It’s gotta be tough just starting your round now; it means looking UP on the leaderboard. The top 12 players have already finished their second rounds. For those of you on “low club pro” watch Texan Ben Kern is currently low man. He’s +1 and will need a bit of good fortune to make the cut.
Oh it’s that 65 by Rickie who’s been awfully quiet since his run at Augusta. As ever with Rick it’s going to be fascinating to see how he holds up in the literal and figurative heat of being in the hunt at a major. Lotsa golf to play but for now all eyes are on Le Grand Orange.
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.
Although guys aren’t exactly testing the major championship scoring record out here it’s an incredibly bunched leaderboard. Only two players of the 100-plus on course are worse than six over — in the current conditions Bellerive doesn’t have any crazy teeth. Hard to make birdies? Maybe. But no problem sticking around par for most of the field.
Adam Scott is two under through five holes today currently five shots back of Woodland’s lead No. 12 is a 459-yard par 4. Spieth and Rahm find the fairway but Rose ends up in the fairway bunker. Jordan is the only member of this featured trio to convert his birdie putt so he heads to No. 12 at even par for the tournament.
Tiger Woods is only three weeks removed from a thrilling performance at the British Open. He will be joined by two other PGA Tour stars: Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas. Thomas is the defending champion this week and will look to capture his second major title and second-straight win at Bellerive. McIlroy will look to get back in the major winner’s circle and put a third Wanamaker trophy on his shelf.
Leaderboard update: Gary Woodland just birdied No. 11 (his second hole) to get to -7 two shots clear of Rickie Fowler Kevin Kisner and Brandon Stone. Kisner birdied his first two holes today while Stone just birdied the par-3 16th. All three players opt to lay up and find the fairway with irons off the tee.
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.
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.
Gary Woodland makes it back-to-back birdies on 2 and 3 and he’s now the solo leader at 10 under. Four under through the day. Rose birdies the 2nd and he’s to four under now. Spieth and Rahm make pars on 2. Projected (early) cut is even par.
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.
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.