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Chamblee: Every player should leave flagstick in


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The last point you have crossed out above--the flagstick offers an aid - it gives the player yet another point or two at which to aim--would be my #1 motivating factor in doing this. I find that on the practice putting green my make % is significantly higher on shorter putts when I'm too lazy to take the flag out, and I attribute that largely to having a better more precise aiming point. That said I have no intention of being the annoying guy in the group who always asks for the flag to be put back in, but if the group I was playing in wanted to leave it in all the time I'm more than OK with that.

 

Interesting point.

 

So you're really willing to play worse to avoid a perceived annoyance? Dang, dude.

 

The default for a pin is in... I'd say those who want it out are being annoying :D

 

Come on ! Tune going to change when the pin spits one out.

 

 

Nah, if it hits the pin and doesn't go in, odds are fairly certain it wasn't going in anyway. We've covered this before in the other thread in November.

 

The main exception being if the pin is oddly angled toward me or to one side. In those freak instances, reset the pin or pull it out.

 

That’s what I’m saying. 40 mph wind blowing the pin around. Bryson still leaving it in. One eventually will get spat out. And I haven’t seen the pin help him hole one yet.

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If leaving the flag stick in really catches on, the condition of the edges of the hole should be a lot better. Sometimes I think people try to toss the damn thing back in from the fringe with the amount of gashes and dents I repair while pulling my ball out.

That could be true Doc, the other reason for the gashes I think is those who have to use their putter to retrieve their ball from back out of the hole, and don't do it cleanly. With some guys it just looks like they're cutting into an apple pie with a big dremel tool or something...

 

Personally thought the opposite. More hands squeezing by the pin to get a ball out has to damage the lip more. Or maybe just a wash. But certainly isn’t going to keep it cleaner. Hand in is guaranteed contact with lip. Pin out can be done with no contact although I’ll admit a lot are careless.

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All this being said. When do you guys think the rules will allow for sale of mulligans at the pro shop ?

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All this being said. When do you guys think the rules will allow for sale of mulligans at the pro shop ?

 

Every June during our annual Chamber outing, lol!

 

I'll repeat what I would be talking about on my show Morning Gripe:

 

The rule was changed to speed up play with no consideration for making the game easier and won't speed up play in any significant way and could go the other way in some circumstances, and the rule change makes the game easier. Pros don't need putting to be easier in general and I don't think really good putters will be that much better and really so-so putters could get a bit better and that isn't necessary for the game.

 

Game doesn't need to be dumbed down.

 

Change the rule back.

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If leaving the flag stick in really catches on, the condition of the edges of the hole should be a lot better. Sometimes I think people try to toss the damn thing back in from the fringe with the amount of gashes and dents I repair while pulling my ball out.

That could be true Doc, the other reason for the gashes I think is those who have to use their putter to retrieve their ball from back out of the hole, and don't do it cleanly. With some guys it just looks like they're cutting into an apple pie with a big dremel tool or something...

 

Personally thought the opposite. More hands squeezing by the pin to get a ball out has to damage the lip more. Or maybe just a wash. But certainly isn't going to keep it cleaner. Hand in is guaranteed contact with lip. Pin out can be done with no contact although I'll admit a lot are careless.

 

FACT - and at my course we are lucky if they change the pins twice a week (no kidding).

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If leaving the flag stick in really catches on, the condition of the edges of the hole should be a lot better. Sometimes I think people try to toss the damn thing back in from the fringe with the amount of gashes and dents I repair while pulling my ball out.

That could be true Doc, the other reason for the gashes I think is those who have to use their putter to retrieve their ball from back out of the hole, and don't do it cleanly. With some guys it just looks like they're cutting into an apple pie with a big dremel tool or something...

 

Personally thought the opposite. More hands squeezing by the pin to get a ball out has to damage the lip more. Or maybe just a wash. But certainly isn't going to keep it cleaner. Hand in is guaranteed contact with lip. Pin out can be done with no contact although I'll admit a lot are careless.

 

FACT - and at my course we are lucky if they change the pins twice a week (no kidding).

 

Exactly.

 

This time of year it’s once a week. When they cut. Possibly twice if the suns out more than 3 days in a row.

 

 

Gauranteed the yocals will destroy the lips with hands over a full weeks play.

 

Now I’ve worked and played at plenty of higher end places that changed cups every morning as a religion. But that’s not reality for the majority of courses in the world.

