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00sportsman

 
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Everything posted by 00sportsman

  1. I'll second that! Happy birthday!
  2. Got a chance to play yesterday, and I was atrocious. However, these balls are straight! If I pulled or pushed one, the ball may be offline, but it got there in a straight line. More to come later.
  3. Congratulations, my friend. It's been highly entertaining hearing what you have to say. Looking forward to the next 10k.
  4. I think you're all set. I'm going to play Alex Freakin' Noren this week. Disaster just waiting to happen.
  5. It'll be very interesting to see the final numbers. I remember reading an article (I think maybe on the Wilson Duo) where the designers were discussing the idea that everyone's premium balls perform basically the same because of some of the restrictions they have to meet to get approval. Maybe not...?
  6. I'm sure I've seen something like the "Putt-Putt National Championships" on TV before. Maybe on "The Ocho?"
  7. I'd settle for a C squad right now. My squad gets an "F" for round one.
  8. Stage 1 is up. Let me know what you have for questions or ideas. Constructive criticism is always welcome!
  9. 1963 Masters highlights on Golf Channel right now. I love the highlights from 50 years ago.
  10. Bridgestone e12 soft – Official MGS Forum Review by 00sportsman Introduction I’ve now had the opportunity to test the Bridgestone e12 soft for several weeks and in various situations. Putting drills, chipping practice (at which I still stink) and regular play have allowed me to gather information about how the ball performed for me. I wanted in the worst way to get to the launch monitor but I just couldn’t make it happen, so those numbers are not available. As much as I’d like to have the numbers the real question, as always, is whether or not the ball is better for my game than the Wilson Duo Soft Optix that I currently play. Looks & Durability The balls arrived in a plain cardboard carton, just big enough for the retail box to fit in. The retail box is pretty typical, a little flashy with a cut-out to be able to see one of the balls and some technical information on the back. I requested the matte yellow, as I have more trouble following a white ball against the sky here in Florida. I’ve found the orange Wilson is the one that shows up best for me but besides white, the e12 only comes in matte red, yellow or green. The ball itself is pretty bright, with a shinier finish than the Wilson. The Wilson is also a little tackier than the Bridgestone and as the picture shows, it makes the e12 easier to keep clean. The picture is of a Wilson with one round on it, and a Bridgestone with two. New balls are placed beside them for comparison. The “B” logo isn’t too big and intrusive. For those that like a clean looking ball, I don’t think you’d find this to be a problem. I generally use the manufacturer’s alignment aid when putting, and this one struck me as no better or worse than the ones on other balls that I’ve played. Overall, I would consider this a pretty clean ball. Bridgestone also applied the “Delta Wing Dimple” pattern which is supposed to provide aerodynamic efficiency. These dimples are fairly shallow and more hexagonal than round. While I know some of the other reviewers were looking at durability issues with their test balls, I didn’t find this to be an issue. The picture above of a ball with two full rounds on it is evidence of how they held up for me. I will acknowledge that the course I played those rounds on is pretty open without a lot of the types of obstructions that mark up a ball, but we’re still looking at a ball that has roughly 100 - 120 strikes on it, not including putts. Knowing this, I took a ball outside and bounced it off the concrete about 20 times trying to mark it up. I put it in my bag with the others and when I tried to grab it to take some pictures, I had trouble picking it out. I think the picture below is of that ball. I can only find one little mark, and if you look carefully you'll see it towards the left. Overall, I can’t think of much that I don’t like about the looks and durability. I’d love to see what Bridgestone might come up with for an orange, as I still see the orange Wilson better than the yellow. That said, the ball did what I needed it to in terms of appearance and it seemed very durable for me. The Official 00sportsman Looks & Durability Rating: 13/15 Sound & Feel By far the hardest category for me to rate. Overall, I’d say the e12 soft is pretty much that. While the feel is not as soft as the Wilson Duo that I’ve been playing and it isn’t a marshmallow, it certainly doesn’t feel hard. It probably does not provide the feedback that a lot of players are looking for but if you want a soft feel, this ball would satisfy you. The cover itself is harder than the Wilson cover and as I mentioned above, it makes it that much easier to clean. I would say that the cover feels harder than the covers on other matte balls that I’ve used, but it doesn’t translate to feeling harder off the face. When it comes to sound, I would say it’s very comparable to about every other surlyn covered ball I’ve struck. It didn’t stand out to me as either loud or quiet, good or bad. It’s louder off my driver than irons, which you would