Tiger Doesn't Roar - Tiger Woods finally won his first tournament since 2009 and then nearly everyone picked him to win the Masters. But the Arnold Palmer Invitational isn't the Masters.
Last Friday when Woods shot a 3-over-par 75 to put him eight shots out of the lead and tied for 40th place after 36 holes, you could almost hear the pain in the voice of broadcaster Jim Nantz.
And perhaps there was a tear?
It appears Woods is a perfect case of paralysis by analysis. He's worrying about so many things such as swing angles and getting past parallel and takeaway and ''getting stuck'' and who knows what else that's he's forgetting to simply play golf. Most of all, he's forgetting to have fun. But I don't think he ever has had fun on the golf course.
I can recall during my early years of playing golf, a friend of mine was huge fan of Ben Hogan and he tried to do everything ''the Hogan way.'' During one of our rounds, my friend was having problems on the early holes and started talking about what Hogan would be doing. I finally suggested that why didn't he just hit the shots his own way without thinking about Hogan and suddenly his play improved.
Speaking of Hogan, it was Hogan who said he probably hit only one shot per round the way he wanted to. Maybe Woods should hear that. Woods wants every shot to be perfect.
Just remember, one of Dr. Bob Rotella's most popular books was titled ''Golf Is Not A Game of Perfect.''
If you are trying to be perfect all the time, you can't have fun. In contrast, the winner of the Masters was someone who is always having fun, Bubba Watson. And it should be noted that Watson has never had a golf lesson.
Another example of not taking the game too seriously is Hunter Mahan. He lost The Players Championship last year in the richest playoff in history when Bill Haas hit an amazing shot out of the water. That meant Haas, not Mahan, picked up the FedEx Cup's $10 million bonus.
When he was interviewed after the loss by NBC's Roger Maltbie, Mahan was smiling. When they were finished and still on camera, Maltbie said, "Condolences.''
Mahan replied, "Condolences?! I didn't die!"
No he didn't. He just lost a golf tournament. And he still got $1,564,000 for second place!
On the LPGA Tour, Yani Tseng has been dominant again this year with three wins in the first five events to give her 15 victories, including five majors, at the age of 23. One of the keys to her success might be something Nancy Lopez recently said on television. Lopez said that Tseng is ''playing happy.''
- - -
Strange Combinations - The low amateur at the Masters was Patrick Cantlay, a sophomore from UCLA. What is unusual is that Cantlay's parents are graduates of rival USC.
Here's another matchup of rivalries.
Also at the Masters was Jason Dufner, who's name catapulted into the limelight when he was the leader heading in the final round of the PGA Championship last year and then lost in a playoff. Dufner played golf at Auburn and his fiancee is a graduate of rival Alabama.
- - -
Underpaid - Louise Suggs, one of the founders of the LPGA who finished as her career fifth in victories with 58, was recently interviewed in Golf World and made an interesting observation:
''I won 58 tournament and 11 majors. When Annika (Sorenstam) had won 58 tournaments and seven majors, she had won $16 million. My total was less than $200,000. If that wouldn't make you throw up, I don't know what would.''
- - -
Old-Time Baseball - When Oakland and Seattle opened their seasons in Japan, Mariners' fans saw the games televised like in the days when games were being recreated on the radio.
The Seattle television crew determined it would be too expensive to send announcers and staff to Japan to broadcast the games. How much more expensive? According to an Associated Press story, more than 2 times the cost to broadcast a road game in the United States.
Instead, the Seattle announcers, Dave Sims and Mike Blowers, watched the Japanese broadcast feed on large flat-screen TVs in a Seattle studio to broadcast the game.
At least that was a bit more up-to-date than when games were recreated on radio by reading the play-by-play by telegraph ticker tape. And Sims and Blowers didn't have to recreate the crack of the bat and other sounds of the game.
Speaking of Blowers, he was a member of the 1986 Jamestown Expos after being drafted in the 10th-round by the Montreal Expos. He made his major-league debut with the New York Yankees in 1989 and then went on to play for Seattle, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Oakland. He also had an association with Japan since he also played in Japan for the Hanshin Tigers.
- - -
Top Seniors Will Play Nearby - The Senior Players Championship will be held at Fox Chapel Golf Club in Pittsburgh June 28 through July 1.
Fred Couples is the defending champion after he won on the third playoff hole over John Cook in 2011 for his first major victory on the Champions Tour.
The co-chair of the event is Tom Reading, a 1981 graduate of Jamestown High School where he played on the golf team from 1978-81 and was captain his last two years. He went on to play golf at the College of Wooster in Ohio and graduated in 1985. Reading was also the club champion at Moon Brook Country Club in 1982 and 1985.