who has actually played with a legit scratch golfer/pro level player?

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  • hm59hm59 MDMembers Posts: 306 ✭✭✭✭
    Played a few times with a former Canadian Tour player and numerous rounds with college players and club pros who are scratch or +. The Canadian Tour player was putting the ball in places off the tee I had never seen on my local track. The other guys are both relatively long and short hitters but they just don't put themselves in much trouble around the course. I've noticed all good players seem to have a routine that is mechanical before every shot regardless of what happened the previous shot.
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  • 3 Jack Par3 Jack Par I only answer to "Ace" now Members, ClubWRX Posts: 6,130 ClubWRX
    In my experience, there's a pretty big difference between scratch and guys who are +2-3 and are in the mix to win local and state amateur events with solid fields. I'm around scratch, and I'm usually middle of the pack in those events if I play around my normal game. I can get toward the top third of the field if I play well, but the guys who compete for titles are on a very different level as far as being able to turn bogeys into pars and avoid blowups. There's not a ton of difference in ball striking compared to me. I hit is as far or farther than most people I play with in tournaments (there are definitely exceptions -- some guys really mash it), but where I'll hit a few bad shots (mostly tee shots) every round that lead to giving away shots, the top guys are just more consistent.

    One year in the state mid-Am, I had a good first round and in the second round, I played in one of the later groups with a guy who qualified for the U.S. Mid-Am and another guy who has won tournaments around my area. The latter guy absolutely got in the zone on the greens, and made everything to shoot 63. He kept it in play off the tee (not overly long), hit probably 15-16 GIR, but he wasn't hitting it to 3 feet every time or anything. The hole just must have looked like a manhole cover to him. It was fun to watch. I've never played with a tour pro, but having attended tournaments and seen those guys play, that's a whole other level.

    All that said, other than in tournaments and guys I know who are scratch/+ players, I can count on one hand the number of legit scratch players I've been paired with randomly, and I've gotten paired up many, many times when traveling where I've gone to a course as a single or when I play with my dad and we can't find anyone else to join us.
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  • Dgott0502Dgott0502 Members Posts: 16 ✭✭
    Where in south jersey are you located?
  • RodrigoNicelyRodrigoNicely Members Posts: 782 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited Nov 28, 2018 #185
    I’ve played with a pga tour winner, and have also played with multiple pga and web guys. Truly is amazing to watch how good these guys are around the green.
  • FourTopsFourTops Banned Posts: 1,676 ✭✭
    Played 9 with Couples in the late 80's because he did a demo stop and the pro was my friend. He said "don't say nice shot because I hit them all that way".
  • seanplaiseanplai Members Posts: 24
    A couple friends and I were playing a cheap, easy course a couple years back. On 18, this guy walks up and says it's just him, can he join for the last hole. We say absolutely. It's a short par 5, probably 480, that dog legs right with trees lining the fairway. This guy ropes a drive dead center of the fairway, hits a short iron to like 5 feet, walks up and casually sinks his putt for eagle, says thanks, and walks to his car before any of us even get to our balls on the green. To this day, that encounter blows my mind. We're convinced the guy was just flying around the course shooting under on like every hole.
  • dhacker56dhacker56 Lefty Boomers Posts: 805 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I used to play in a charity scramble every year with a guy that was a PLUS 3 at the time. The final time we played they told us when we got there the format was to be "best ball" not scramble. Not a good move on their part. There was no Handicap minimum, the tees were not the tips and he proceeded to shoot 5 under on the front nine. We ended up 14 under. When they asked us at the scoring tent if we played scramble. We told them, "No, that was not the format for the day...Was it?" He was simply a phenominal golfer. His brothers were 3 and 5 and I was an 8.
  • BKeelsBKeels Members Posts: 1
    I've played with a young guy that has qualified for 2 US Opens and is just trying to get started as a professional. I've played him in our club championship final 3 times and the last year we played each other he beat me 12&10 (36 hole final). I'm a +1. Scratch golf and tour level golf are about as far apart as scratch and a 6 hdcp.
  • veebs007xveebs007x Members, Sponsors Posts: 315 ✭✭✭✭
    oregongolf wrote:


    I've seen a 59, two 60s, 3 or 4 61s and a dozen or so 62s. Scary how many good players there are out there that people will never hear of.




