by Jeff Skinner
The speculation continues that PGA Tour player Rory Sabbatini’s withdrawal from this week’s Memorial Tournament is due to a 30 day suspension handed out by the PGA Tour brass. Neither Sabbatini nor the Tour would confirm any suspension but rumors have persisted for a month ever since Sabo screamed at a tour volunteer and then had a shouting match on the course with Sean O’Hair. Sabbatini has the reputation of being a difficult playing partner due to his preference for faster play and his dislike for slow play on the course. In a survey taken of PGA Tour players he was voted the player you least want to be paired with on tour.
It should be noted that Sabbatini stated he needed a break from playing and since he had just qualified for the Open Championship this was a good time for him to rest. He did play in last year’s Memorial but the three years prior he took time off and only played in The U.S. Open and The Open Championship and that is his new schedule this season.
The PGA Tour insists on keeping all suspensions and fines confidential and I believe that is counter-productive. They should make the suspensions and fines public much like the NFL does. They promote their last portion of the season as “The Playoffs” much like the NFL so they should copy that also. I think if they were to make disciplinary actions public it may help the tour. Each week slow players are fined and if the public knew the culprits maybe they would be more likely to change things up a bit. By keeping fines secret, all the Tour does is feed the gossip and speculation about what really is happening. It’s time they let their fans in on what is really going on when it comes to disciplining the players.