Golf Buzz

October 15, 2013 - 6:22am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Garmin S4
The S4 is the latest golf watch GPS offering as part of the Garmin Approach Series.

Garmin, a global leader in satellite navigation, announced today a new addition to its Approach Series golf watch with the S4.

The Approach S4 has a high-res touchscreen display that is sunlight readable and offers a dedicated Green View button. Its rechargeable lithium-ion battery can last for up to 10 hours in golf mode. The S4 comes preloaded with more than 30,000 international courses (Currently, there are no golf courses available in Asia for Approach S-series devices sold outside of Asia) with free lifetime course updates. That means no additional fees or subscriptions.

The Approach S4 also has Smart Notification technology when paired with a compatible Apple smartphone, allowing the watch to wirelessly receive information from the phone’s notification center such as emails and text messages, so golfers can leave their phones in their bags while on the course.

Here's a video with an in-depth look at the S4:



Like other Garmin Golf GPS devices, the S4 gives precise distances to the front, middle and back of the green, and incorporates layup, dogleg and shot distances all while keeping score and tracking statistics on the digital scorecard. While the Approach S4 is useful on the golf course, it's also stylish enough to serve as your everyday wristwatch.

"The Approach S4 is the natural evolution of wearable golf technology," said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of worldwide sales. "The hi-res touchscreen display makes it easier than ever for golfers to stay on top of their game, and the Smart Notification functionality allows them to stay connected while on the course. Plus, the extended battery life allows for a full weekend of golf on one charge. The Approach S4 will give golfers a competitive edge on the course, but the sleek form factor and smart watch technology makes it appropriate for everyday wear."

The Approach S4 will be available in Fall 2013, and will retail for $349.99. It will be available at specialty golf retailers and golf course pro shops. The Approach S4 is the latest addition to Garmin’s outdoor segment, which focuses on developing technologies and innovations to enhance users' outdoor experiences.

For more information about Garmin’s other outdoor products and services, go to and

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

October 14, 2013 - 11:45pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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Zach Johnson in math problem
Austin Adams via Twitter
Does Zach Johnson's 2007 Masters victory compute? Use the Law of Syllogism to figure it out.

How do you know when you've made it – finally become a big-time celebrity?

For Zach Johnson, he figures he's made it because he's become the subject of a problem in a high-school math textbook.

Zach got a tweet from a student named Austin Adams on Monday telling him that ''my math textbook showing you some love!''

In case you can't read the print in the photo above, the challenge is this:

''Zach Johnson won the Masters Tournament in 2007. Use the Law of Syllogism to draw a valid conclusion from each set of statements, if possible, If no valid conclusion can be drawn, write 'no valid conclusion' and explain your reasoning.''

1. If Zach Johnson's score is lower than the other golfers at the end of the tournament, then he wins the tournament.

2. If a golfer wins the Masters Tournament, then he gets a green jacket.

So, does Zach's Masters victory add up? It's been a real long time since I took algebra and geometry, but in simple terms the Law of Syllogism involves deductive reasoning – or as we used to call them, ''if/then'' exercises. Specifically, if you know that the first part of a statement is true, then the second part also is true.

In this case, we know that Zach's score at the 2007 Masters was lower than his competitors, so he won the tournament. And because he won the tournament, he got a green jacket. So, the correct answer is: Zach Johnson won the Masters, so he got a green jacket.

So there you go, Adam. Thanks for sharing – and now that this assignment is done, get on that history.


October 14, 2013 - 1:48pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Padraig Harrington
Getty Images
Padraig Harrington is in Bermuda this week to try and defend his title at the PGA Grand Slam of Golf.

Three-time major champion Padraig Harrington is in Bermuda this week to take on Masters champ Adam Scott, U.S. Open winner Justin Rose and PGA Champion Jason Dufner in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf at Port Royal Golf Course.

On Sunday, Harrington -- the defending champ of the event reserved for major winners -- put on a little show at the driving range with his impersonation of Happy Gilmore.

Have a look:

Chances are you won't be seeing Harrington break out that swing in the actual tournament, which takes place Tuesday and Wednesday.

RELATED: Join's Grand Slam Live!

