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 RJ_MJ_JJ ·  
RJ_MJ_JJRJ_MJ_JJ  84Members Posts: 84
Joined:  in Rules of Golf and Etiquette #1

I would love to see what fellow WRXers think about keeping the pin in vs taking it out.
Personally, it makes intuitive sense that it should be easier to make a putt in a hole with NOTHING in it, vs having something in that hole. And I'm not good enough to hit the center of the hole (pin) to slow the ball down vs popping the ball out of the hole. Call me "old school" for wanting to take the pin out...
I also think it makes things more awkward and could slow the game down if someone in your group wants the pin in, but someone else wants it out; that's counterproductive to what the USGA/R&A intended. It has certainly slowed down some rounds in my experience.
For lag putting, I totally dig leaving the pin in. Tending the flag always seemed unnecessary. I'm not going to make that 60-footer...just leave it. But any putt that's makeable, TAKE THE PIN OUT, please.
I'd love to hear your thoughts!


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  • Lefty96Lefty96  243Members Posts: 243
    Joined:  #2

    While this has been talked about a million times since the change, Ill give you my reasons for why I like it in.

    On long putts I honestly don’t care. I’m not going to make it, or hit the stick for that matter. Where I care about it being in is on putts I’m trying to make. I think it’s sort of an “aim small miss small” kind of thing. I focus on rolling the putt right into that stick. I make more putts inside 15 feet with the pin in. I just am able to focus on that small target and make a better stroke.

    However, if someone in my group wants it pulled, I leave it out. I don’t play for big money and I still remember how to putt with it out. I prefer it in and I make more putts with it in, but I hate slow play. Doing the pin in and out dance for 18 holes is not my idea of fun.

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  • om18vom18v  256Members Posts: 256
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  • Qqq123xxQqq123xx I wake up take a few steps and am in a haze the rest of the day.  6463Members Posts: 6,463
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    I like it from distance. Shorter putts not so much.

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  • jimb6golfjimb6golf  1663Members Posts: 1,663
    Joined:  #5

    Honestly I never cared either way, but in the past would always take the flag out except when playing alone when I would leave it in. In my weekend group we now leave it in and it feels like we're saving some time on the greens overall. You just putt and leave. I feel it has hurt a few putts where the ball glances off the flagstick but overall it's been a good thing.

  • PepperturboPepperturbo Midwest and Southwest 16066Members Posts: 16,066
    Joined:  #6

    Now that the pin can be left in or pulled this topic is like anything else without a rule, subjective and boring.

    If a person is good at maintaining the pace of the ball, then pull the pin. Long lag or short putt, my ball seldom passes the pin by more than 3', plus I am comfortable pulling the pin before putting, as is the case with many of the better golfer friends. However, some friends that have trouble controlling the pace like keeping the pin in as it may help to keep the ball near the cup.

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  • NoTalentLeftyNoTalentLefty  3640Members Posts: 3,640
    Joined:  #7

    It stays in and I haven't even been able to play yet.

    Livin' proof that Lefties are not naturally talented.

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  • RJ_MJ_JJRJ_MJ_JJ  84Members Posts: 84
    Joined:  #8

    @Pepperturbo said:
    Now that the pin can be left in or pulled this topic is like anything else without a rule, subjective and boring.

    Haha - sorry to bore you.


    GHIN = ~4
    DRIVER: Cobra F7+ 8* w/ HZRDUS Black 6.5-75g - tipped
    HYBRID: Taylormade RBZ 18* stock X shaft
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    PUTTER: Ping Sigma G KUSHIN w/ lots of lead tape
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    GRIPS: Winn Dri Tac - MIDSIZE

  • kmay__kmay__ niagara, ontario, canada.  391Members Posts: 391
    Joined:  #9

    In from anything more than 20 feet and out when closer, but its not set in stone. I just prefer when I'm close, to be looking at the open hole. And I got burned on a real nice par putt by a shtty leaning flagstick which pssed me off lol.

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  • ShakesterShakester  555Members Posts: 555
    Joined:  #10

    Any putt that is long enough to be "attended", I just leave in. The percentage of making those putts are low and my goal is to usually lag it close. Anything I feel I can make, I take it out.