expect. It seems snappier off my Ping i20’s than my Wilson C200’s. Make of that what you will. I currently play a G400 Max driver. With the driver, the sound and feel are pretty similar to what I’m used to with the Wilson ball. A really well struck shot gives almost no physical feedback and a fairly loud thud. When I get off the toe a little it lets me know, but not harshly. I have a pretty good idea of where my ball is headed, just from the feedback. With the irons and wedges, it’s a little more clicky. I played both the i20’s and C200’s, and found that it was a little snappier off the Pings. I haven’t had that experience with the Wilson ball but I haven’t been consciously paying attention to it, either. As with the driver, a really well struck ball gives little physical feedback and a solid thwack. Mis-hits with the irons won’t rattle your hands the way a high compression ball will, but there’s definitely some feedback. As far as putting is concerned, I really can’t say that the feel is any different than what I’m used to. I’m currently gaming a Guerin Rife 2-Bar mallet that I’ve loaded some extra weight on, and I generally don’t feel much of anything off the face. The e12 is soft enough that I don’t get too much of a click off the putter Overall, I’m pretty much indifferent to the sound and feel of this ball. I don’t dislike it, but there’s nothing about it that makes me think I’ve found a better sound and feel than I have in other balls. The Official 00sportsman Sound & Feel Rating: 12/15 On-Course Performance Here’s where the rubber meets the road (Bridgestone, get it?) Looks are important, sound and feel are important, but they take a back seat to performance. I got a chance to play 5 full rounds with the e12 soft, and any stats and numbers I use are comparing those 5 rounds to the 5 rounds I played previous to my testing. The 5 previous rounds were all played with the Wilson Duo Soft Optix. Starting at the green, I will say that the putting performance is satisfactory. I had the opportunity to practice on the putting green several times and did a couple of different drills, as well as putting the e12 during regular rounds. When practicing lag putts, I was able to depend on the distance being consistent. The balls all seemed to respond to the putter face the same, with no unusual jumping or bouncing. I don’t know if it’s all about the ball but my average putts per round went from 36.2 average pre-e12, to 33.6 with the e12. A lot of other factors come into play when considering putts per round but I’m confident in saying that the ball rolled consistently and true, and it certainly didn’t cost me any strokes on the green. The consistency I felt I was getting on the green, I also seemed to get around the green. My wedge play has been horrific recently and I’ve gone to a lot of pitch and run play with my 9-iron. The e12 came off the face cleanly, flew consistent distances and rolled out about the same. For the sake of testing I took a bunch of shots with both my 56 and 60 degree wedges. I can provide two pieces of information with full assurance: 1) if you want to stop the ball or spin it back this ball is definitely not the one, and 2) I can’t hit either of those clubs with anything less than a full swing right now. For general use around the green and on approach, the ball performed pretty much exactly the way you’d expect a surlyn covered ball to perform. As far as iron play is concerned, the e12 held its own. The ball flight was consistent with what I usually experience, and the ball seemed to hold up well in the wind. An increase or decrease in distance wasn’t really discernable. I clubbed myself using the same distances I had been with the Wilson, and found I was in the general area I expected to be after the stroke. On off-center strikes, the ball tended to be less off-target than the Wilson has been. When I miss, I miss on the toe and as a lefty I end up pushing it left. The e12 stayed on a line closer to the target line than the Wilson tends to. There was certainly nothing to complain about with the irons. The driver is where I would say the e12 stood out. I hit both the Wilson and the e12 off the same tee as often as I could. The e12 is straight. My typical miss is a slice and I can put a bad swing on the ball with the best of them, but even when I did the ball traveled in a straight line. The Wilson seemed to regularly out-distance the e12 by a few yards, but the e12 was significantly straighter. I’d gladly give up 4 or 5 yards from the tee to be in the fairway consistently. My last 5 rounds with the Wilson, my average for fairways hit was 34% (23/68). The 5 rounds with the e12 saw an average of 53% (35/66). Even with the misses, I hit a number of very playable drives that weren’t technically in the fairway. This is a very playable ball for someone with my type of game. It would be unfair to expect a surlyn covered ball to perform around the green like a urethane covered ball. What it does, it does well. I would like to have seen a little more distance with the driver, but it gets huge props for how straight it is The Official 00sportsman On-Course Performance Rating: 34/40 Miscellaneous There’s very little about my experience with the Bridgestone e12 soft that hasn’t been covered in the previous sections. I gave a couple away to friends to try and got these responses. “Boy, that felt good off the driver!” - My buddy David after hitting it on the 1st tee. “Well, we know it won’t last a full round.” - A fellow spy, after losing his on the 18th hole. "At least it gave me a reason to get a camo Bridgestone hat." - Me The Official 00sportsman Miscellaneous Rating: 9/10 Game Bag or Shag Bag? If those are the only two choices, it would definitely be game bag. That does not mean it’s the best ball I’ve played. It doesn’t mean I’m going to spend $30/dozen for them. It does mean that it’s far from a range ball. There’s a lot to like about the Bridgestone e12 soft. It has a soft feel, decent distance and is extremely straight. Other testers encountered durability problems, but I just didn’t experience that at all. The matte finish is harder than other matte finishes, which makes it easier to keep clean. It’s probably not a ball that I’m going to invest in, with several urethane covered tour balls in the same price range or cheaper. However, it definitely is a solid ball for what it is. The Official 00sportsman Game Bag or Shag Bag Rating: 16/20 Conclusion: Overall Score: 85/100 The Bridgestone e12 soft is a surlyn covered ball that provides decent distance and very good accuracy. While it doesn’t have the characteristics of a tour ball that a lot of low handicap players would require, it’s a solid ball. While it’s more expensive than many other options in its category, it certainly isn’t over-priced for the performance it offers. It would be a solid option for players with a higher handicap who don't necessarily lose to many balls.
  11. There’s no ball that can make up for a horrible swing. I know, because I’ve tried a bunch of different balls and I’ve made more than my share of horrible swings. I go all the way back to playing anything I could find in the woods when I was somewhere around 12: balata “eggs” with smiles on them, the hardest Top-Flite you can imagine, every off-brand with a weird dimple pattern and the Golden Bear that I loved and played for probably 5 rounds before I lost. I’ve hit a ton of golf balls. Bridgestone e12 soft in matte yellow for me to test. I used to be able to hit them decently. I was a three-sport athlete in high school and always found time to swing my sticks. I was fortunate to grow up in a town in central Maine that didn’t have a high school. The local district paid tuition for all the public students to attend the local independent school, where both of my parents worked. The local 9-hole course was owned by the school (one of the math teachers was also a PGA pro and ran the course) and one of the benefits for my parents was a free family membership. Let’s just say I made sure it got used. I was never a scratch player but I did pull off the round of my life, a 75, in the pouring rain with my track coach after practice my senior year. College, marriage and kids (all at almost the same time) slowed the golf game down to a crawl. For nearly 30 years, my golf schedule consisted of a few rounds per year with a benefit scramble or two thrown in. I wanted to play more, I just couldn’t justify the time or the expense during that period. A few years ago, I began to get a chance to play more regularly, and have gotten to the point where I’ve played 35+ rounds each year for the last couple of years. Even getting to play more regularly my game is ugly. I’m 40 years older than I was when I started, I’m way too many pounds heavier and quite a bit stiffer. I very often forget all of that and try to do things that I shouldn’t, which is one of the reasons I carry an ego-scarring 26 handicap at the moment. I’ve been playing a lot of tight courses with trouble everywhere, houses to hit, and too many opportunities to use my favorite expression: “you know I’ve got to try this.” Even with all of that, I can occasionally do some things well. My game shows the type of inconsistency that you would probably expect from someone who doesn’t really get to work on it. If I want to work on something, it’s usually in the middle of a round. As of the moment I type this, the driver is working well. Mid-irons can be decent but are inconsistent and as long as I’m 100+ yards out the wedges are OK. I stink around the green, and putting is inconsistent but improving. I tend to have mid-high flight with the driver, but my iron flight tends to be low. The balls I tried before settling on the Wilson Duo Soft Optix, with the e12s in the mix. I did finally figure out that playing the same ball consistently allows me to make adjustments that are related to my ball striking and not related to reacting to the difference in ball characteristics. I tried a few different balls to try to settle on one, and instead of playing whatever I could scrounge I started buying balls so I could play the same ball regularly. My first consistent ball was the Wilson Zip.: $19.99 for two dozen at Wal-Mart. This is a surprisingly good ball for the price and very soft, which I like. It has one significant drawback for me, and that is that it’s white. For some reason, I have a really hard time seeing white balls in flight against the Florida sky. I tried the ChromeSoft Truvis but didn’t see that one very well, and it’s unlikely that I would consistently spend the money on those at this point. I ended up with the Wilson Duo Soft Optix, in matte orange. This ball has been my go-to for the last year or so. I like the visual, I like the feel, and I hit it as far as any ball I’ve ever used. It’s a two-piece, 29 compression ball and I’ve had about as much luck with it as I could, given my current game. Enter the Bridgestone e12 soft. The Bridgestone e12 is a three-piece ball with a polymer blend Active Acceleration mantle sandwiched between a Surlyn cover and a Gradational Compression Core. The Active Acceleration Mantle is supposed to provide more energy and greater velocity at impact, while allowing for a softer core without sacrificing speed and distance. The ball is rated at 50 compression. Bridgestone has also gone with a “Delta Wing” dimple pattern which is supposed to cut down on drag and improve aerodynamics. It is recommended by Bridgestone for players with driver swing speeds of less than 105 mph. Last year when I was fitted for a driver I was consistently between 100 and 110 and since I like a softer feel, it made sense for me to try this ball. Some initial impressions: Upon arrival I was excited that the box was labeled “logo balls.” I know Bridgestone has shipped balls with the MyGolfSpy logo on them previously. Alas, it was not to be. The matte yellow finish is extremely bright. This is important to me for the visual reasons listed previously. The finish is also less sticky than the finish on the Wilson Duo Soft Optix. This may help in keeping them clean and extending the life of the balls. The Bridgestone logo is not too large or distracting. They are printed with <e12 Soft> as an alignment aid. Nowhere on the package does it give a number for compression. I know this is somewhat subjective anyway, but I was still a little surprised. I’m anxious to give them a workout and see what they can do. Can they provide straighter distance? Will I have better luck around the greens? What do the spin numbers actually say? I’m hoping to find the answers to all of these questions and more. My plan includes playing several rounds with them, doing a head to head comparison with some of the other balls I’ve played, and getting to the launch monitor to pull some real numbers. I’ve already invited some of my friends to have a go with them and provide feedback. As with almost everything else golf related, the ultimate question is whether or not they improve my game. This is the question I really want an answer to. Stay tuned to find out.
  12. at which Kuchar and Sergio got sentimental and started hugging it out
  13. That's a great post, @downlowkey. I'd like it more than once if I could. Great information, even for those of us who will never get to go.
  14. and it sounded like a bell so Kuchar and Sergio started throwing punches.
  15. Good deal. It's fun when you come away excited to get back, isn't it? My last round left me optimistic because I didn't do as much stupid stuff and basically stayed out of trouble.
  16. I had a teacher who worked for me who came into school about an hour and a half before school started. He would open the weight room and do a workout, and invited kids in to join him. He got a pretty good following for 6 a.m. He told me after about a year of this that he felt it did more to improve his teaching than any workshop or class he'd ever taken. When my son was in high school, I got him P90X, which he never did. I decided to do it myself. Lost 50 pounds in 90 days, and at 42 was in the best shape I'd been in since high school. It's not that way now, but if I could find the time and space every day, I'd go right back to it. It may be one of the best all around fitness programs I've seen.
  17. I didn't have a single one of those guys week one. In fact I don't think I had any of them week five, but I'd have to check. I'm with you on Noren, too. I'm about ready to send him down the road.
  18. So, I had one of those rounds that makes me fairly optimistic. I played Arcadia Municipal again. It's about 5800 yards, with a lot less trouble than most of the courses I play. It started like this: That's my tee shot on #1. 285 yd. par 4. I pulled out the Mitsushiba chipper that I just cut down to the same length as my putter, chipped it up to about 3 feet and rolled in the birdie. I thought about quitting right there. Overall, I went 43/45 for an 88, which is a little better than I've played in a long time. That included 32 putts (I added weight to my putter and like it!), a bunch of pars, an atrocious quad on a par 3 and a couple of doubles. The driver was outstanding. I lost one to the left, but even that one wasn't in big trouble, just left a poor angle. The big issue today was from 50 - 75 yards out. Felt like I might as well have turned around and shot it back to 125 to play from there.
  19. Outstanding! You all might want to wait until I've made my selections, so you can avoid picking anyone I select. My record for being horrible last year was unmatched.
  20. You think that's bad? I'm 33,039th. Look on the bright side, you're T-9 in the Mygolfspy pool and at least have a shot. I'm almost last, and have 0 possible points remaining.
  21. Looks pretty unbalanced to me. It sounds like I need to thank @blackngold_blood for dropping McDowell a couple of weeks ago. Don't get too excited, though. Be prepared for him to get nailed by the "00sportsman's rooting for me" curse.
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