I don’t know! But I thought it was interesting. The name of the game appears to be 1. Fairways and 2. Distance control with the irons. Sticking with Tiger but I think there’ll be plenty of variety among the leaders.
Our trio is now playing their second par 3 of the day the 224-yard 16th. All three find the green and will have nice looks at birdie. Adam Scott is putting a quietly excellent round together. He’s four under at the turn and only three shots behind Kisner.
Rory Rahm Gary Woodland. Not Zach Johnson. Nor Zach Johnson. Everyone! They’re gonna tear this place to shreds. If it does rain on the weekend I could see 20 under winning. Rory was my pick to win before the rain and the soft conditions only make me like his chances more. Bring on the red numbers!
Rory hits a beautiful approach setting up a short birdie try of about six feet. TW hits a pitching wedge that refuses to spin back toward the hole leaving him with about 15 feet for birdie. JT also hits a solid approach to about 15 feet away from the hole.
Okay let’s take stock of the leaderboard shall we? Rickie Fowler just wrapped up a presser in which he was understandably upbeat after opening with a five-under 65. There’s nobody at four-under but there’s a whole squad at three-under: Cook Poulter Perez Day and Gay all posted rounds of 67 and three more — Cink Grace and Schniederjans — are on their 18th hole. Scores aren’t insanely low as some predicted but there are a bunch of guys in red figures.
DJ does it again. Another great putt at 12 leads to yet another birdie. He’s now in sole possession of second place at -4 just one behind Fowler. Here’s a look at DJ’s long birdie make at 11: Check out what our own Alan Shipnuck had to say about the morning’s featured group of Tiger/JT/Rory:
Charl Schwartzel is storming up the leaderboard now. He’s six under through 13 and six under for the week. Tied for fourth right now. Kisner now jumps back into a tie for the lead. He’s nine under along with Woodland. Both through 13 holes.
Dustin Johnson in with a 66. He’s seven under and T3 right now three off the lead. Zach Johnson is another guy trying to lock down a Ryder Cup spot. He’s six under for the tournament and T5 right now.
Tiger’s birdie never has a chance and he taps in for par. Rory putts to tap-in range for his par and JT misses his birdie attempt on the low side. Now it’s Tiger’s turn. Rickie Fowler birdied No. 7 to get to -4 with two holes to play. He’s the outright leader now with Stewart Cink hanging in at one shot back.
Brooks Koepka just birdied No. 1 to get to -4 on the day and -5 for the tournament — only four shots back of the lead. My goodness Kevin Kisner is a man on fire. He’s made six birdies on his front nine to make the turn in 29 strokes. Currently at -9 for the tournament and one shot clear of Gary Woodland.
It will favor bombers and there a lot of those. Take your pick. Rahm. DJ. Justin Thomas. Rory. Within that subset take the guy with the hottest putter which is far more variable and harder to predict. I like Tony Finau because…what’s not to like?
Middle of the green for Tiger after a too-safe approach with a wedge. Rory does a little better but JT’s was by far the best; he’s inside 10 feet for birdie. More like 25-30 for Woods.