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Grand Stranded

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Everything posted by Grand Stranded

  1. …and once I decide between the 3 hybrid and 5 wood and the 5 iron or 5 hybrid going in my bag it will be down to 15! I’m going full KISS in 2022!
  2. I’ve really thinned out the herd. i own only 17 clubs right now… a driver, 3&5 FW, 18,21 and 24* hybrids, irons 5-GW, wedges 52,58* two putters. I’m not looking for anything else until the ‘22 releases are out, but even then it will most likely be a tweaking situation rather than an overhaul. (The lone exception is if I can ever get my hands on the G425 Max driver I was fit for back in June. Apparently the shaft I need is golf’s version of Sasquatch. There are rumors it’s a thing, but nobody can find it.) 2022 is going to be about golf, not golf clubs for me. I know I have quality equipment, so now I really want to concentrate on getting my game back to where it should be.
  3. This was probably the strangest, and at times most frustrating years I’ve gone through since I began playing about 20 years ago. The season started off with me still feeling the effects of back issue that kept me from playing the month of January, then I struggled to regain form once I started up again. It never felt quite right until late summer. I tried everything I could think of, but never quite got back to where I was last year. 2021 was the first year in at least 7-8 years that will end with my handicap being higher than the year before. It wasn’t just my back, this was the year I finally saw a drop off in swing speed. That led to me first trying lighter weight shafts, then finally going down a flex. I’ll even move up a tee occasionally when playing with friends. I went through more equipment changes this year than I did the last 5 years combined in an effort to sort things out. It was exhausting, and something I hope to never go through again. The cherry on top of a year to forget was my developing a case of the yips with my wedges. Trust me, the combination of losing swing speed AND your short game at the same time isn’t fun. Golf seems to go in cycles though, and just when things were at their worst, they started to change for the better. At first I thought it might be a “dead cat bounce”, but after a while I regained confidence in my swing (a big part of it was no longer worrying about my back), I started to hit the ball the way I wanted, and just recently even the wedge game began coming around. Things are looking up. I also did something I should’ve done a while ago. For the past few years, I rarely played a casual round of golf. I was always playing in a tournament, league or money game setting. I didn’t realize how burned out I was until I took a break and started playing a few rounds with friends or neighbors just for fun. I’ve played sports all my life and being able to still compete in my 60’s was a big part of why I enjoyed golf… until it wasn’t. I’m playing about half the amount of comps as I was, but I’m enjoying them and the casual rounds a lot more. So that’s that… I’ll get about 3-4. more rounds in down here, then head up to Long Island for the holidays. I’ll try to play some up there, but that will be weather dependent. Most likely no more than one or two, if that. I’ll get back down around New Years, hopefully refreshed, probably 5 pounds heavier, and raring to go in 2022. What about you guys? How was your season/year? Any big changes, improvements, or issues with your game you want to share with the class?
  4. Yeah, I’m amazed at what guys put in their bags for a round of golf. I keep things light. I just got rid of a bag that weighed 5.5 lbs because it was too heavy lugging out of my Jeep and carrying to the range. Im pretty much like you, only I use a Sun Mountain 2.5 14 way bag (4 lbs.) I keep 6 balls, two gloves, a range finder, 2 Martini tees I’ve had for 3 years, a couple small ones for par 3’s, a towel and a water bottle. I can go 4 hours without eating, or just get a banana or some nuts in the morning when I grab my coffee. Now that it’s getting cooler, I’ll throw a vest or sweater in the apparel pocket. If I need more than that to stay warm, I’m heading to the bar for a scotch.
  5. Have you decided who you want to do it? Someone local?
  6. I have owned both the ‘19 and ‘21 versions, and they were two completely different sets as far as lofts. The new ones are much stronger lofted. The most common comps you’ll find are the TM 790 and somewhere between the Ping i and G series. Personally I thought the forgiveness and distance claims were overrated, as I found them nowhere near a G series iron, and had difficulty getting high enough launch with them. The 0311 XPs are a much better fit for me. For a player at your level they’re tough to beat though. I’d bet you’ll probably love them, they were just a little too much club for me. EDIT I just got all caught up in this thread, and see you went with Mizuno. Congrats, and hit ‘em well…
  7. Shaft is leaning forward, ball is in the center of my stance. My main thought is to maintain the “V” with my arms as I go back. My weight is forward, stance slightly open. I’m trying to get the club to the ball with my hands and shaft as close to possible as where they were at address (if that makes sense?) I want to keep my body and head still while pivoting the rear knee slightly. I know it sounds silly, but I can never replicate the practice strokes I take just prior to the shot. Something goes haywire with my forward stroke to the ball. I’m just as likely to chunk, blade or hit it well.