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If leaving the flag stick in really catches on, the condition of the edges of the hole should be a lot better. Sometimes I think people try to toss the damn thing back in from the fringe with the amount of gashes and dents I repair while pulling my ball out.

That could be true Doc, the other reason for the gashes I think is those who have to use their putter to retrieve their ball from back out of the hole, and don't do it cleanly. With some guys it just looks like they're cutting into an apple pie with a big dremel tool or something...

 

Personally thought the opposite. More hands squeezing by the pin to get a ball out has to damage the lip more. Or maybe just a wash. But certainly isn’t going to keep it cleaner. Hand in is guaranteed contact with lip. Pin out can be done with no contact although I’ll admit a lot are careless.

 

As someone who plays ~ 75 rounds solo and most of those with the pin in, I can attest that the edges of the cup are safe. Now if one has big fat hands and goes in haphazardly to take out the ball, then yeah, I suppose some damage could be done. But not one time has damage been done to a hole due the flag being in while taking the ball out of the cup. Been doing it now for several years. Surely you and everyone you've played with have chipped in with the flag in and went to retrieve the ball! I do it.the same whether it's a chip or a putt. I will say it's easier palm forward as the shape of ones hand will fit the hole better vs. backhand, but both ways will work!

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I find many flags are not installed straight which will not help but hurt you. On the PGA tour the flags are probably straight. Private and semiprivate courses might one that is not. On municipal courses you might find several flags that are not straight. So, it will depend on where I am playing. On the off season the guys I play with count a ball that hits the flag stick as holed out.

 

Think I might continue to take the flag out until I see some real stats.

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Forget your research. Forget your "anecdotal evidence". Here's what is going to happen. The PGA Tour players are going to figure out over the next few months what works best for them, putting with the flagstick in or out. If the overwhelming majority decide on in, and I think they will, it will be a trend that quickly filters down to the everyday golfer.

 

Personally I agree with the comments of Brandel Chamblee and Mark Rolfing on the Golf Channel. It looks odd and makes the game easier. Maybe we'll get used to it, but I hope the USGA and R&A revisit their decision on this rule change.

 

Make the game faster? Maybe, but here's a possible scenario. Player A is first to putt and wants the flagstick out. He has it removed. Player B is next and he wants the flag in. It has to be retrieved and replaced in the hole. Player C steps up and wants it out. And who knows what player D will want. Do you want to be waiting back in the fairway watching that dance going on?

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If leaving the flag stick in really catches on, the condition of the edges of the hole should be a lot better. Sometimes I think people try to toss the damn thing back in from the fringe with the amount of gashes and dents I repair while pulling my ball out.

That could be true Doc, the other reason for the gashes I think is those who have to use their putter to retrieve their ball from back out of the hole, and don't do it cleanly. With some guys it just looks like they're cutting into an apple pie with a big dremel tool or something...

 

Personally thought the opposite. More hands squeezing by the pin to get a ball out has to damage the lip more. Or maybe just a wash. But certainly isn’t going to keep it cleaner. Hand in is guaranteed contact with lip. Pin out can be done with no contact although I’ll admit a lot are careless.

 

As someone who plays ~ 75 rounds solo and most of those with the pin in, I can attest that the edges of the cup are safe. Now if one has big fat hands and goes in haphazardly to take out the ball, then yeah, I suppose some damage could be done. But not one time has damage been done to a hole due the flag being in while taking the ball out of the cup. Been doing it now for several years. Surely you and everyone you've played with have chipped in with the flag in and went to retrieve the ball! I do it.the same whether it's a chip or a putt. I will say it's easier palm forward as the shape of ones hand will fit the hole better vs. backhand, but both ways will work!

 

I pull the pin to get the ball out. Have cadet xl glove size. Maybe I’m just not able to see it because of that ?

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I plan on leaving it in. We've already plan a number of rounds with it in and it does seem to speed things up and seems to help a little with making a few extra short putts. the only thing that is difficult is that people keep forgetting, but that seems to end quickly. As with many things on Golfwrx, some of us seem to make a bigger deal of things than it deserves.

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Don't think it will have any effect on pace of play...

 

Pace of play is an issue of ...

 

1. Enforcement

2. Courses too Challenging

3. Lack of Training/Education of Keeping Pace of Play

 

Stop making sense!

 

If leaving the flag stick in really catches on, the condition of the edges of the hole should be a lot better. Sometimes I think people try to toss the damn thing back in from the fringe with the amount of gashes and dents I repair while pulling my ball out.

