consider strength of field. At any rate Ben Crenshaw, 5000/1, can't win. Nor can the following 2000/1 takers of space... Woosnam, Lyle, Randal Lewis, (sorry Mr. and Mrs. Lewis), and Craig Stadler. At 1500/1 Corbin Mills has a snowball's chance. Mark O'Meara, Kelly Kraft, (Double K in golf circles), and Bryden MacPherson have no shot at 1000/1. At least Gary Player hung up the spikes so I can't continue to torture him for robbing the spot of a deserving player.


Who Should Win

Winning at ANGC, (That's Augusta National Golf Club for insiders), is all about course familiarity and experience. Hence, Fuzzy Zoeller is the only rookie winner since electricity. In truth, ANGC is about flowers, bridges, ponds dyed blue, and rich white dudes. That said, Eldrick, (his buddies call him Tiger), Woods is going off at 9/2. Woods dilemna will be the flat stick. He makes putts, he wins, case closed. He's striking the ball like the Eldrick of old and knows the place like he knows Nike headquarters. Nipping at his heels would be Rory McIlroy, 6/1. Young Rory's moment of truth may well be the ghosts of Masters' past, namely last year. His US Open win would suggest he's conquered his demons, but until he hits his 10th hole tee shot on Sunday, we won't know. 3rd in the favorite's triumverate would be Mr. Phil Mickelson at 12/1. Course knowledge, check. Past winner(s), check. Loves the place, check. Phil's a crap shoot. If he's on he probably wins. If he's not, he don't.


Who Wins If The Favorites Collapse?

Best of the rest? Here's where there's money to be made. Nobody bought a yacht at 9/2. Luke Donald, 16/1. Sure he could, but Augusta's a tad long for the Brit. Lee Westwood, 20/1. Possible. Good odds on a great player. Hunter Mahan, 25/1. Nice pick on the hottest player on Tour. Adam Scott, 33/1. Gee, I hope not. I liked Scott til' he started putting with a divining rod. Keegan Bradley, 33/1. Nice player. Probably doesn't have the savvy this time. Take him in 2015. Justin Rose, 33/1. Great pick at these odds. Peaking. Jason Day, 40/1. Limited field means Jason may finish toDay. Won't win. Matt Kuchar, 40/1. Seems like too nice a guy to win down the stretch here. Like him in the John Deere Classic though! Charl Schwartzel, 40/1. Not much love for the defending champ. I'd take him in a sec at these odds.

There's plenty of picks left at 50/1+ To name a few.... Watney, D. Johnson, Garcia, Bubba Watson, (no relation to Tom), Stricker, Kaymer, McDowell, Choi, Haas, Snedeker, ad nauseum.


Average Golfer's Masters Picks

1. Eldrick "Tiger" Woods
2. Justin Rose
3. Hunter Mahan

Long Shot - Angel Cabrera

Sentimental Pick - Tom Watson


There you have em'. Guaranteed money makers.







Swing hard, they make em' while you sleep.








Sunday, March 25, 2012

Tiger Woods Dialed In For Another Green Jacket?

Before two of his previous Masters victories Tiger Woods won the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill. Today he set himself up to do it again with a five stroke win over Graeme McDowell that broke his 924 day winless drought. Tiger might count his Chevron triumph, but having fewer golfers than holes, we don't. That makes him the odds on favorite to capture his fifth green jacket.

What are his chances? Well, since you asked....

1. He loves the golf course.

2. He knows it like the back of his hand, which is crucial when it comes to the nuances of the greens and knowing where to leave to the ball, even more importantly, where not to.

3. He hits a stupendous high cut shot, necessary at Augusta to have approach shots stop on greens rolling at about 14 on the old Stimp.

4. He knows the putts. Knowing is one thing, making them is another. However, experience is key at Augusta and many players just haven't played enough rounds. There's a reason Fuzzy Zoeller's the only rookie winner in modern history.

5. His tee ball appears to have returned. Woods was 2nd in driving this week and leading the Tour for the year. Crucial at Augusta because where your approach is struck from is really the key to the course.


I consider Masters' weekend to be the start to the golf season, pro as well a mine. I think it's great spectacle with a weak field. Regardless, it's a great tip off to what I hope shapes up to be a fun season, whether I'm on the course or parked in front of the TV.







Swing real hard, they make tons of em'.