From The Inbox

To dial back distance, reduce size of clubheads

With a smaller margin for error, players would have to gear down and focus on the sweet spot, reader contends

After reading Gary Van Sickle’s article on driving distance, I am left with this thought: We are not going to change the balls or the shafts (“There’s no turning back on driving distance,” Aug. 20). That leaves the size of the clubheads, thus reducing the moment of inertia, or MOI, of the clubs.

Reduce drivers back to 350cc, and similar reductions for other “woods.” They can be hit as far as current clubs, but missing the sweet spot will result in a bad shot.

Players would have to throttle back on swing speed for more control. I remember this when we played with wooden clubs.

Kevin Ricciardelli
Millis, Mass.

A tough sell, indeed
Really, a terrific column by Gary Van Sickle regarding driving distance (“There’s no turning back on driving distance,” Aug. 20). He made all great points, and I agree with everything that he wrote.

I have been a sales rep in the golf business for 37 years, and I can promise you that a ball that flies shorter would not be a great seller.

John Blain
Hamilton, N.Y.
(Blain represents Sun Mountain Sports in upstate New York.)

Reader floats another ball option
Gary Van Sickle’s suggestion of a larger golf ball is close and was used in a version of the TopFlite called the Magna (“There’s no turning back on driving distance,” Aug. 20).

My suggestion: Just go lighter.

I have hit balls that float at courses that have a reservoir for the range, and the balls just float and get blown to a bank and are recovered. They are range balls, so any judgment is a little tough, but they are no worse than any other range ball I have hit.

The move to the larger ball, just like the floater, won't work for two reasons. One is that the change occurred outside the U.S. only as we already played the larger ball, and two is lawyers. So, actually one reason: the U.S. legal system.

As an older golfer, I am well aware of the old balata balls. Going to a shorter ball really shouldn't hurt amateurs, as most of us have a shorter tee available. Just move up one set of markers.

George Delaney
Olympia, Wash.

These guys are not so good
The PGA Tour’s laying off 50 people for financial reasons was a lot of show, but that's about all it was (“PGA Tour takes painful but prudent course,” Aug. 13). The amount of money saved was a drop in the bucket for the PGA Tour and shows that it cares little for its people.

The little mom-and-pop businesses have tried everything to keep their employees working, as they value them very much. The Tour says get out so that we can save a penny or two.

Michael Merrill
McKinney, Texas

Buck stops here
CBS announcer Jim Nantz is the best. I don’t know why people wouldn’t like his golf coverage (“From the Morning Read inbox,” Aug. 20).

If you ever wanted to turn off the volume watching golf on TV, that would be due to having to listen to Joe Buck. I’m so glad that the USGA ended its contract with Fox early and gave the television rights to NBC.

Gregg Fisher
Morgan Hill, Calif.

Morning Read invites reader comment. Write to editor Steve Harmon at Please provide your name and city of residence. If your comment is selected for publication, Morning Read will contact you to verify the authenticity of the email and confirm your identity. We will not publish your email address. We reserve the right to edit for clarity and brevity.

Sign up to receive the Morning Read newsletter, along with Where To Golf Next and The Equipment Insider.