Brandel Chamblee may have stumbled onto to something that will excite sponsors of golf tournaments in economically unstable countries and, get this, help the PGA Tour funnel even more money to charity!
In a GolfChannel.com column, Chamblee argues that Matt Kuchar’s underpaid looper in last fall’s Mayakoba Classic was enumerated handsomely by Mexico’s standards, justifying the lack of normal PGA Tour caddie pay.
In Mexico, depending upon the source, the average weekly salary is $285. Ortiz makes a reported $200 a day – six days a week – being a caddie at Mayakoba, about four times the average weekly salary. Assuming he was idle for a week as the Tour took over his course, he would have been out $1,200. But he was, by all accounts, paid at minimum $5,000 – not the initially inferred $3K – roughly four times his average salary and around 17 times the average salary in Mexico. One can easily see why he would be inclined to enter into such an agreement with Kuchar. It was by any definition, a good week for him.
Now, I think we should push this theory forward a bit and suggest that this standard apply not just to the uh, help, but also to the players. If times are lean in a country, PGA Tour purses should reflect what is a good payday in those lands. That way we don’t have controversies like this going forward!
As for Tom Gillis, who called out Kuchar’s payment and tracked down the caddie to find out he received $5000 of Kuchar’s $1.3 million, Golfweek’s Eamon Lynch talks to the now-senior golfer about his role in calling out the underpayment on Twitter.
“Maybe I should have been a union rep,” Gillis said with a laugh. “I’d be willing to fight for the little guy anytime.”
A player prone to policing the personal affairs of his colleagues must accumulate enemies on Tour, I suggested.
“I’m sure some of them are totally against it and think we shouldn’t be airing that dirty laundry. That’s fine,” he replied. “When the man gets paid I can look in the mirror and feel good that I helped this guy out. When I hit the button to send that stuff out, I’m well aware of what’s coming with it.”