Keeping Score

From the Morning Read inbox

Big-picture view for National Golf Day

The last thing that golf needs is a standard golf ball (“From the Morning Read inbox,” April 23).

Individuality is very important to golf. Whether it be playing with a TaylorMade driver or having a Scotty Cameron putter cover, the individual golfer can show his or her personality in a variety of ways. Quarterbacks have different footballs. Golfers should have different golf balls. Golf is trying to be more inclusive, not exclusive.  

When it comes to the golf ball, the golfer must be allowed to find the one that works best for him or her. I choose the ball I play based on how it performs on the putting green. Others decide their preference based on flight, length and other factors. 

The major professional tours are the best source to market and test these golf balls. People will purchase what the tour player plays. Why would a sport that is struggling to grow want to limit the impact it has on current and future customers? It is criticized all the time for being slow, time consuming and expensive. I don’t think adding the term “limiting” would help. 

National Golf Day is Wednesday. All golfers should be encouraging those who used to play to return to the game while, at the same time, continue to play and help to do their part to make the sport as enjoyable as it can be. Let’s keep the big picture in mind this week. 

Mark Anderson
Alexandria, Va.

(Anderson is a PGA of America member.)


Let’s hear it for low scores

When I first played golf 50 years ago, 6,300 yards probably was a standard distance for men who were not professionals. Now that same distance is pretty short, and I like it that way.

Low scores are more fun than high scores any day.

Jim Kavanagh
St. Augustine, Fla.


It’s no concern of mine

Regarding Tim Finchem's salary (“PGA Tour chief merits his millions,” April 19), what do I care? I’m not paying it.

Joe Matula
Palos Park, Ill.


PGA Tour, NCAA win as businesses

If the reader thinks that the PGA Tour’s not-for-profit exemption from paying income tax status is a scam, check out the IRS Form 990 for the NCAA. How does an organization accumulate almost $750 million in cash and investments and be “not for profit”?

But does making these organizations subject to paying income tax benefit the consumer or is the tax cost passed on down in the form of higher prices and fees? Let's face it: It doesn't matter what tax-code section these organizations hide behind and what they do for charities. They are businesses. Successful businesses make money, and those who are responsible for that success reap the benefits.

Charlie Jurgonis
Fairfax, Va.


Memories of golf in Scotland

I loved your article on the fun of playing in Scotland (“Golf in Scotland restores game’s fun factor,” April 23).

I had the opportunity to play a dozen rounds there years ago and have the same fond memories, for many of the same reasons. I’m envious of your anticipation to return.   

Warren Lehr
Owasso, Okla.


Leave it to the Scots to show the way

I just read your article about Lundin Links and thoroughly enjoyed it.  

You depicted golf in Scotland perfectly. The game is fun, and when played by people who get on with it, even a four-ball – especially match play – should take about 3½ hours.

The game should not be a race, but we all agree that five- and 5½ hour rounds are a bit of a pain and totally not necessary.

Peter Craigon
Kinross, Scotland

(Craigon is a co-director of Morton Golf Holidays.)


Uniform ball on Tour is not the answer

Is the reader joking (“From the Morning Read inbox,” April 23), or is he actually suggesting that the PGA Tour name one official ball? I'm sure that all of the other ball manufacturers would love that move.

Why stop there, though? The PGA Tour could name not only an official equipment brand but also an official brand model. That certainly would cut down on equipment choices, and companies. I'm betting that it wouldn’t make any of it any cheaper, though.

There are many answers to the driving-distance problem and outdated courses, but this isn't one of them. 

I still say the simplest answer is to narrow the fairways, grow the rough, add instead of remove trees, deepen and increase the number of fairway bunkers and ignore the whining that will follow.

Tour players are some of the whiniest golfers anywhere when forced to play on what for many of us are typical course conditions. Simply force them to play on courses not set up for bomb and gouge. 

Timothy R. Vice
Margate, Fla.


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