    I work 45 hours a week, and am an absolute nobody....+ 4 hdcp and played in 2 USGA events this year (medalist at one), attempted one web.com qualifier on a vacation day and successfully qualified and shot 137 (MC), and just shot 62 (-10) a few weeks ago...people ask me all of the time why I don't go play...it costs a TON of money and even if you "make it", its only a guaranteed job for a year, and getting to the point of my post....like the quote in my post, there are SOOOOOOOO many guys that can shoot NOTHING on a golf course.
  • KeeganKKeeganK Members Posts: 1
    Caddied for a guy in a charity tournament in high school and this group paid for the guy who was #1 on the Web.com tour the previous year to be on their team. Amazed me all day with his shots.



    First hole, 360yd Par 3 with water cut into the front left side of the green with a good deal of trees long. Lasered it for him at 345 to carry. Dude pulls a drive out and blasts it 25 yds over, possibly because it was downhill?



    At the green I'm tending to the guy I'm caddying for short of the green. We don't even see the dude he's in so deep and we hear ball and watch it roll up to 5'. Once it's his turn he strolls up and taps it right in for a birdie. Was really the only scrambling he did all day. The rest was fairway, green, put or two.
  • jdubya13jdubya13 New EnglandMembers Posts: 270 ✭✭✭✭
    As a college student, I caddied for a pro at a local Nationwide event after carrying for him when he threatened the course record at the club I worked at. We didn’t make the weekend, but I was in Matt Jones’ group before he got on the big tour. Jeff Quinney was stackin’ and tiltin’ next to us on the range and Anthony Kim made his pro debut that week. It was ridiculous the shots these guys hit.



    When I lived in AZ, I had a chance to play a handful of times with a former PGA Tour member who retired because of injuries. Super nice guy, made it look easy.



    I’ve got a buddy that has played in some USGA events - strips it off tee, super accurate with his irons, putts lights out.



    Must be nice.... ��



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  • DrRob1963DrRob1963 Members Posts: 202 ✭✭
    NM44 wrote:


    I play a decent amount of public course golf in the south Jersey area(usually one or two rounds a week and one on the weekend). I play a lot of my weekday rounds as a walk on single. I've been paired with all types. I am a mid capper and on a good day can get the ball out there pretty deep but i have never been paired with one who blew me away. I've seen guy hit the ball my distance, seen good putters, seen plotters that shoot in the low 80s, old guys that make a ton of pars,etc. But I've still have yet to see someone shoot within 5 of par let alone 60's or even close. Just wondering if you guys have seen the same or if its just same run of bad luck for me to not catch someone super good.
    Hey NM44, I have played with many scratch & pro golfers over the years, but guess what? You get a better idea about the best by just following them in a tournament! You don't have to worry about your own game, and you can fully concentrate on theirs. Get to the course early, pick a good group and follow them for all 18. Too hard following the leaders on Sunday afternoon - too many people & you can't get close enough very often.

    My best experience? Turned up early to the Australian Open at The Lakes on Saturday in 1992 and followed nine-time major winner, Gary Player as he shot a 68 (-5) that morning. There were four of us! He was concentrating on his game for sure, but talking to us about the holes and how he was going to hit that shot - high, low, draw, fade, dead straight - and he could do it every time. Just magnificent ball striking!
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  • oregongolforegongolf Lefty Boomers Posts: 8,576 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    veebs007x wrote:

    oregongolf wrote:


    I've seen a 59, two 60s, 3 or 4 61s and a dozen or so 62s. Scary how many good players there are out there that people will never hear of.




    I work 45 hours a week, and am an absolute nobody....+ 4 hdcp and played in 2 USGA events this year (medalist at one), attempted one web.com qualifier on a vacation day and successfully qualified and shot 137 (MC), and just shot 62 (-10) a few weeks ago...people ask me all of the time why I don't go play...it costs a TON of money and even if you "make it", its only a guaranteed job for a year, and getting to the point of my post....like the quote in my post, there are SOOOOOOOO many guys that can shoot NOTHING on a golf course.




    That's still excellent golf. Did you try to play professionally already?
  • jck_pga339jck_pga339 Members Posts: 1
    I’m a PGA Professional play and got a chance to play with Ben Kern who won low PGA Professional at this years PGA. His putting and ball striking is unbelievable. He shot 61 to my 71 and he easily could’ve had a few more putts fall. I’ve played with a lot of elite golfers but he takes it to another level.
  • BRM569BRM569 Hi Members Posts: 387 ✭✭✭✭
    edited Nov 29, 2018 #196
    I am a PGA Professional club pro and have a friend who is on the PGA Tour, won a tour event this year, made the Ryder Cup team and had been inside the top 25 on the OWGR for a while now.



    We don't usually play golf together as it's not his go to thing to do on this time off, but we finally got a round in this past summer. We actually were talking about playing a casual round with some buddies vs a tour event where he's out there grinding over every shot. He happily admitted that he'd get beat by good players (scratch or + handicaps) or guys on Web or making their way through Q School all the time...but get them in a tournament playing against him and they'd have no shot. That's what makes the difference in my opinion, the ability to turn it on, make the shots under pressure and strategically think your way around the golf course.



    He had never seen the course before the day we played and shot 67 (Par 72) and could have easily been 62 and it looked like a 72-73. I shot even par 72 as did a friend (another PGA club pro) and we discussed after how we were amazed that he hit every shot (high, low, draw, fade) but that the ball never had more than 5 yards of movement...drives were pounded and on a string. Putting & green reading (without really trying) were fantastic with the exception of the first hole which was a 3-putt bogey. (Greens were lighting that day, he said they were faster than they were on tour). He didn't miss it seemed from outside 10 feet. It was easily the best ball striking show I'd ever witnessed and didn't really even realize it until later because we were BS-ing and having a good time.



    Im a scratch player and I'd assume he's about a +5 or 6...not even close.
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  • wchahnwchahn BostonClubWRX Posts: 114 ClubWRX
    A friend of mine is a +3 - he grew up playing against several guys on the PGA Tour. Its a joy to watch him play. As others have said, the ability to put any mistake back in play is amazing.
  • WalterWalter Belgian Golfer Members Posts: 700 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Some of my good friends are between -3 en 1 hcp, we play together on a regular basis, at our Home Club's.

    i'm a passionate golfer but they play a game that is from an other level.

    In my opinion every round of golf with friends is a blessing, but I always seem to play my best when playing with these high level players, everything seems possible / more easy, no nonsense just proper great golf. :-)
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  • veebs007xveebs007x Members, Sponsors Posts: 315 ✭✭✭✭
    oregongolf wrote:

    veebs007x wrote:

    oregongolf wrote:


    I've seen a 59, two 60s, 3 or 4 61s and a dozen or so 62s. Scary how many good players there are out there that people will never hear of.




    I work 45 hours a week, and am an absolute nobody....+ 4 hdcp and played in 2 USGA events this year (medalist at one), attempted one web.com qualifier on a vacation day and successfully qualified and shot 137 (MC), and just shot 62 (-10) a few weeks ago...people ask me all of the time why I don't go play...it costs a TON of money and even if you "make it", its only a guaranteed job for a year, and getting to the point of my post....like the quote in my post, there are SOOOOOOOO many guys that can shoot NOTHING on a golf course.




    That's still excellent golf. Did you try to play professionally already?




    Thanks, I appreciate it. To answer your question...yes and no. I turned pro after college but literally had no money to go chase monday qualifiers or do Q school for any tour. I was basically playing local pro-ams and tiny mini tour stuff. I did this for a few years hoping things would change from a financial backing standpoint but they never did. I didn't want to place the rest of my life on the side burner when I didn't have all of the means necessary to chase the dream... Not sure I was ready 11 years ago but confidently feel I am good enough now (multiple tour friend's opinion as well). I got my amateur status back and took a job for a couple of years with a major OEM working in R&D in Carlsbad. I am now completely out of the golf industry but my game is getting better and better each year. I have a good career and solid future but I also know I could go play with those boys. Tough to balance logic and emotions. We will see what happens...stay tuned!
  • ckayckay Members Posts: 3,999 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    edited Nov 30, 2018 #200
    Outside of competition, I have only seen one guy shoot one over in 20 years of public play. Quite boring golf to witness, fairway, green, 2 putts. I would love to see a mid 60s round but have not been paired with such a player.



    One of the cart guys at Sun Ridge commented on my 80 I walked off of the course with. Said that's a great score, so I asked what he typically shot, 70s? He non-nonchalantly said, "Yeah, 60s..." LOL! ****...that is the all-time passive brag.
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  • FuliopedFulioped Members Posts: 46 ✭✭
    I played with this one tour player during my pro am. He’s probably middle of the pack but still, very impressive. Could clearly see the differences between amateurs and touring pros ie. the way they manage the course etc.
  • fairways4lifefairways4life Members Posts: 1,553 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    I used to work at a large golf resort where several of the employees were former college players and mini tour players. I played a lot of golf with those guys. My takeaways:



    -- They hit some terrible shots, but rarely ever twice in a row. If they get into trouble off the tee or they hit a bad approach shot, you can usually count on the next shot being good. Those of us with handicaps typically do the opposite --- we let one bad shot lead to another and compound the problem until we've made a triple.



    -- They almost always had the same movement on their ball. Some guys would have a little draw, some would have a little fade, but they were always consistent. Those of us with handicaps will often hit one ball that moves a little left and the next ball will move a little right and the next one is fairly straight with no real rhyme or reason.