  8. When I go to the range or warm up before a round, I’m so much better with them. I know my technique is far from perfect, but a lot of this is mental with me. The closely shaved areas down here are in my head. When I go back to Long Island and hit balls sitting up a bit on bent grass, I’m a lot better. For what it’s worth I’m not alone in this. I see a lot better players than me struggle down here with this. We learn quickly to putt it whenever possible. Thanks buddy. Yeah that’s all we can do is keep plugging. I’ll say one thing though. Sometimes a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing. For instance, you said “bounce is your friend” and I’d tend to agree, but there are times it isn’t. Such as off firm tightly mowed surfaces or hard packed sand. We have 4 courses in my development, and for the high end prices they charge non members, our bunkers are amazingly inconsistent. One has hardly any sand, the other is hard packed, the next is soft and fluffy. Same with fairways. Some are dry and hard, others wet and soft. The point is, the more I’ve learned about bounce and grinds, the more I tend to overthink things. I’m to the point now that when I recently read a review of PXGs forged wedges, what was meant as a knock actually appealed to me. The man was complaining about their lack of grinds and bounces, they were just straight forward basic wedges. Like I said, that sounded very good to me. *The KISS theory.*
  9. My ball striking and putting are where I want them to be, but my short game is still my Achilles heel. I’ve played well enough to come in 1st and second in my Tuesday and Saturday leagues last week, but it’s sad how many strokes I lose around the green. My 81-83’s would be 5-6 strokes lower if I had an average short game. I’ve said this before, but the guys I play most with tell me I have the game of a single digit cap until I take a wedge out of the bag. Then I become a 23 cap. It is what it is, I guess. I’ll never be great at that part of the game, but I just have to figure out how to get better. This semi yip thing I’ve got going on is embarrassing… Tuesday League, 18th hole, par 5. I hit a nice drive, and have 210 to the hole. The problem is if I want to try to reach in two, I have to hit a shot 190 in the air to clear a waste area. Normally I’d lay up and hit a 56* with my third shot, but a bird would give me a 79. 80 is a good score, but not if you lay up to shoot it, so I hit my 3 wood. I hit it as good as I could, and it ended up hole high about 15 feet off the left edge of the green. Problem was the flag was in the right corner about 50 feet away. I proceed to stub my 52* about 6 feet, then thin it across the green barely staying on the fringe. I two putted from there and took a 6 and an 81. Two shots traveled 450 yds, the next 4 went 50 feet. That my friends, is frustrating…
  10. I remember well before you starting this thread that I told you and @cksurfdude how hard I was rooting for both of you to get where you want to be with your golf games. You’re both two very likable people, who obviously love golf. You both deserve it. This cite is truly a special place, so many great guys here who are willing to give both advice and encouragement. @Tom the Golf Nut, you’re one of those special people here. You went above and beyond to help someone here, that says all I need to know about you. We’ve all been where you are at some point Jason, this is a hard game for most of us. I had plenty of struggles with my game earlier this year, so believe me, I know the feeling. Keep up the good work, and just like so many others I’ll be following along, pulling for you. You got this!
  11. I’m thinking very seriously about putting a 5 hybrid in my bag again. It’s not that I don’t like my 5 iron, I do. It’s just that there are so many times I pull it out of the bag and wonder to myself why I won’t just make things easier for myself? If I’m in a fairway bunker or rough about 160-165 out I’m kicking myself for not having one. I love 3&4 hybrids, but there’s just something weird about looking at a 5 hybrid at setup, especially if I’m hitting it on a par 3. It just seems to my eye it has so much more loft than a 5 iron, and instead of feeling comfortable with that, I’m the opposite. My brain tells me the ball is going to go almost straight up in the air when I hit it, and it’s going to come up short. Then I swing harder to “get it there”. I know this makes very little sense, but a lot of things my brain tells me make little to no sense. Not an easy decision…
  12. I’m partial to Golfpride tour velvets, but I’ll use whatever comes with a club. I did stumble onto a version I never knew existed until I regripped my driver recently. It’s a tour velvet plus 4. It’s exactly what it sounds like, a tour velvet grip built up on the bottom like the mcc plus 4. I like it a lot, since I wasn’t crazy about the half cord version. It’s inexpensive also. ($7.99 at PGASS)
  13. I’m starting to put a few good rounds back to back again…. I played with a very big travel group (82 men 12 women) yesterday at Litchfield CC. It was week one of a 4 week net stroke play tournament where you get to throw out your worst round of the four. I shot a 85 net 69 from the just under 6200 yard white tees, which placed me in 7th(!!!!) place out of the 94 players. The funny thing is it could’ve been better. I won’t bore you with the details, but my short game continues to cost me strokes, even with the most basic of shots around the green. I was very happy with how I played though, and was shocked to see some of the scores players better than me put up. You have no idea how you place until everyone is finished however, because players are assigned to one of four different tee boxes based on their ability. The course has a lot of doglegs and water. It also had very slow greens. Add to that the Bermuda rough is thick and deep this time of year and it was a very hard course for the higher caps no matter which tee they played. As for the better players, those same factors hurt them also, as they have no room for error in a low net tournament. I think I was in the sweet-spot as far as strokes(I asked to be moved back one tee to get a couple more), and just happened to have a good day compared to the others who got around the same as me. We’ll see what happens next week in round two at a neighboring Pawleys Island course, but I’m thinking only about 20 of us have a realistic chance at winning this thing. Yesterday was a great start, I just hope I keep playing the way I’ve been lately.
  14. Today was a very good day. I thought I could feel my game coming back around recently, and today confirmed it. I played in my Tuesday Members league, and with the exception of a couple of bad breaks, and some sloppy wedge play around the green, I couldn’t be happier. I shot 38-39-77 on our par 71 Fazio course. My driver was good (other than two miscues)and my irons were terrific, to the point where I never took the cover off my 3 or 5 woods. My irons were better than they’ve been all year, by the time we came to the last 4-5 holes my confidence was soaring. It felt so nice to play golf, not golf swing… just pick a club, look at the target, and let it go. That sounds so simple, but when you’re struggling, point and shoot isn’t your first thought, worrying where the ball will go is. I’m waiting on a set of PXG irons I ordered last week, but the Rogue X were so good today, I had to fight myself not to call and cancel the order. Every time I want to replace them, they come out of the corner fighting tooth and nail to stay in the bag. I’m going to sleep on this tonight and make my decision tomorrow. When I’m hitting them well, I can’t imagine getting more out of a set. They just fit me very well. On the other side of the coin, I threw away 4 or 5 stokes from within 20 yards of the green with my short game. That’s something that has to get better, and now that the oppressive summer heat has eased up, I’ll be willing to work on it at our short game area. I’m not going to stress over it tonight though… I’m going to just enjoy the things I did well.
  15. Played in a low gross low net event yesterday. I was killing the driver, and my irons were very good also. I was playing very well until the 15th hole par 5. I hit a driver, 3 wood and was about 25 yards short of the green. I tried to pitch a wedge up close but that sideways thing off the hosel happened. Then it happened again. And again. I putted my next shot on and walked off with a snowman. The next hole is a short 125 yard par 3. I took a 9 iron and… another hosel rocket. Tried to chip on… did it again. Walked off with a 6. Hit the green in two on 17 so thankfully no need to hit a wedge, made a par and then, because my brain was fried at that point, I hit my 3rd shot on the par 5 18th into the waste area from 100 yards away with you guessed it… gap wedge. Another 7. i shot 41 on the front, and was two over on the back thinking birdie after 2 shots on 15, went 8 over on the last 4 holes and ended up with a 46. Ended up with 87. If the shanks started earlier it could’ve been a 100. I’ve been trying to stay positive on the course lately, but it’s hard sometimes. When my game goes off the rails it’s the definition of a train wreck.
  16. Just one of those days… at our level, we’re always going to have them. Reading your prior post about your final week of league play made me realize how fortunate I am to be down here in M.B. We just had our league championship wrap up two weeks ago, but just like the PGA Tour we started right back up the next week. ***that’s the only part of our league that resembles the Tour btw. I can play in a league any day of the week down here, both at my club or in travel groups. So between that and the various comps that are seemingly always going on I actually look forward to heading up north for the holidays. I marvel at the guys who play 5-6 days a week year round. I don’t know how they do it.
  17. We have a new contender in what has become a seemingly endless search for a set of irons that will relegate my Rogue X’s to a second bag I can keep up on Long Island. It looks like I’ll be getting a set of PXG 0311 Gen3 XP irons dirty in about 2 weeks(?). @cksurfdude I’m going to give those MMT 60g shafts you have a try with these. I almost went with the 0211DC’s at $78 per with this shaft, but I went with what I think will be a more forgiving head in the XP. I can’t wait to see how this movie ends…
  18. So I just saw this post 15 minutes after I posted about struggling with putts inside 6 feet. I have a Scotty Newport 2.0 with a thin pistol grip… off to the putting green I go!!!
