Woods announced Tuesday he will skip this month’s British Open, a decision that is of little surprise to anyone in golf. He hasn’t played since he withdrew during the first
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“Unfortunately, I’ve been advised that I should not play in the British Open,” Woods said on his website. “As I stated [previously], I am only going to come back when I’m 100 percent ready.
“I do not want to risk further injury. That’s different for me, but I’m being smarter this time. I’m very disappointed and want to express my regrets to the British Open fans.”
Tiger Woods will miss two majors in one season for the second time in four years.
He might as well announce he’s taking the rest of the year off because, at this point, a return would be more newsworthy than the slow drip of announcements of skipped tournaments. His stated focus on full recovery – rather than rushing back – is about the only positive news here for golf fans.
Perhaps the most telling aspect of the website release is its near complete lack of optimism. Tiger releases news like a dictator through his state-run news agency; you have no idea what’s true. All you can do is read between the lines.
Besides a closing quote claiming “I think my best years are still ahead of me” (he’s the only one), there was none of his traditional breezy claims that this is nothing major and everything will be fine with a little ice and R&R and anyone doubting Tiger’s resolve will be proven a fool.
Woods’ career is clearly in major trouble, and the fire hydrant, the Perkins waitress and Rachel Uchitel are no longer the issue.
Forget (not that Tiger will) the chase to break Jack Nicklaus’ record 18 major championships. Woods is stuck on 14, with three lengthy stretches away from the game (one personal, two injuries).
He’s going to be 36 in December and the clock is ticking on the likelihood he can regain the momentum to win five more majors and accomplish what once seemed inevitable. (In 2007, I actually wondered if the 2011 PGA Championship would be the tournament he broke the record.)
[Related: Tiger’s withdrawal is no surprise]
In the 14 majors up to and including his dramatic 2008 U.S Open triumph over Rocco Mediate that led to surgery on his left knee, he won six, finished second four times and recorded two other top fives.
Counting the British, he’ll have chalked up zero victories in the most recent 13 majors, finishing in the top five just four times.
At this point the goal should be to regain some kind of consistent game that can make him a viable player on the PGA Tour. He’s headed toward two years without a victory of any kind. He rarely plays. When he does, he exhibits wild inconsistency – twice at the 2011 Masters he put together brilliant nine-hole runs only to be undone by bafflingly poor runs. And he keeps getting hurt.
Long ago Tiger put all his eggs in the break-Nicklaus’-record basket. It’s led to him viewing each major championship as an opportunity that couldn’t be passed up. It’s led him to hurry back, full of the kind of gumption that led him to believe he could win at less than 100 percent.
He admits he even extended that to the Players Championship, the so-called fifth major.
“In hindsight, I probably shouldn’t have competed at the Players, but it’s a big event, and I wanted to be there to support the tour,” Woods said. “I’ve got to learn from what I did there and do it right this time and not come back until I’m ready.”
At this point you wonder if “ready” will ever come. He might consider reevaluating his goals, starting with being a contender in any tournament again.
The knee has been surgically repaired four times that we know. Woods dramatically changed his swing recently in an effort to cut down on the wear and tear that came from his old, high torque, motion.
“I can’t swing [the old] way,” Woods acknowledged back in April. “It took a pretty good pounding on my knee doing it that way. As you know, I tore cartilage and my ACL over the years, so I don’t want to swing that way. It’s too much pain.”
With a new swing but an old injury, what Woods needs most is time.
Time to heal and then time to get his game in order while building up the strength to again put together four rounds of complete golf.
Unless Tiger finds all that time soon, playing in the PGA Championship next month seems almost pointless. A slow, solid recovery is the proper route here.
He might as well take a long, hard look at writing off 2011. It’s been a year of so few positives, even his website is getting pessimistic.
The closest I came to catching a baseball at a major league stadium was the year SkyDome opened. I was 9. Mauro “Goose” Gozzo, a rookie pitcher for Toronto, was trolling around the outfield during batting practice when a man standing next to me shouted for him to throw him a ball for his son. Goose obliged and fired a strike. Emboldened, I asked Goose for a souvenir, too. His next throw didn’t quite reach the stands, even with my lean over the rail. My mom extracted me before Goose could try again.
There is something magical about a baseball, a 5¼-ounce orb made of rubber, cork, yarn and leather, that excites grown men as much as it does children. People catch balls while holding babies, sacrifice $10 beers in pursuit of them, fight and claw for their possession. Everyone in the stands who catches a ball thrusts it into the air. It’s a trophy. Sometimes the applause is polite. Other times the whole crowd cheers. The pursuit of a ball inside a stadium is noble.
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Police officers and fans look over the railing where a Texas Rangers fan fell while trying to catch a ball tossed in the stands.
It’s especially so when a father tries to fetch a ball for his child, like the man next to me at SkyDome did, and like a man at Rangers Ballpark did Thursday night. His name was Shannon Stone. He was a firefighter from Brownwood, nearly a three-hour drive from the stadium in Arlington. He wore a white T-shirt and a blue Texas Rangers hat. His young son wore a red T-shirt and a red Rangers hat. They sat in the left-field bleachers together.
In the second inning, Oakland A’s outfielder Conor Jackson(notes) hit a screaming foul ball down the left-field line. It caromed toward Josh Hamilton(notes), the Rangers’ left fielder. Hamilton picked it up and threw the ball toward the stands. Players do this hundreds of times in a season. It’s part of baseball’s charm. Show up to a stadium, take home a piece of the game.
Hamilton’s toss came in shresultats bac algerie 2011ort. It didn’t stop Shannon Stone from stretching to grab it. I’m almost certain, in fact, that the moment before Shannon Stone fell 20 feet and suffered injuries that would kill him, he was indescribably happy. He was going to grab a baseball from Josh Hamilton, a man who hauled himself from the depths of drug addictionRésultats BAC 2011 Maroc Résultat to not only return to baseball but win the American League MVP award last season. Once Stone had that baseball, he was going to hand it to his son. And for the rest of his life, his son would have a story to tell about the time his daddy reached over a railing and snagged a bad throw from Josh Hamilton, one of the most talented players ever to wear a baseball uniform.
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“Please check on my son,” Stone said.
This is unfair. It’s so very unfair. It’s unfair to Josh Hamilton, a decent man and a father to thrdates résultats bac 2011ee daughters. He tried to do a good deed. That’s all he tried to do. It’s unfair to Shannon Stone, a firefigRésultats brevet des collèges 2011hter for 18 years who just wanted to make his kid’s night. It’s most unfair to that son. He will grow up without a father.
I have a son. He is 3resultat bac 2011 maroc sur Menara et par SMS. I’ve taken him to a few ballgames. He likes the hot dogs and fireworks. He wants to know the players’ names. He asks who is nice and who is mean. And when I’m going down the scorecard, answering his questions, he interrupts me and asks to get ice cream.
One night on the waRésultat du Baccalauréat bac 2011lk back from the ice cream shop at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., my son asked to sit in a seat down the right-field linRésultats du bac 2011 Française. We moved to the front row. A foul ball ricocheted toward us. My son loves foul balls. When one goes into the upper deck, he’ll crane his neck behind him in case it falls. He always asks me to geCopa America 2011 Live Streamt one for him, and I tell him I’ll try, and here was my chance. Someone closer beat me to it. That always happens.
The next time we go to a stadium, I’ll try again. Maybe for the first time in 30 years I’ll get lucky and a ball will come toward me or a player will toss it in my direction. If I have to lean a little to grab it, so bLucian Bute vs Jean Paul Mendy Live Streame it. When I pass it to my son, and he lifts his prize, and the crowd around us applauds, his smile will light up the stadium.
He’ll know it was a gift from Amir Khan vs Zab Judah Tickets Live Streama dad who loves him more than anything, a gift fathers hand to their sons at ballparks every day. A gift Shannon Stone, a dad who caught a foul ball for his son, never got to give.
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