Thursday, August 11, 2005
The 87th PGA Championship
Today marks the first day of play at the final of this year's major PGA tournaments, the 87th PGA Championship. This year, the pros will tee it up at Baltusrol, the nearly 7400 yard course in New Jersey that last hosted a major in 1993 (which resulted in an epic U.S. Open duel between winner Lee Janzen and runner-up Payne Stewart). It's hard to fathom a course this long being par 70, but that is the case at Baltusrol. In fact, there are only two par fives on the course, and those are the 650 yard 17th and the 554 yard 18th (pictured above). John Daly reached the 17th in two in 1993, but course redesigns may make that feat impossible this time around.
As I have posted prior to the other majors, I cheer against Tiger Woods, mostly because of the way he acts on the course. However, this course sets up for Tiger much in the way that St. Andrews does. I just can't see anyone else winning this weekend. Tiger would have to hit several wayward drives and have someone get hot with the putter. I will pull for Vijay, Lefty, and Retief, but I will be shocked if anyone can stand up to Tiger at Baltusrol, where long drives are such a tremendous advantage.