This week we are moving to the second stop of the Southern Swing, The Honda Classic. But before we get into this week’s picks I want to take a quick second to talk baseball.
Most of you probably heard the sad news yesterday of Kirby Puckett passing on. I didn’t know Kirby Puckett and don’t really like the Minnesota Twins (they have always been rivals of my Oakland A’s), but Puckett was always one of those fun players to watch. He always looked like he was having fun on the field and played the game the way it was supposed to be played. He wasn’t the most physically gifted athlete but hard-work and a love of the game got Kirby all the way to the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame. Kirby Puckett was a bright light in the game of baseball and his passing at such a young age is tragic. I would like to pass on my condolences to all of Puckett’s family, friends, and fans.
Okay, back to what we’re really here for; golf. Last week saw some dramatic action at Doral and the Blue Monster once again lived up to its name. We did alright with our picks at The Ford Championship; Retief Goosen birdied eight holes in the final round to move into a tie for 15th, Zach Johnson also had a solid week finishing tied with Goosen and several others, Ryan Palmer started the tournament strong but struggled on the weekend and dropped to T48, while Jim Furyk missed the cut. After two poor showings in a row it looks like Furyk’s game might be disappearing faster than his hairline! Okay, okay, I’m just kidding. Afterall, SirShanks doesn’t have anything on Furyk when it comes to male pattern baldness!
On to this week’s event, the Honda Classic at The Country Club at Mirasol. Mirasol is a long course and will be playing close to 7500 yards this week. The elevated greens are also going to be a test of the short game and the players who are chipping and putting the best will do well.
This week I’m all about the safe picks and who is a safer pick than David Toms? Even though he struggled off the tee last week Toms still finished one bogey away from a playoff. I like where his short game is at right now and he has had a strong start to the season.
I am also going to pick Robert Allenby this week. Allenby has struggled on American soil this year but had an incredible run in Australia at the end of 2005. He also had a good tournament here last year. Allenby is good with the driver and if he can get the putter working should do well.
Geoff Ogilvy played well in this event last year and I would expect more of the same. He has had a great start to the 2006 season and seems to think the game very well. I think Mirasol is a good setup for Ogilvy’s game.
Finally, I felt good about Ryan Palmer last week so I will look to him for a better weekend result at The Honda Classic.
So there you have it. Keep those emails coming in and I’ll talk to you again next week.