This Week in Golf: FedEx Cup Playoffs…and More!

Bart PotterThis year, at this time of year, the buzz on the PGA Tour is not about the majors (so yesterday) or the Presidents Cup (so not the Ryder Cup). It’s about the FedEx Cup playoffs and the $10 million prize and whether it’s possible to think of derailing Jason Day, the Best Player on the Planet today if it’s not Jordan Spieth or Rory McIlroy and whatever happened to Dustin Johnson anyway?

Nobody understands the FedEx scoring system, but there does seem to be a way that a player could win it by playing well at the right time.

I seem to remember a guy, not that long ago, Woods, I think. Tended to contend. Won a few. Not in the conversation this fall. They say he’s working on his game. Somewhere.

This week in golf

PGA Tour
Sept. 4-7: Deutsche Bank Championship, TPC Boston, Norton, Mass.

 Out there

LPGA Tour
Sept. 10-13: The Evian Championship, Evian-les-Bains, France

Web.com Tour
Sept. 10-13: Hotel Fitness Championship, Sycamore Hills Golf Club, Fort Wayne, Ind.

National Amputee Golf Association
Sept. 14-18: 67th National Amputee and 26th National Senior Amputee Championships, Bent Brook Golf Course, