Valero Texas Open
We discuss the mood of several high finishers at the Masters, this week's Valero Texas Open, and dole out a few new nicknames
Valero Texas Open
Where: San Antonio, Texas
Course: TPC San Antonio (AT&T Oaks Course)
Defending champion: Adam Scott held off Fredrik Jacobson by a shot to claim his first PGA Tour title in two years.
This Week's Fix Six
2. J.B. Holmes
3. Anthony Kim
4. Adam Scott
5. Martin Laird
6. Spencer Levin
Welcome to another edition of Fantasy Fix, where if we close our eyes, we can still hear the roars coming from Augusta National. What a finish, though we can't believe that a guy whose parents didn't finish his first name when filling out his birth certificate won the Masters. What we can believe is that someone that light can compete on such a big golf course. Since when does weight matter in golf? The South African could comfortably fit in a pant leg of Charles Barkley, yet it's not like the Chuckster is bombing 300 yard drives down the middle. In any matter, that was fun. It's just too bad there's a big break in the schedule now... wait, there's another tournament this week? OK, better get to it.
The PGA Tour heads to the Lone Star State for the Valero Texas Open. Last year the tournament moved to the brand-awareness friendly A&T Oaks Course at TPC San Antonio, which was designed by Greg Norman with the help of Sergio Garcia (please insert golfing gods/losing joke here). We hope the fact the Spaniard didn't bother showing up this week isn't an indication of track's quality. When it comes to the quality of the field, not surprisingly, it's a little weak and not just because of Garcia's absence. Incredibly, only one player teeing it up on Thursday has won on tour this year. His name? Johnson Wagner. His win? The Mayakoba Golf Classic. You get the point.
Random tournament fact: The winner has the honor of donning a pair of cowboy boots at the awards ceremony Sunday night. And by honor, I mean has the misfortune.
Adam Scott. After nearly a decade of hearing he was the next Tiger and then a couple years of hearing he's washed up, the Aussie nearly shocked the golfing world with his first major championship at Augusta. The green jacket was his for the taking after a kick-in birdie on No. 16 in the final round, but unfortunately for him, Schwartzel was there to take it away with those four closing birdies. How will Scott bounce back? Considering he didn't choke and he never seriously contended in a major before, I believe him when he says he's taking positives from the experience. After handling some of the world's toughest greens so well, he's also clearly adjusted to his new long putter, making him a safe play this week.
RANDOM STUDS OF THE WEEK
Martin Laird. The Masters rookie made the cut, but was only mentioned over the weekend when Ian Baker-Finch basically blamed him for Tiger's missed three-footer for par on No. 12 in the final round. I'm sure his parents were really pleased by that. The CBS announcer thought Woods was affected by having to wait so long for Laird to complete a three-putt of his own. Hence, his new nickname, the "Tiger Stopper." No reason to believe he can't contend here after recently winning at Bay Hill.
J.B. Holmes. After narrowly missing qualifying for the Masters, the long hitter is well rested (then again, so is most of the rest of this field). Holmes finished T-13 here last year despite a disastrous final round of 76. The Kentucky native is still looking for his first PGA Tour win at a venue other than the TPC Scottsdale. Maybe the TPC San Antonio is where it will finally happen. And yes, we called J.B. Holmes a stud...
FAN MAIL BREAK
"Hey, Alex. Sorry about letting you down, since I know you went out on a limb to pick me at the Masters. I really thought I was going to pull it out, but those three-footers are getting tougher in my old age. Keep me in mind at Congressional. Sincerely, Tiger Woods."
You got it, Tiger, though I'll need to see similar ball-striking for another couple tournaments before I pick you for a U.S. Open. No, Tiger didn't really write me, but I bet he does appreciate the support since most of the golf media had written him off despite the fact he has about half of his career (or more) remaining. Seriously, though, please feel free to e-mail me with comments, questions or just to make fun of my picks. And of course, you can follow me on Twitter.