Mexico Open at Vidanta

Vidanta Vallarta


Birdies and Bogeys

The final major of the season is underway. Who flourished on Day 1? Who faltered? Let's take a closer look with our first PGA Championship edition of birdies and bogeys.

Birdie: Kerry Haigh -- The PGA of America course set-up chief had a record 7,674 yards at his disposal to punish players with, but he showed some needed discretion by moving up a handful of tees, most notably the par-4 12th and par-3 13th, both of which played 30 yards shorter.

Bogey: Alvaro Quiros -- The long-hitting Spaniard risked the ire of Tiger Woods on the par-5 11th, when he hit a driver off the deck and into Woods' group on the green.

Birdie: Quiros -- The guy's no idiot. Quiros' first order of business when he saw Woods was to apologize.

Bogey: Afternoon wave -- After Tiger Woods and Padraig Harrington provided Hazeltine an early jolt, the afternoon players fell flat, with just two of the top 10 players on the leader board teeing off after lunch.

Birdie: Bridgestone Invitational -- The top four finishers last week were again atop the leader board after the first round at Hazeltine. So if you were wondering, yes, Bridgestone is a pretty good PGA tune-up.

Bogey: Stewart Cink -- The British Open champ gave himself some Twitter fodder when he opened with a double bogey and made another on the par-4 fifth when he skulled a sand shot over the green and flubbed the ensuing chip to go five-over par. We expect a little more out of our major winners, Stewart.

Birdie: Stewart Cink -- Turns out we got it, with the champion golfer of the year making four birdies over his last 12 holes to get back to one-over par. We never doubted you.

Birdie: Paul Casey -- The world's third-ranked player has been battling a rib cage injury and had the decency to not only withdraw to give Tim Petrovic a spot in the field, but did so an hour prior to his tee, personally informing Petrovic of his decision to give him ample time to warm up.

Bogey: Kids who don't get it -- As Ian Poulter sprinted to the port-o-let off the seventh fairway, a young lad no more than 10 years old asked, "can I have a ball" just as Poulter was about to open the door to the loo. To Poulter's credit, his answer was perfect. "Not just now," he said.

Birdie: Midwest golf fans -- Give 'em credit, Midwest golf fans are among the game's best. Sure, Tiger being out early helped, but fact is there were fans all over the golf course and they were vocal, too, making this Thursday at a major feel more like a Sunday. The PGA and USGA would do well to get to this part of the country as often as possible.

Bogey: John Daly -- While Minnesota born-and-raised Tim Herron waited anxiously for a spot in the field to open up, Daly paid little respect for his, shooting 78 in the first round and then withdrawing with a "back injury". By then, it was too late for the 39-year-old Herron, who saw perhaps his last chance to play in a hometown major slip from his grasp.

Birdie: The television microphone on 16 -- Hunter Mahan's second shot on the par 4 was headed for the water when it struck a microphone situated near the green. Mahan got up-and-down for par and ended up shooting 69.

Birdie: The entrepreneurial spirit -- An enterprising fan was selling cigars near the eighth green, offering Dominicans for $10 each and alleged Cubans for $20. The man, who wished not to be identified, said he expected to sell more than $5,000 worth of stogies during the week.

Compiled by E. Michael Johnson and Sam Weinman