by Jeff Skinner
- OK, Alvaro Quiros hits a tree and still shoots 65, amazing. He bounced one off a tree at 14 but salvaged a bogey, his only one of the day.
- Rory McIlroy must have been playing a lot of Augusta National on the Tiger Woods video game. He looked liked a veteran out there always putting uphill. He kept his ball in all the right places.
- So much for World Number One breaking his string of missed cuts at Augusta. Martin Kaymer shoots a dismal 78 which included a dizzying 35 putts.
- Paddy Harrington pulled a muscle in his neck and was advised not to play. But Paddy didn’t want to withdraw from This Masters and toughed it out with a 77. He’ll try and play today but doesn’t expect much.
- Cheers to a trio of amateurs who all managed to play well and honor Mr. Bobby Jones, the greatest amateur of all. Peter Uihlein, Hideki Matsuyama and David Chung all shot even par and put themselves in great shape to make the cut.
- A tip of the hat to another of the walking wounded at Augusta, Fred Couples. Freddy has been nursing that cranky back of his the past weeks but he was able to hold it together and shoot a 71.
- Speaking of painful, please give Henrik Stenson some painkillers. His 83 included an 8 on the par 3 fourth and a triple on the eleventh. Only one word describes that: ouch!
- OK, so Graeme McDowell hits 11 of 14 fairways and hits 14 of 18 greens in regulation. That’s pretty darn good at Augusta, but he shots a three over 74. The reason: his putter. He used it 36 times, 36 times! Are you kidding me? He had an abysmal day on the greens and had four three putts. If you can’t putt at Augusta you might as well buy a ticket and get yourself a pimento and cheese sandwich.
- It was wonderful to see Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus as the Honorary Starters of The Masters. It’s one of those traditions that makes The Masters so unique. But something has got to change. It is about time the members of Augusta get Gary Player to join his friends on that tee. Player is the biggest proponent of The Masters and just as important an ambassador as Jack and Arnie. I understand that the powers that be wanted to give Arnie the spotlight for awhile and now Jack has done it for two years. It is time Player joined them. These men will not be with us forever and we will never see the likes of such a talented, congenial trio ever again. The “Big Three” are fast friends and should all have the honor of standing on that first tee together.