BIG PLAY with T.J. TOMASI

August 21, 2005

WHO: Phil Mickelson

WHAT: 50-foot pitch to set up the winning birdie

WHERE: Par-5 18th at Baltusrol

WHEN: Final round of the PGA Championship

WHY
Mickelson's pitch will silence critics who questioned his meticulous preparation for Baltusrol. Scouting the terrain gave him the knowledge and peace of mind he needed when his ball was buried in the rough by the 18th green. He played the shot perfectly. He kept his hands low and cocked his wrists to get the clubhead high going back and through. He also accelerated at impact.

T.J.'S TIP
To Pitch High, Forearm to the Sky

When pitching from deep rough, you must maintain the loft on your club face from address all the way to the finish. To do that, keep the inside of your trailing forearm facing the sky from the point when you cock your wrists (early in the backswing) until just after impact (inset). If you do this correctly, you'll have an abbreviated finish with the club face facing the sky. (You should be able to see the grooves on the club.)

T.J. Tomasi teaches at Lyman Orchards Golf Club in Middlefield, Conn., and is a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher.

... AND ANOTHER THING

"No matter what Tiger Woods says, his swing is shakier, and he's nowhere near the player he was in 2000. Statistics and win totals don't lie."

TOP 100 TEACHERS POLL

Which Tiger Woods is better?

Tiger 2005 ...37%

Tiger 2000 ...63%

"Woods in 2000 will never be matched, but nobody can keep up with him now, either."

--MIKE PERPICH

RiverPines Golf Club

COLOR PHOTOCOURTESY OF CBS (MICKELSON) THREE COLOR PHOTOSGINA HOUSEMAN (TOMASI, 3)JIM GUND (BACKGROUND) COLOR PHOTOROBERT BECK (WOODS)   Woods 

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)