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Monday
Feb182013

Help Me Understand This Quote From A (Sometimes) Anchorer

Harrison Frazar is on the PGA Tour Policy Board and generally one of the more thoughtful and introspective players on the PGA Tour.

Since he may be casting a vote on the tour's potentially explosive position rejecting the governing bodies on the proposed rule change, I'm having trouble with this quote in Alex Miceli's extensive look at the issue heading into today's policy board meeting.

“I've used long putters; I've used belly putters; I've used short and regular; I've used ultra short with fat grips; I've used all of it,” Frazar said from his home in Texas. “And with the exception of helping me just simply get the ball in the hole from a foot-and-a-half, I didn't notice a whole lot of difference. It never really made me a better putter. So I'm hesitant to agree with them that it changes the way the game is played.”

So anchoring helped him get the ball into the hole from a very short distance, something he couldn't do with as much regularity with a traditional stroke.

That sounds like an advantage gained and not necessarily one earned through skill. Yes? No?

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Reader Comments (27)

Problem is he had a harder time getting it to 1.5 feet from 35 feet so it's a wash. Each of the methods he mentioned probably improved some little facet of putting for Harrison but if any of them were superior in an overall sense he would have stuck with that method.

There is no statistical evidence that's backs up the thesis that using an anchored putter is a better way to putt. Nor is there any evidence that hordes of young players are doing it, or an entire generation will skip out on learning to putt in the "conventional manner".

To the contrary, our own Ken One-Putt cited specific personal experience with refereeing AJGA and college events where he observed a very very low percentage of young players using a longer putter and generally speaking, if I remember correctly, his experience was that those who were "using" were weak putters.

So, we are back to the original premise, the ghosts in the machine just don't like the way it looks...

PS -- take the time to see Argo if you enjoy going to the movies.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Sarcasm? He's saying that a putting method helps him do so little, it's meaningless.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterD.
Yes. It helps. That's why Paul Runyan anchored on short putts back in the 50's.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered Commenter3foot1
@ Del - agreed, Argo is a good flick.

Though Harrison doesn't say it very eloquently at all, I do see the basic point. The longer putter will make certain putts easier for a few players - similar to the way that a switch to a face balanced putter, a shorter putter, a putter with an oversized grip, etc. may help players under specific circumstances. The long putter doesn't generally, unequivocally across the board make putting easier. It depends on the individual and the specific flaw to be addressed, in the same way that other putter forms and variations address other flaws. I used a belly putter for a while, and it helped me tremendously with gaining a feel for correct impact and release point. That said, I didn't necessarily find it easier to get the ball started on line, believe it or not.

The point that Frazar and others are completely missing is that the USGA never claimed that the belly was/is going to be/may be/may not be banned because it provides an unfair advantage or simplifies putting - they simply didn't think that anchoring is in line with the traditional definition of making a swing or stroke. As simple as that - and frankly, I agree with that. But for Frazar and others to complain that "nobody ever produced a study that showed that the putter provides an advantage" is completely bonkers and besides the point. That's not why it was banned.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlex H
"And with the exception of helping me just simply get the ball in the hole from a foot-and-a-half." Please, don't let him be my lawyer, ever.
Anchored...it's not a stroke!
02.18.2013 | Unregistered Commentermeefer
Golf is eating itself, all this bickering from pgat, as if the ban has to pass the supreme court of pga tour.

if pgat decided to take on usga, kiss the game buh bye
On the fence but I'm convinced that seeing Webb Simpson win the US OPEN pushed Davis over the edge to where he pulled the trigger on it.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
"the ghosts in the machine just don't like the way it looks" The funny thing is that the way the ban is written isn't going to change the way it looks, and may make it look worse. Most broom stick putters will just move the top of the grip a few inches away from their body, belly putters will try the Kuchar method, and some will go side saddle --- the ghosts will really hate that one. Golfers will not change to conventional because of the anchoring ban, they will get creative and the ghosts will have accomplished next to nothing.
"Help Me Understand This Quote"... what Frazar is trying to say is:

"I've been to Hollywood
I've been to Redwood
I crossed the ocean
for a heart of gold
I've been in my mind,
it's such a fine line
That keeps me searching
for a heart of gold
And I'm getting old.
Keeps me searching
for a heart of gold
And I'm getting old."
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBobby D
Harrison is of the Finchem Kool-Aid brigade....nuff said.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterPunch Drunk
Bobby D
+1
I like it!
02.18.2013 | Unregistered Commentergov. lepetomane
*It doesn't mean that much to him to mean that much to us...


*''it'' being the long putter

Ban the GD things...they are ugly, especially the Adam Scott style, and there is an obvious swing advantage for an unstable hand when that style of putter is viewed ''down the line''...it is a perfect motion, one hard to create without that anchored fulcrum at the top.

No one wants to here me say what the events have been thast brought us to this place, for yet the 125th time, but you know
I am right.

Hey hey, my my,

That boy can write, but he sure can't play or sing. In singing/music this is known as a ''style'', akin to Furyk vs the golf swing...it ain't pretty, but you like the way it plays..
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDigsouth
can someone explain to me how or what method should be used to come up with actual proof that anchoring is better. I am all for the ban mostly because it looks like cheating and sticking the club into your gut takes the hands out of the putt.

but how do we get facts that support or disprove the method. the old arguement that there aren't guys who anchor in the top 10 in putting says nothing about whether the guys using the anchor would be worse off without it.

i believe we don't have actual proof because its impossible to come up with actual facts unless we require alternating years of using the anchor and not using anchor. the whole theory that we need proof to ban is messed up. this is why the usga stated the rule as to comply with the golf 'stroke'. Flat out, without being so PC, they think it looks horrible and looks like cheating and don't want every golfer using this method 20 years from now, even if they dont have some random stats that can prove it being more beneficial.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJeffC
Dig - the man has his own sound, and owns it.

I always think guys like Neil, Dylan and Kris K who are great writers/bad singers sound better doing their own stuff than more talented vocalists who cover them. Those guys write for their voice.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
You won't come up with proof that the anchored stroke is an advantage because it is not an advantage. There is no proof to be found. You may think the putting style looks silly, but I promise you, the short stick putting stroke looks just as ridiculous.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered Commenterh2o-boy
Interesting comments from all. I disagree from DigSouth that the long putter (Adam Scott style) is an obvious advantage. I can see that the anchor provides stability but the disadvantage is the loss of feel and separating the hands. Most people putt and chip with their hands together, I assume it is a superior method. I can't see that Adam Scott winning occasionally ruins the game. He couldn't hold up at the Open last year, even with the broomstick.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMatt H.
professional ball sweepers association

PBSA
Lets face it, by bracing it against your body makes it an illegal stroke. Of course it helps some players because of that, so does a lot of other devices that are not legally allowed on the course. Change the law or ban it.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMichael
Bingo, Geoff.

Kind of like "Coach" Craig T Nelson saying, "I've been on food stamps and welfare, did anybody help me out? No."
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFWIW
Bobby D. is my Internet Hero of the Day.

Thankfully, Mark Knopfler was a luckier in love than Neil D., and more adroit in expression:

...
And every time I'm thinking of you from a distant shore
And all the time I sleep
I will have a reminder that my baby wore
A part of you to keep
And I'll send you all my promises across the sea
And while we are apart
I will carry the wonder that you gave to me
I'll wear your golden heart

Nothing in the world prepared me for, your heart, your heart
Nothing in the world that I love more your heart, your heart
Your golden heart
02.18.2013 | Unregistered Commenter3foot1
So here's another take on the issue. For years a broad spectrum of the game have criticized 'anchoring' and sought the revision of the rules. The rulemaking bodies, after lengthy consideration, agreed with the broad spectrum of the game and issued a change in the rules. Why should we be surprised that a narrow spectrum of the game objects to the change? Prior to this time they spoke against any rule change. They will now campaign for its repeal. They won't succeed; the broad spectrum of the game finds 'anchoring' an abomination that never ought to have been allowed in the first place. If the ruling bodies felt it was a close call, they would not have acted. It wasn't a close call. The new rule is widely welcomed in the golfing community.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterF. X. Flinn
Tighthead, yes I have to agree, and then you have unique voices that we come to love, a style that takes most any song and makes it theirs; Willie Nelson, Rod Stewart, Billie Holiday among those special voices, not really ''great'' in the classical sense, but just amazing in their strange beauty. BTW, if you like Holiday, then give a listen to Kat Edmonson

And then there is Geddy Lee !

Matt H. ,only when you see a behind the putter angle can you appreciate that all he needs to do is learn how far to take it back and follow thru...it is like it is on a rail as far as ''straightness''.It is truly a pendulum anchored and rocking fore and aft in a perfect line!

Rock on, yall!
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDigsouth
F.X., that may be thee single largest load of bovine dung I have ever seen on this website, or anywhere for that matter...
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Man, sorry I am continuing to OT, but in my clicking on my laptop I found this old youtube of SRV at his last ACL taping, and I was there, sn amazing night, wherehis tone was as good as I have ever heard him, and I go back to the Rome in, Blue Monday, the Triple Threat Review, with Miss LouAnn vamping, and you have to listen to he ed, where they are playing VooDoo Child, and hear Chris talk about his dream.

Also, I have a ACL way back of Eric Johnson, playing ''Virginia'', the name inside that strat when he took it apart with a few of us...it's
#245... I have had 3 3 digit strats, #379, #366, and I can't remember the other one...all sold way too cheap!

Anyway if you have never heard Johnson, just listen tho the first song, and watch!

Sorry for the musical interlude, Geoff, but we all need this :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-vfqV5yFgg

And Eric:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Rs8XSLsIJo
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDigsouth
Neil D? Not the right Neil.

Digs, as a Canadian I am supposed to find Geddy tolerable at worst, but I don't. His best work was on the McKenzie Brothers album.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
Dancin across the water
Cortes, Cortes...
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterUbb
It is not a stroke. Like others have said: you can do whatever you want, but it ain't golf.
02.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterUbb

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