That could be true Doc, the other reason for the gashes I think is those who have to use their putter to retrieve their ball from back out of the hole, and don't do it cleanly. With some guys it just looks like they're cutting into an apple pie with a big dremel tool or something...

 

Personally thought the opposite. More hands squeezing by the pin to get a ball out has to damage the lip more. Or maybe just a wash. But certainly isn't going to keep it cleaner. Hand in is guaranteed contact with lip. Pin out can be done with no contact although I'll admit a lot are careless.

 

As someone who plays ~ 75 rounds solo and most of those with the pin in, I can attest that the edges of the cup are safe. Now if one has big fat hands and goes in haphazardly to take out the ball, then yeah, I suppose some damage could be done. But not one time has damage been done to a hole due the flag being in while taking the ball out of the cup. Been doing it now for several years. Surely you and everyone you've played with have chipped in with the flag in and went to retrieve the ball! I do it.the same whether it's a chip or a putt. I will say it's easier palm forward as the shape of ones hand will fit the hole better vs. backhand, but both ways will work!

 

You are not the average yokel who won't care.

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the average yokel never even holes out. He leaves his eight footer two feet short, picks up and goes to the next tee.

 

If the leave the flag in method becomes standard among the public, I imagine we could see the hole and flag become one piece at many courses and you won't have the option to take the flag out at all.

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Sorry if this has been addressed already but are all flagsticks standard size and regulated by the rules of golf? I think I've seen thick flagsticks in windy areas.

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Sorry if this has been addressed already but are all flagsticks standard size and regulated by the rules of golf? I think I've seen thick flagsticks in windy areas.

Yes. They have to be cylindrical, no more than 0.75 inches diameter below 3" above the green surface, and can't have anything do dampen an impact. Go to the Equipment Rules on the USGA website.

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I'm imagining BD's reaction the first time the pin knocks the ball out��

 

I know what my reaction will be, unabated joy.

 

Not a BAD hater, but the rule was meant to speed up play for amateurs and some pro's will undoubtably use it to their advantage. We're creeping closer to a time when a few rules must be different between the PGA and amateur golf.

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I'm imagining BD's reaction the first time the pin knocks the ball out��

 

I know what my reaction will be, unabated joy.

 

Not a BAD hater, but the rule was meant to speed up play for amateurs and some pro's will undoubtably use it to their advantage. We're creeping closer to a time when a few rules must be different between the PGA and amateur golf.

 

There has always been a case for bifurcation, but leaving the pin in when playing from the green is not one of them. No need to overreact. IMO, opposition to it is about the optics of it. It does not look good. Other.than that it's a big fat non factor, but sure.fun to talk about!

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I’m going to give it a shot and start leaving it in. My reason behind it is that I always putt great on the putting green, and I’m telling myself it’s because there is a pin in the hole. We’ll see.

 

*I won’t do it if it effects the speed of play, ie if the pin is already out when it’s my turn to putt.

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I have only one comment on the flag in thing:

 

I agree with DeChambeau 100% on the "heavy stick" thing. I have seen so, so many balls over the years that would have easily gone in be knocked out by the heavy sticks. The flimsy fiberglass(?) ones are perfect. No worries. They "absorb" the impact of the ball. But the heavy ones that they use on some courses that get very high winds? Not so much.

 

I flat out do not believe Pelz's research on this at all. Far too much anecdotal evidence for me and I bet I could design an experiment that would prove my hypothesis. I'm not going to, of course, I'm just not going to leave the heavy sticks in. LOL

 

As an analogy, my buddy and I used to play basketball in the street on one of those "roll out" basket/rim things. Over the years, the backboard got looser and looser until it was just this amazingly receptive "thing" that you could toss the ball up to and make shots. It was nothing like a real backboard, and made shots around the rim so, so easy.

 

The pin thing is like that.

 

Science. LOL

 

I agree with you on the "heavy stick" but I'm curious... are you talking about the Pelz research I linked above? If so, what issues do you take with it? I linked to the methodology. The testing was done with thousands of shots with numerous variables. I would think thousands of trials would not be deemed anecdotal... even if not statistically significant or peer-reviewed.

 

Somebody told me he did his tests with both types of flags? Or did subsequent tests with them? If he did, and came to the conclusion that you should still leave the flag in with the heavy flags, then he's wrong. LOL ;-)

 

I can't confirm the flagsticks he used, but I would be highly doubtful he came to his conclusions using the wide metal ones. Anyone have him on speed dial?

