I’m surprised by the variety of big and short hitters at the top. DJ Rickie Woodland Day … and ZJ Gay and Kisner? Looks like Bellerive is more than a bomb-and-gouge setup which is what you want at a major.
Add Brooks Koepka to the list of players making a statement this morning. He’s three under through his first eight holes four shots back of the lead. Ah finally a birdie for Jordan! Brings him to -1 for the tournament. Pars for Rose and Rahm.
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.
Bubba Watson has reached -2 early as well: Look out Dustin Johnson is making a run. He birdies 8 to move to -2. That’s three birdies in a row for the top-ranked player.
Tiger tossed in a great approach into the 2nd green and cashed the 14-foot birdie putt. 1 under for the week. This is Ben Kern. Need him on the weekend. Also Tony Finau promptly triple bogeyed the 6th hole.
Alright next up on 62 watch is Charl Schwartzel! 7 under through 16 and playing a par 5. Kisner bogeys the 9th and Gary Woodland makes par. Woodland -10 Kisner -9 Koepka -8 DJ -7. Might be the last two tee times tomorrow.
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.
Tiger cleans up his par there; that’s a nifty save. Man these greens look bumpy though. I don’t envy the afternoon groups. Three 3s for the featured group at 6.
Rahm just misses his birdie try on 1. He’s run a lot of putts close today. Par for him Rose pars too. Spieth lips his birdie try. He stays at one under. Jordan Spieth sticks it on the 1st hole his 10th of the day and he’ll have a look at birdie to get to two under.
Not a terribly easy shot and he hits an okay one but it carries too much pace and he’ll be left with about 8 feet for birdie. Thomas is putting for birdie from the fringe and Rory has a little work left for birdie too.
So far only two players in the afternoon wave are taking advantage of the good conditions: Jason Dufner and Y.E. Yang. Both are -2 through 3. Both are former PGA Champions.