Rory and JT go with irons off the tee with JT’s skirting past TW’s ball by about 20 yards. Tiger seems to be getting into a nice groove. Finds his third fairway in a row with the 3-wood off the tee on No. 2.
Woods pures his birdie putt into the center of the cup. Now two under for the championship. On the par-3 132-yard 3rd hole Tiger tosses in a dart to five feet. Will have that for two straight birds. Meanwhile not much else happening with the leaderboard. Fowler remains at five under just as he started.
Brutal three-putt from Spieth at the opener. Tiger had an early double too of course but that’s a rough start. Greens aren’t getting any smoother. Cool bit from Rickie on wearing yellow in honor of the late Jarrod Lyle. The outpouring of support has been great to watch.
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?
Who has that afternoon charge in them? Jason Day begins his afternoon with a par on the first. He’s in a good spot at three under. Tricky thing about the afternoon times is that these soft greens tend to get a bit stomped down by players throughout the day. Greens might not roll as true as players hope.
The biggest surprise is just how few surprises there were! The leaderboard seems to be going according to plan. The top 7 players in the world are all under par in stark contrast to the superstar carnage at the U.S. and British Opens. The best players appear to be playing the best. Bring on the weekend!
Tiger will have some 25 feet left to finish out his round at No. 9. Tiger finds the fairway at No. 9; not so much for his playing partners who spray it left and right. For the first time since he teed off Woods is at even par. How will he finish?
Here comes Jordan off of No. 10. It’s a great start in the fairway with the driver. One of this morning’s featured groups of Jordan Spieth (+1) Justin Rose (-3) and Jon Rahm (-2) tees off at 9:12. Spieth was grinding on the range until late last evening. The other featured group of DJ (-3) Bubba (E) and Adam Scott (-1) is already through the second hole.
Kyle Stanley is the only player on the course at -3 after a birdie at 1. DJ fails to make it four in a row at 9. He taps in for par to remain three shots behind Fowler at -2.
Andrew Landry is going low early too. He’s six under through 11 and three under for the tournament. Currently T17. Lots of guys at six under right now. Stone Scott Schwartzel ZJ. And lots more guys to tee off in the next two hours. Could be a handful of 64s today.
Spieth sticks his approach into the 9th green well inside of his playing partners. He’ll have a good look at another birdie from about 10 feet. It seems like the afternoon wave is starting to kick it into gear after a rough start. Birdies are dropping.
Okay folks Dylan Dethier here to take you through the next couple hours. Reporting live from the media center here at Bellerive and Tiger just hit a high soft chip from the collection area that grabbed and sat about five feet short.