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.
Spieth makes his putt at 7 to capture his first birdie of the day. He moves to +1. Rose gets up-and-down for par to remain at -1. Kooooooooch gets into red numbers with a birdie at 10. -1. Spieth nearly holes out for eagle at 7. His ball spun back into the hole but bounced out and settled to 2 feet. Should be a birdie for Jordan at least.
GOLF mag cover boys Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka now tied at seven under. Both two back of the leaders. Another birdie for Adam Scott and he’s six under. One to play. He hasn’t made a bogey today.
Justin Rose converts his first birdie of the day to get to -4 only two shots back of the lead. Rahm and Spieth miss and settle for pars. Our featured group meanwhile has three nice looks at birdie on No. 14. Gary Woodland just bogeyed No. 14 so there’s now a three-way tie for the lead at -6: Woodland Kisner and South Africa’s Brandon Stone.
Best quote from Tiger’s post-round presser? “I just sweat a lot.” He changed shirts after just the second hole. To be fair we’re in Missouri in August. Everyone’s sweating a lot. But I haven’t seen many others employing the two-shirt method. More on that here!
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.
Lots of waiting for the green to clear before JT swings away from over 300 yards out. He comes up short and left but draws a good lie at the edge of the fairway setting up a tricky chip.
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.
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.
I don’t know Bellerive from Bel Air. (In fact I’m not sure how to pronounce it.) But I’m told the fairways are wider than traditional bomb-and-gouge tracks like Firestone. That means well-placed shorter drives should be rewarded with better lines to attack the greens. Don’t count the Zachs out just yet!
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.
Not off to a great start? Jordan Spieth. He’s got about 50 feet for par at his very first hole of the day after a wayward tee shot. You can add Dustin Johnson to that list as well; he’s one over. Say it with me: “Lot of golf left.”