You can follow's exclusive coverage of the Grand Slam here and you can also watch on TNT from 4-7 p.m. ET on Tuesday and 4-8 p.m. on Wednesday.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair

October 14, 2013 - 8:54am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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missing golf ball
City of Dublin
This golf ball sculpture went missing last week, but was returned on Saturday.

There's finally somewhat of a happy ending in the odd case of the 200-pound golf ball sculpture that went missing near the entrance to Muirfield Village last Monday -- the day after the famous course hosted the Presidents Cup.

If you remember, immunity was offered to those responsible for the theft provided they return the missing golf ball -- undamaged -- by midnight this past Saturday.

According to a report by in Ohio, the ball was returned late Saturday morning... but not without some damage. The ball had a foot-long crack and scratches.

In the report, said that Dublin Police discovered the ball at the 8200 block of Dublin Road. The City's community relations director said the city will pay to have the ball repaired.

The art work is worth about $2,500.

A second ball was also stolen last week, but was returned.

There's still no word on whether those responsible have been apprehended.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

October 13, 2013 - 10:03pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Jimmy Walker
Getty Images
Jimmy Walker got his 2013-14 season off to a bang with his maiden PGA Tour victory at the Open on Sunday.

Not to toot our own horn here, but "beep, beep!"

In this space last week, we offered up five players to watch at the 2013-14 season-opening Open at CordeValle Golf Club.

One of the players on that list was Jimmy Walker, the man who fired a 5-under 66 on Sunday to get to 17-under 267 total and claimed his first PGA Tour win.

Here's the reason we gave for why you should watch out for Walker:

"It's almost unfathomable that the 34-year-old is still winless on the PGA Tour. It just seems like he's always in the mix. In 2013, for instance, he notched 10 top-25 finishes. Five of those were top 10s. Walker had six top 10s in 2012 and four in 2011. It's only a matter of time before he finally kicks the door in. Walker has got to be jacked for his start at CordeValle this week too after missing out on the Tour Championship by a mere six spots."

How about that? Walker's 17-under mark tied 2011 champ Bryce Molder with a tournament record low score at CordeValle.

The tide turned for Walker when he made a 30-foot birdie putt to grab a share of the lead at 16 under on the 13th hole. One more birdie -- on the par-5 15th -- helped Walker to the two-shot victory over Vijay Singh.

Here's that bigtime birdie on No. 13:

READ: Jimmy Walker earns first PGA Tour win at Open

PGA Professional Nick Bailey -- the Director of Golf at CordeValle -- noted in last week's "Local Knowledge" that the 15th hole could be a pivotal one... and he was right.

What does this mean for Walker? Well, for starters, it pays to get your win early. Walker now has a two-year exemption through the 2015-16 season, an invitation to the 2014 Masters (his first trip to Augusta National) and a spot in the field for the 2015 Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Hawaii (only winners from the 2013 Hyundai Tournament of Champions through the 2013 Tour Championship are eligible for the 2014 Hyundai Tournament of Champions in January).

It also made for a very happy Mrs. Walker:



Japan's Hideki Matsuyama was also among the players on our watch list. Coming off his first appearance in the Presidents Cup a week ago, Matsuyama impressed with his tie for third at the Open.

RELATED: Check out all the clubs this week's winners used

This week, the PGA Tour heads to Las Vegas for the second tournament of the 2013-14 season, the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin.


EUROPEAN TOUR: David Lynn turns 40 next Sunday. This Sunday, he decided to celebrate a week early by capturing his first victory on the European Tour since 2004 with a win at the Portugal Masters.

At 18 under, Lynn edged out Justin Walters by one shot. Amazingly, Lynn was tied for 16th entering the final round, but snagged the victory with a brilliant, 8-under 63 that included key birdies on three of his final five holes.

READ: David Lynn wins on European Tour for first time since 2004

In other news, Miguel Angel Jimenez didn't exactly have the best finish -- a tie for 57th -- but with his ace at the par-3 eighth holes, it'll still be a memorable one because the prize for the ace couldn't have been a more fitting for the man known as the "world's most interesting golfer."

