Holiday Spirit: Augusta National Clubhouse...In Gingerbread

While we brace ourselves for a holiday Friday news dump, the holiday spirit is alive and well at Adams Golf, where they Tweeted this photo of a gingerbread Augusta National clubhouse.


Horton Smith's Green Jacket Up For Bid

Dave Kindred with the backstory on first Masters winner Horton Smith's green jacket--given to him retroactively by the club in 1949--going up for bid.

The auction is handled by who else, but Green Jacket Auctions.

"Of the so-called 'Original 10' jackets," Carey said, "all were accounted for except Smith's. We had kind of given up ever finding it."

Carey's company three years ago sold Doug Ford's 1957 green jacket for $62,967. Heritage Auctions two years ago sold a green jacket that may or may not have been worn by Bobby Jones for $310,700.

Lackovic, 76, a mortgage dealer in suburban Atlanta, and his brother, Tom, kept the Horton Smith jacket after the death of their mother, whose second husband had been Renshaw Smith, Horton's brother and also a professional golfer. On Horton Smith's death in 1963, the jacket passed to Renshaw, who died in 1971. For the 42 years since, the jacket has been in the Lackovic brothers' closets.

"We knew it was part of golf history," Michael Lackovic said. "But we never made a big deal out of it."

Just A Mood Brightener For Your Midweek Blues: Sergio Garcia Sat Down To Pen Tiger Woods An Apology Note

There is justice!

I'm not sure why the mental image provides such pleasure--maybe it's the thought of Sergio ala Nicholas Cage in Adaptation working through writers block and taking an hour just to write the words Dear Tiger,--but the handwritten note was the big reveal from Tuesday's U.S. Open press conferences at Merion.

Sam Weinman with the lowdown and final chapter in the saga between these lovebirds...well, until they are paired together.

When bad weather rolled in Monday afternoon, Garcia lost track of Woods and never got a chance to see him again. That left him to leave a note for Woods in the locker room. Whether Woods read it or not is something he wasn't willing to acknowledge -- only saying that Garcia never apologized to him in person and that he had bigger things to worry about.

"It's already done," Woods said. "We've already gone through it all. It's time for the U.S. Open."

Should you want, here are parts of their press conferences. Starting with Sergio.

And Tiger.

Adam On Moving The Putter A Millimeter Away, Putting On The Green Jacket Every Day

Jim Tucker focuses on Adam Scott's new morning routine at home of waking up and putting on the green jacket.

Bob Harig on Scott's first press conference since the Masters, where the Masters champ budged a bit on anchoring in the future. A few millimeters to be exact.

In the interest of context, Scott's anchoring remarks in their entirety:

Q.  Are you going to be relieved in any way when the USGA and R&A make their final decision on anchoring maybe just to get the debate out of the way?  And if they do ban it and the TOUR goes along with it, do you have a backup plan for three years down the road to working a conventional putting method into your practice?

ADAM SCOTT:  I think, yeah, I think I'll be relieved when it's all over and we can all get beyond it.  I may or may not like the outcome of that, but I think we've all spent enough energy on it now, doing what they're doing.

No, I don't really have a backup plan.  I'm just going to keep doing what I'm doing and deal with it then.  I don't think there will be anything much for me to change.  If I have to separate the putter a millimeter from my chest, then I'll do that.

Q.  Will three years be enough time to prepare?

ADAM SCOTT:  Yeah, tomorrow is enough time for me.  I don't see myself putting any different looks‑wise.  My hand will be slightly off my chest, probably.

“It wasn’t a shining Friday for Fred Ridley and he has at his disposal the best rules officials in golf."

David Eger's comment in today's Charlotte Observer story by Ron Green Jr. about sums up the sentiment I've heard most from the rules community in the story that won't go away: Tiger's Friday Masters drop.

“It wasn’t a shining Friday for Fred Ridley and he has at his disposal the best rules officials in golf,” Eger said. “I’m sure he had more resources available to him than I had sitting at home with my digital recorder playing it back. For the head guy not to use all the resources available to him is disappointing.”

Meanwhile, thanks to reader Chris for tipping me to the Jerry Tarde's just-posted July Golf Digest column stirring up what seems like a non-issue to many at this point: Tiger's decision to keep playing the 2013 Masters. Tarde goes with the what if angle and it's certainly a provocative take.

The decision to, in effect, disqualify himself would go down as one of the legendary gestures of sportsmanship alongside Nicklaus conceding Tony Jacklin the two-foot putt that would tie the 1969 Ryder Cup and German long-jumper Luz Long advising Jesse Owens to start his long jump short of the foul line to ensure qualifying for the final after fouling in his first two attempts at the 1936 Summer Olympics. (Long would go on to get the silver to Owens' gold.) 

Eger: Not Likely To Pick Up The Phone Again

In case you were still unclear on the completely harmless effort by David Eger to save Tiger from a 2013 Masters DQ for signing an incorrect card and the questionable response to Eger's call from Masters championship chair Fred Ridley in responding to assistance from an outside agency of Eger's stature, check out this Golf Central interview with Eger.

It won't be up long, but the key quotes are:

"I wouldn't have called if I wasn't 100 percent certain."

"First time I've ever called."

"With the outcome, I probably wouldn't call again."