 

This is an important point! A thick metal flagstick cost me my best-ever chance at a HI1. A nice iron shot that landed about 12 feet short of the hole, rolling nicely at the pin -- and then clang! Caromed 4 feet to the left. Bethpage Black was the place, and anyone who's played it knows what those iron javelins are like. If it was a thin fiberglass job, I'd have gotten a free dinner and much personal satisfaction.

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With as goofy as something like putting can be for both pros and ams alike, couldn’t the argument be made that if you truly believe it will help you make more putts, that leaving the stick in or taking it out will help you make more putts just from a confidence standpoint?

 

I understand the science and all that between the arguments on both sides, it seems like that margin is so thin on how much scientifically that it can help or hinder a putt, that it is easily outweighed by putting a confident stroke on the ball thinking you have an edge one way or the other.

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If leaving the flag stick in really catches on, the condition of the edges of the hole should be a lot better. Sometimes I think people try to toss the damn thing back in from the fringe with the amount of gashes and dents I repair while pulling my ball out.

That could be true Doc, the other reason for the gashes I think is those who have to use their putter to retrieve their ball from back out of the hole, and don't do it cleanly. With some guys it just looks like they're cutting into an apple pie with a big dremel tool or something...

 

Personally thought the opposite. More hands squeezing by the pin to get a ball out has to damage the lip more. Or maybe just a wash. But certainly isn’t going to keep it cleaner. Hand in is guaranteed contact with lip. Pin out can be done with no contact although I’ll admit a lot are careless.

 

It’s been my experience that people don’t pay attention to what they are doing and hit the side of the cup with the flagstick when putting it in. That’s what causes the damage up here. Maybe it’s different down your way on Bermuda.

 

Never really thought about all the sausage link digit folks having to widdle their ball up past the flagstick now. That will definitely be an issue. I never remove the flag when I play alone, and I often have a hell of a time getting my ball out of the hole (especially on windy days), and I have skinny fingers.

 

Don’t even want to think about people using their putters to get the ball out. That’s almost as bad as climbing in and out of bunkers on the steep front face.

 

My guess is a lot of people will try to launch their ball out of the hole by jerking the flag stick out at warp speed. That will surely cause all sorts of damage to the edge of the hole. People just don’t have any respect for the courses they play anymore. Not sure if they don’t know any better, or if they do and they just don’t care.

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Will only speed up play if those playing are aware and intent on speeding up. Otherwise it won't make a bit of difference. Lots of ways to be slow...

 

In terms of helping/hurting I think it's too close to tell and wont make a bit of difference to most. We've had the option forever on chips/pitches with no discernable advantage truly determinable to either option.

 

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First round today with the new rules. We played with the flag IN on pretty much all first putts outside 30 feet. It absolutely sped play up. By how much, I don't know. But there were at least 6 or 7 times during our round where I was the first to reach a green, no one was there yet to take the flag, and I putted. It was pretty great, actually. Then, when we were all closer to the hole, we took it out.

 

There was even one time when I a guy had a fast downhill putt and he requested that we putt it in. No problem. We did so.

 

Overall, though, DEFINITELY a time saver for our group today.

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To me, it depends a lot on how the flag is leaning because they never sit perfectly plumb.

 

I think on downhill putts, the flag should be used and not be used for uphill putts. My reasoning is gravity. Generally if the hole is on a slope, the flag will be leaning towards the uphill putts making the hole smaller. Whereas the flag will be leaning away from downhill putts making the hole bigger and aiding in stopping the ball.

 

Also when there is a stiff wind blowing, the flag will lean. So putting into the wind the flag will be making the hole smaller. Whereas on downwind putts, the flag will be leaning away from the player will make the hole bigger, and also can aid in helping stop the ball. I was surprised to see Chambeau using the flag when the wind was blowing hard and clearing leaning the flag towards him when putting at the Sentry. To me, it clearly looked like the flag made the hole smaller.

 

If the putt is downhill into the wind or uphill downwind, it will depend on how severe the slope and how it will be leaning.

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Sorry if this has been addressed already but are all flagsticks standard size and regulated by the rules of golf? I think I've seen thick flagsticks in windy areas.

 

There are regulations, but you will definitely see different thicknesses and materials. My crappy muni course uses cheap, thin fiberglass sticks while our sister course uses thicker, metal sticks. I've seen wooden ones used at older courses.

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This rule is confusing, time wasting and awkward.

 

Awkward (because it's new) CHECK

 

Confusing? Not to me. Why is it confusing to you?

 

Time wasting? Definitely not at all in my group's first run through. Saved us time, in fact.

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