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  • Loomis13Loomis13  203Members Posts: 203
    Joined:  #11

    I'm a weirdo on this topic. I'll leave it on long putts. Anything 15-5ish feet I'm taking it out. Anything under 5' I like it so I can hit into the stick. All this is assuming the flag is already the way I like it. I'm not gonna make someone put it in for me then take it out again.

  • cardoustiecardoustie haha, we don't play for 5's Tasmania to Canada 12893Members Posts: 12,893
    Joined:  #12

    Pretty much common sense and what others have said ....
    Everyone I play with has it in for putts outside 25 feet and out for shorter
    I'm the opposite of Loomis13, no chance I can putt with it in on short ones


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  • ClevelandKyleClevelandKyle  34Members Posts: 34
    Joined:  #13

    I prefer it in because I feel like it helps me measure my alignment better and I can see the location of the hole peripherally. Doesn't really mean much on a sloped putt, but i still prefer it in, regardless of distance unless its within a couple feet. However, I do make more putts with it out. I recently made a 45 footer this past weekend with the pin out. I kind of thought I putted short, and way too far to the right of the hole, turns out my slope read was perfect as it crept in after reaching the edge of the hole. Reminded me of that famous Tiger chip at the masters where the ball just hung at the edge for a few seconds before falling in. Proudest putt of my life.


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  • North ButteNorth Butte  11741Members Posts: 11,741
    Joined:  #14

    Are you saying that dead-weight 45-footer would have missed had the pin been in?

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  • jmtbkrjmtbkr Palm Beach Gardens 791Members Posts: 791
    Joined:  #15

    I take it out. Our greens are not flat and it interferes with my take on the break.
    I’ll put it back in if another player asks.

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  • trileriantrilerian  420Members Posts: 420
    Joined:  #16

    Generally I leave the pin in. The only time I take it out is when I am playing with people who want it out. But once it's out, it stays out until everyone is done putting. Then of course it is up to the last person putting to put the flag back in, so annoying...

  • dpb5031dpb5031 Jupiter, FL 5551Members Posts: 5,551
    Joined:  #17

    Pin IN only on putts that I'd previously have had tended. Out otherwise.

    I've witnessed way more putts that IMO the pin prevented from going in than I've seen it help.

    As far as an aiming point, (the aim small crowd)...most putts have break, so unless its string-straight, why would you be aiming at the stick anyway?

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  • andrueandrue  1377Members Posts: 1,377
    Joined:  edited Jul 11, 2019 9:32pm #18

    I don't care and just accept the flag wherever it happens to be. Minimum effort and since most people I play with feel the same way it tends to get left in and to speed up the round.

    Post edited by andrue on
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  • SNIPERBBBSNIPERBBB Hit Ball Hard SE Ohio 2959Members Posts: 2,959
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    I like it on long, lag putts as it helps a bit with depth perception. After that, I want it out it as it becomes a distraction and my home course flagsticks are not friendly for the ball staying in the hole.

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  • TMoakley1547TMoakley1547  171Members Posts: 171
    Joined:  #20

    I leave it in on the longer putts. I also leave it in on the short little 3 footers and tap ins. I had been leaving it in for everything, but a few weeks ago I got burned leaving it in on a 15 footer for par. Im sure the putt would have dropped had the flag been out, but it bounced off the stick and missed. So I typically will pull it on anything i feel i have a chance at making, unless its a real shorty.

  • b.mattayb.mattay New WRX'er  556Members Posts: 556
    Joined:  #21

    Absolutely 100% out. I tried testing putts with it in on a day when the course was quiet. Any putt that was going 2+ feet past the hole with our rubber coated thick wind pins would bounce out.

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  • wmblake2000wmblake2000 Los Angeles 5988Members Posts: 5,988
    Joined:  #22

    The only time it really seems to matter to me is if it's windy and the pin is oscillating, then I want it out. Otherwise, I am ok with whatever the others want to do and most of the time, it is left in.

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  • PepsiDuckPepsiDuck  1871Members Posts: 1,871
    Joined:  #23

    @b.mattay said:
    Absolutely 100% out. I tried testing putts with it in on a day when the course was quiet. Any putt that was going 2+ feet past the hole with our rubber coated thick wind pins would bounce out.

    I am also 100% out, no matter the distance. I also pull the pin for chips if I'm close enough. Even if everyone else is pin in, I will pull it myself and replace it if need be.

    I believe the original "science" was based on a flawed experimental design which doesn't correlate to how golf is actually played. And I've had significantly more anecdotal and empirical "evidence" of putts hitting the stick and bouncing off the pin and away from the hole than of putts running over or popping out of the hole without the pin.

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  • bladehunterbladehunter Today was a good day... south carolina 28634Members Posts: 28,634
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    Out inside 25ft.

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  • MountainGoatMountainGoat Mid-Maryland 2383Members Posts: 2,383
    Joined:  edited Jul 12, 2019 11:17am #25

    Just about everyone in my old guy league is leaving it in, myself included. I find that it help with targeting, and I've never had a putted ball rejected by a pin.

  • GirevikGirevik Thrifty Scott  862Members Posts: 862
    Joined:  #26

    I've read 3 or 4 articles about "studies" on the matter. All but one say leave it in. The one that says pull it was VERY emphatic that leaving it in hurts you. I think all the studies show that on balls that were going to miss one way or the other those that hit the pin result in shorter leaves, but the one article said that a ball is more likely to go in if it doesn't hit a pin.
    I don't know what to think and really don't care. I'll do along with whatever whoever I'm playing with wants.

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  • clutchfanclutchfan  349Members Posts: 349
    Joined:  #27

    Pull it if shadow is moving distracting or wind blowing flag/ pin around on shorter putts, otherwise happy to leave it in.

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  • RichieHuntRichieHunt  3850Members Posts: 3,850
    Joined:  #28

    I've been putting with the pin in. I did get screwed on 1 putt. IMO, there was no way that putt was not going in if the pin was out. But, I guess the pin was tilted just enough to knock it out.

    Having said that, my feeling is that the odds of that happening are extremely slim and I prefer to putt with the pin in because I can see the line better with the middle of the cup defined by the flagstick.


  • DaveGoodrichDaveGoodrich SoCal 1063Members Posts: 1,063
    Joined:  #29

    I believe that having it in helps in more cases than it hurts, and it speeds up play in more situations than it slows it down (there are going to be exceptions in both cases, of course).

    My experience suggests to me that putts that hit the pin and bounce out are almost always moving too fast to go in without the pin. I think the exception is a breaking putt that might just catch the low side. That putt can potentially be deflected out, even when the speed is good, because the the lip is lower, and the ball is already moving away from the center of the hole. However, over the long term, this is more than compensated for, statistically, by putts that are moving too fast and are slowed by the pin enough to drop, when they would have missed otherwise.

    In other words, the pin helps on most "too fast" putts, and doesn't hurt on "too slow" putts, because they don't get to the hole anyway. The visual advantages (improved depth perception, and better peripheral vision) seem obvious to me as well.

    So I generally leave it in unless it's moving in the wind, or leaning towards my intended point of entry into the hole. Most of the guys I play with leave it in all the time now, which really speeds up play. When somebody wants it out for shorter putts, the group usually just pulls it for everyone's "makeable" putts. This is usually no big deal, from a POP standpoint, because its only a few steps to the flag at that point anyway.

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  • Hawkeye77Hawkeye77 Countdown to The Masters! Iowa 18920ClubWRX Posts: 18,920
    Joined:  #30

    Or . . . . . https://forums.golfwrx.com/discussion/1729156/2019-and-the-pin-is-in#latest

    In fairness one of them has dropped to the second spot at the top of the list on the first page, lol.

    Over 600 thoughts in the threads running for some time, enjoy.

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  • chrisgilly09chrisgilly09  1562Members Posts: 1,562
    Joined:  #31

    In, on breaking putts it’s hitting the flagstick in the center of the hole and hopefully you speed is good enough for the ball to stay in. my contention is a ball could be going sideways enough to hit the lower lip or spin out a weird way if there is no flagstick, that extra 2” of travel could affect where the ball hits the cup maybe? Not a scientist


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