With the hole-in-one, Jimenez took home 100 bottles of something called, "Sexy" wine:

Jimenez wasn't the only person with a special hole in one recently.

Last week, we told you about the man dressed as a dog who won a car for a hole-in-one; a blind man who had an ace in the UK; and an extra-special hole-in-one by 10-year-old Austin Jet.

This week, the European Tour travels to Australia for the ISPS HANDA Perth International.

LPGA: On the LPGA Tour, 18-year-old Lexi Thompson notched a dominating four-shot victory over Shanshan Feng in the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia.

It was Thompson's second career LPGA victory to go along with her win at the 2011 Navistar LPGA Classic in Alabama.

Thompson's victory may also go a long way toward lending a hand to fellow teenager Lydia Ko. Last week, the 16-year-old Ko -- already a two-time winner on the LPGA Tour as an amateur -- made the decision to turn professional.

READ: Lexi Thompson wins by four shots in Malaysia

The LPGA requires its members be at least 18 years old, but Ko has filed a petition seeking a waiver to the rule.

Thompson did the same thing when she was 16 and was granted a waiver shortly thereafter.

Back to Thompson on Sunday. Her victory was the third by a teenager on the LPGA this season. For some perspective, Jordan Spieth's victory at the 2013 John Deere Classic was the first by a teenager on the PGA Tour in 82 years.

Thompson sent out this tweet after her win:

Next up for the ladies on the LPGA is the LPGA KEB-HANABANK CHAMPIONSHIP in Incheon, South Korea.

CHAMPIONS TOUR: Russ Cochran picked a good time to go on a birdie run. After an 8-foot putt dropped on the final hole at the SAS Championship Sunday, Cochran had his fourth consecutive birdie and a one-stroke victory over David Frost.

It was the 54-year-old Cochran's second win this season and his fifth on the Champions Tour.

READ: Russ Cochran victorious for second time this season on Champions Tour

"David played a great round, and I knew someone was going to play well," Cochran said. "I was hoping to hang around there and kind of catch fire. And it took every hole to do that.

The Champions Tour heads to Conover, N.C. this week for the Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

October 12, 2013 - 1:16pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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Cleveland Smart Square putter
Courtesy of Cleveland Golf
The key to the Smart Square is what Cleveland calls Dual Axis Alignment. Two squares, outlined in white, mounted on the putter's matte black crown create parallel lines that frame the ball at address and provide a clear visual path to the hole.

Some of the best ideas are also the most simple. That's how Cleveland Golf feels about its new Smart Square putter. 

Its concept: That using squares instead of circles – such as those found on the popular Odyssey 2-ball models – as alignment aids would help golfers line up their putts better. In fact, Cleveland said, its designers and engineers found that golfers aligned the Smart Square 23 percent more accurately than competitive putters.

The key to the Smart Square what Cleveland calls Dual Axis Alignment. Two squares, outlined in white, mounted on the putter's matte black crown create parallel lines that frame the ball at address and provide a clear visual path to the hole. They also generate two perpendicular lines that, Cleveland says, easily highlight when the putter is misaligned – even by a fraction of a degree.

The end result, the company says, is that golfers can get lined up more quickly and accurately than ever before. 

The Smart Square is a high-MOI putter, meaning it has a large (360-gram) mallet head designed for extra stability throughout the stroke and to minimize the loss of distance on mis-hits. It also features a copolymer face insert that promotes a consistent roll and enhances both feel and sound at impact.

The Smart Square comes in both heel-shafted and center-shafted models in traditional lengths (33, 34 and 35 inches), with the heel-shafted available in left- and right-handed models (the center-shafted model is only available in right-handed). There is also a 39-inch Almost Belly model with a heavier (400-gram) head and a heavier grip for counter-balanced weighting, which adds stability and consistency to your stroke without anchoring. Cleveland also offers custom belly-length models. 

The Smart Square has three degrees of loft and a 70-degree lie angle. It features a stepless double-bend steel shaft and Winn grip. It will be available at retail on Nov. 15, and carries a suggested retail price of $139.99 for the standard-length models and $179.99 for the Almost Belly.

For more on the Smart Square, here is a video from Cleveland Golf: