Jordan Spieth is not one to brag or rodomontade. So while the following seems like bluster, know that, to the three-time major winner, it's anything but.
Speaking to the media on Wednesday at this week's Zurich Classic, Spieth stated he rewatched his final round at this year's Masters, where the 24-year-old cobbled together an admirable Sunday charge before running out of holes, his eight-under 64 finishing two strokes behind Patrick Reed. Despite the low figure, Spieth felt he left a few strokes out on Augusta National. Five, to be exact.
“I look back on it and I actually thought that I truly could have shot 59 without doing much more other than making a few more putts,” Spieth said. “I put myself in opportunities on each hole to shoot 59 that day, which is really, really cool.”
For context, a 59 would have shattered the tournament record by four shots, as well as broken Branden Grace's 62 at Royal Birkdale last summer for lowest round at a major championship.
Conversely, it's not that far from truth, as Spieth had putts that slipped by on the final two holes.
“In all honestly, I made a couple putts, but it wasn’t really a hot day with the putter,” Spieth continued. “I just put myself in position to birdie just about every hole.”
The short game has been a recurring storyline for Spieth this season. Routinely one of the best putters on tour, his flat stick has gone cold: entering New Orleans, he ranks 183rd in strokes gained/putting.
But to Spieth, his past two outings are an indication that things are headed in the right direction.
“I was working on things throughout the year, thinking I was doing the right things, and I feel like I got the short game back on track in Houston and Augusta," he said. “And to hit some of those putts under pressure and see some go in, I think that will be very beneficial going forward this year. It very well could be a spark for a really solid year.”
Spieth will be playing with Ryan Palmer in this week's team event. The duo finished T-5 at the Zurich last spring.