Mickelson should decline Ryder Cup spot
U.S. Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk has put himself in the biggest pickle of his career. As much as I don’t agree with the Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson picks, at least Woods sells tickets; Mickelson, not so much (“Mickelson, Woods win another Ryder shot,” Sept. 5).
By picking Mickelson, Furyk screwed up royally. Mickelson won once this season, but other than that, his stats are not as good as those of Xander Schauffele or Tony Finau. Schauffele and Finau are holding the hottest clubs in golf, and by picking Mickelson, Furyk will have to settle with just one of them.
On the other hand, if Mickelson were a real team player, he would make Furyk’s job easier by stepping aside and allowing Furyk to pick Schauffele and Finau.
Europe picked the wrong Spaniard
The Europeans have a player who, this time around, probably should be a caddie for his Spanish countryman Rafael Cabrera Bello. I see no justification to put a club in Sergio Garcia's hands at the Ryder Cup (“Bjorn adds Ryder royalty to Team Europe,” Sept. 6).
The criticism of U.S. captain Jim Furyk is justified in his selection of Phil Mickelson (“Mickelson, Woods win another Ryder shot,” Sept. 5). Yes, Mickelson won a tournament months ago, at the WGC Mexico Championship on March 4. What since then?
As for Tiger Woods, he earned enough Ryder Cup points in one season to get into the top 12, and his current form certainly indicates a player who is ready for the matches.
No one could reasonably argue against Xander Schauffele taking Mickelson’s place. That move would have allowed Furyk to include Tony Finau.
St. Augustine, Fla.
Furyk needs no ‘cover’ for Mickelson pick
A reader recently suggested that U.S. captain Jim Furyk would be wise to select Xander Schauffele to provide “cover” for Furyk’s apparently unwise decision selecting Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson for the Ryder Cup team (“From the Morning Read inbox,” Sept. 7). There follows a disparagement of their season so far and adds a dig against Tony Finau, the apparent final captain’s pick, according to the pundits. But, according to the writer, Schauffele is the 12th player on the points list and so deserves the spot. And besides, he’s so much better than Finau.
I don't think the Woods selection requires any cover. Look at what the “has-been” has done this year, even if you dismiss, as the writer does, his runner-up in the PGA. And Mickelson? While his season has not been stellar, he has been known as a huge plus for the team morale and focus for many cups and has been playing better late in the season.
Furyk and his counterpart, Europe’s Thomas Bjorn, value experience, leadership and an ability to keep everyone loose and focused. Neither captain wants to lose and would run over his grandmother to avoid it. No cover required.
St. Paul, Minn.
Credit Mickelson for taking a stand after ’14 loss
I have to take exception with one of your respondents about the 2014 Ryder Cup and Phil Mickelson's comments aimed at U.S. captain Tom Watson after the Americans’ loss (“From the Morning Read inbox,” Sept. 7).
Watson was old-school, which is an It’s my way or the highway type of mentality. That doesn't cut it with all of the younger players. They want to be included in decisions and be heard.
Watson reportedly told Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed that if they did well in the Friday morning four-balls, they would play in the afternoon. They won, and he sat them down.
Bad decision, and a back track on what he said earlier. I lost all respect for Watson for the way he acted and a lot of the things he said. He was totally out of touch with the players, and certainly didn't foster any good vibes for the players.
What was said by Mickelson needed saying, and he was the only one willing to step up. The rest of the team on the podium looked like deer caught in the headlights.
The selections of Woods and Mickelson, I hope, are their swan songs and we get more younger players on the team. We need to build a base forward for the next 10 years and keep adding a few younger players each year to gain experience. Best of luck to the team. My personal pick is Tony Finau.
Hey, Dan, watch your terminology
Overall, I like listening to NBC’s Dan Hicks, but someone please tell him never to use the term “golfing the ball” again. The phrase is “playing golf,” “hitting the ball,” “striking the ball,” “nice stroke,” etc.
Bosque Farms, N.M.
‘Meaningless’ FedEx Cup playoffs
While watching the FedEx Cup playoffs, I can’t help but think about how meaningless these tournaments really are. The money is greater, and they turn these classic courses into birdie-fests for the well-healed pros.
Winning, by the way, doesn’t guarantee a return invite, as Xander Schauffele has pointed out. I would at least like to see a bit tougher setup for these guys, with tighter fairways and firmer greens. Stop coddling these guys and make them play some tough golf.
When Tiger Woods is hitting most of the fairways, you know they are too wide.
Anthony S. Polakov
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