    -- It rarely felt like they were really lighting it up, even when they were. We'd get done and I'd add up a guy's card and think "whoa he just shot 66? Didn't even feel like it."



    -- I felt like I improved a lot just by playing with them. I always tried to pay real close attention to the subtleties, especially during the short game. Shaft lean, ball position, clubface angle, etc. What were they doing differently than me? It was an easy way to soak up some knowledge.



    -- Now that I no longer work there, I RARELY EVER see anything even remotely close to that level of play at the public courses I now play.
  • mosesgolfmosesgolf Members Posts: 6,871 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    I've played with Charlie Wie and this scratch player from the blue tees is not anywhere sniffing CW's level of play. This somewhat WRX long player was definitely shorter than CW (short knocker on the PGA Tour) by a good 10 yards. The sound and trajectory of all his shots were also on a whole "nother" level. image/biggrin.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':D' />
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  • LokiLoki Members Posts: 1,166 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    edited Dec 1, 2018 #204
    BRM569 wrote:


    I am a PGA Professional club pro and have a friend who is on the PGA Tour, won a tour event this year, made the Ryder Cup team and had been inside the top 25 on the OWGR for a while now.



    We don't usually play golf together as it's not his go to thing to do on this time off, but we finally got a round in this past summer. We actually were talking about playing a casual round with some buddies vs a tour event where he's out there grinding over every shot. He happily admitted that he'd get beat by good players (scratch or + handicaps) or guys on Web or making their way through Q School all the time...but get them in a tournament playing against him and they'd have no shot. That's what makes the difference in my opinion, the ability to turn it on, make the shots under pressure and strategically think your way around the golf course.



    He had never seen the course before the day we played and shot 67 (Par 72) and could have easily been 62 and it looked like a 72-73. I shot even par 72 as did a friend (another PGA club pro) and we discussed after how we were amazed that he hit every shot (high, low, draw, fade) but that the ball never had more than 5 yards of movement...drives were pounded and on a string. Putting & green reading (without really trying) were fantastic with the exception of the first hole which was a 3-putt bogey. (Greens were lighting that day, he said they were faster than they were on tour). He didn't miss it seemed from outside 10 feet. It was easily the best ball striking show I'd ever witnessed and didn't really even realize it until later because we were BS-ing and having a good time.



    Im a scratch player and I'd assume he's about a +5 or 6...not even close.




    I'm curious, in a non-tourney round, what would the stakes have to be for the PGA player in question to have a competitive round with the Web.com and mini-tour players. Did you ever ask him that?
  • Santiago GolfSantiago Golf I Strive to make you Better Members Posts: 5,032 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Loki wrote:

    BRM569 wrote:


    I am a PGA Professional club pro and have a friend who is on the PGA Tour, won a tour event this year, made the Ryder Cup team and had been inside the top 25 on the OWGR for a while now.



    We don't usually play golf together as it's not his go to thing to do on this time off, but we finally got a round in this past summer. We actually were talking about playing a casual round with some buddies vs a tour event where he's out there grinding over every shot. He happily admitted that he'd get beat by good players (scratch or + handicaps) or guys on Web or making their way through Q School all the time...but get them in a tournament playing against him and they'd have no shot. That's what makes the difference in my opinion, the ability to turn it on, make the shots under pressure and strategically think your way around the golf course.



    He had never seen the course before the day we played and shot 67 (Par 72) and could have easily been 62 and it looked like a 72-73. I shot even par 72 as did a friend (another PGA club pro) and we discussed after how we were amazed that he hit every shot (high, low, draw, fade) but that the ball never had more than 5 yards of movement...drives were pounded and on a string. Putting & green reading (without really trying) were fantastic with the exception of the first hole which was a 3-putt bogey. (Greens were lighting that day, he said they were faster than they were on tour). He didn't miss it seemed from outside 10 feet. It was easily the best ball striking show I'd ever witnessed and didn't really even realize it until later because we were BS-ing and having a good time.



    Im a scratch player and I'd assume he's about a +5 or 6...not even close.




    I'm curious, in a non-tourney round, what would the stakes have to be for the PGA player in question to have a competitive round with the Web.com and mini-tour players. Did you ever ask him that?




    Probably straight up with the web guy, depends on the mini tour player. Some tour pros do not go super low in practice because they are mearly going through the motions and not grinding on every shot, some take it like its Sunday on tour
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  • moledaxson57moledaxson57 Members Posts: 53 ✭✭
    I am friends with a scratch player and a mini tour player, it amazes me how far they can hit the ball but to the distance they want. They hit 5 woods and long irons that carry just as far as my drives
  • Double Mocha ManDouble Mocha Man Members Posts: 313 ✭✭
    I played 9 holes with a guy who played a sub tour, below the web.com tour. He was rusty, hadn't played in a few months. I remember the 8th hole, a downhill 351 yarder. He hit a high floating drive that landed on the green and just stopped. I ripped a 290 drive down the middle... downhill, remember. I knocked a wedge to within 4 feet. Made it for the birdie. He rolled in his 6' putt for an eagle. He shot a rusty 33 (par 36). I shot a respectable 38 and trailed by 5 strokes
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  • Double Mocha ManDouble Mocha Man Members Posts: 313 ✭✭
    texcrom wrote:


    Played in several pro-ams over the years - Craig Stadler, John Cook (twice), and Joey Sindelar.



    All were great fun, and great experience to play with.




    Did Mr. Cook remember you the second time around?
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  • BRM569BRM569 Hi Members Posts: 387 ✭✭✭✭
    Loki wrote:

    BRM569 wrote:


    I am a PGA Professional club pro and have a friend who is on the PGA Tour, won a tour event this year, made the Ryder Cup team and had been inside the top 25 on the OWGR for a while now.



    We don't usually play golf together as it's not his go to thing to do on this time off, but we finally got a round in this past summer. We actually were talking about playing a casual round with some buddies vs a tour event where he's out there grinding over every shot. He happily admitted that he'd get beat by good players (scratch or + handicaps) or guys on Web or making their way through Q School all the time...but get them in a tournament playing against him and they'd have no shot. That's what makes the difference in my opinion, the ability to turn it on, make the shots under pressure and strategically think your way around the golf course.



    He had never seen the course before the day we played and shot 67 (Par 72) and could have easily been 62 and it looked like a 72-73. I shot even par 72 as did a friend (another PGA club pro) and we discussed after how we were amazed that he hit every shot (high, low, draw, fade) but that the ball never had more than 5 yards of movement...drives were pounded and on a string. Putting & green reading (without really trying) were fantastic with the exception of the first hole which was a 3-putt bogey. (Greens were lighting that day, he said they were faster than they were on tour). He didn't miss it seemed from outside 10 feet. It was easily the best ball striking show I'd ever witnessed and didn't really even realize it until later because we were BS-ing and having a good time.



    Im a scratch player and I'd assume he's about a +5 or 6...not even close.




    I'm curious, in a non-tourney round, what would the stakes have to be for the PGA player in question to have a competitive round with the Web.com and mini-tour players. Did you ever ask him that?




    I didn't ask that question directly, no. It sure seemed that if was "out with the boys" it was all in good fun and that was most important. He'd never get into that mindset unless it was a Tour event I don't believe. I suppose that if he were to be super competitive during a money game or casual round, it would take away a bit from the Tour events and the focus and grit it takes to be competitive. Plus, I'm sure playing golf like that every time is draining physically and mentally...hence making those times playing not very fun.
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  • theboypinoytheboypinoy Members Posts: 2,080 ✭✭


    Played in tournament rounds with a few touring professionals.



    Off the top of my head:



    Kurt Kitayama (Web.com Tour and Asian Tour)

    Austin Smotherman (Winner on Latinoamerica Tour this year, will be Web.com Tour next year)





    Also Cameron Champ




    Kitayama won this past week on the European Tour, and everyone's heard of Champ by now and what he's done so far on tour.
  • getitdailygetitdaily Members Posts: 2,443 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    I am a scratch. With a 4.5 yr old and a 5 month old at home most of my rounds are as close to home as possible and not with a steady group. I primarily play 2 courses and almost always call the day before I play to get paired up with a 2 or 3some as early as possible. Humbly stated, I'm of the ilk this thread is titled. It has been interesting reading how better players are viewed when randomly paired up.



    I have played with a couple tour pros (not big name guys at all). I've played with a ton of really good players. The only time I've really been impressed was last summer. I went out late on a Saturday afternoon to get a quick round in. 2 guys were warming up and both had some ability so I asked if they wanted to pair up.



    I carry driver right at 270 (I'm 5'8 175). The better of the 2 players was about 6'3 and was by me by 40 yards on every drive. Through 15 holes he was -6 including a bogey on a par 5. He was driver and flip wedge into every par 4. Driver-iron into 3 of the 4 par 5s. He hit 70-100 yard wedges inside 15 feet every time (most of them inside 10 feet) and made every putt.



    It was impressive. I think I was 2 over through 15.

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