  19. What is going on with the Sub 70 putter? Are you going to leave me the last of the Mohicans using a Tracy?
  20. I got back last night from a 10 day trip to Long Island to visit family. I got to play twice, once with friends and then with my two nephews. I’m really starting to hit the ball a lot better now that my back feels good (knock wood). It’s such a silly game though. My full swings are back on point, but my putter has suddenly become an issue. I’m fine with a long lag, or something between 6-10 feet, but I’ve been pulling everything inside that 6’ distance. It’s gotten to the point where I won’t take anything inside two feet because I know I have to sort it out for league and comp play. That’s easier said then done though as I can’t figure out the problem… it doesn’t feel like I’m doing anything different. Ah well, I’m not going to stress over it. How often does a mid cap have every part of his game working well? I had a great time up on the Island and it seems the sweltering summer we had down here is finally over. I’m going to enjoy the next 6-7 weeks down here before I head back up for Thanksgiving through Christmas.
  21. My club kicked off our annual Match Play tournament this morning, 64 players in 4 flights. Winner of the A plays the C, B plays the D then the two winners play for the title. I was in the B flight which consisted of players within the 11.5 -16 range. I drew a player I know very well and since he’s a 12 he gave me 2 strokes. I fell behind by 2 after four holes, but finished the front with 3 pars( one on a stroke hole) and a birdie and I was up 2 at the turn. I kind of got boat raced on the back 9, even though I played pretty well. My opponent had a birdie, 6 pars and 2 bogeys on the back. As well as he played I still had my chances. My putter was a fraction off though. On 15 & 16 I had par putts of 4-5 feet and I thought I made both, but they went over the edge of the cup. That gave him a 1 up lead, and on 17 I made a 20 foot par putt to halve and send the match to the par 5 18th. We both hit very good drives, but he laid up perfectly in front of the waste area 100 yards from the pin. I felt a par wasn’t going to catch him, so I decided to go for it from 220 out with my 3 wood, which is something I might pull off 1 out of 10 times. I hit it as good as I can, and had it been 5 yards to the left, it would’ve got the front of the green. Instead I went into a deep green side bunker. My opponent put his wedge to about 20 feet, and I did the same with my bunker shot. My birdie putt broke my heart. It looked perfect, caught the left edge at a speed I thought for sure was perfect, but the ball did a horseshoe around the cup and ended up on the front lip. (Ugh.) My opponent lagged to 3 feet, and to his credit made the putt to end the match 1 up. We both played really well, but somebody had to lose, and today it was me. The two other players in our 4 some are both excellent players. When we finished they told me and my opponent how impressed they were watching us play today, and it was a shame either of us had to lose. So, in the end, a loss, but a good day to build on going forward.
  22. Two other LH players I know have asked to hit mine. One is a 10 the other is about an 18. They both want to get a set of halos now. The craziest thing was what happened yesterday. My cart partner was so impressed with how different my iron game looked, he hit 3 balls LEFTY with my 7 iron and ordered a set in the pro shop when we finished league play. Hes a natural LH but plays golf RH. When we saw his lefty swing we all said it was as good or better than his RH one.
  23. So I got a call from the pro shop, which runs our league, and the Barefoot Cup competition I told you about yesterday. They told me that it was my choice whether to play or not, but not to worry about taking the spot of another player if I wasn’t able to play, or finish because of my back issues. Apparently it’s a hard cut of the 40 top money winners., rather than add another in the case of a withdrawal they would go with 39, 38 and so on. #41 had no chance of getting in. I gave it a try, but just didn’t get it done. I wasn’t 100% but a lot of the mistakes I made had nothing to do with my back, or not playing for two weeks. My short game wasn’t good, and my short irons were pretty bad. It’s funny, the driver was the club I thought I would struggle with, but I hit it great. Go figure. Anyway, I shot a 91 () net 78 which didn’t sniff the top 10 in either gross or net, so I’ve been eliminated from the next two weeks of net stroke play. The good news is I’m typing this 3 hours after my round ended, and my back feels pretty good. I’ll take that as a nice consolation.
  24. That’s not what I was told, but… As far as I know retailers don’t get invoiced on a product until it ships?
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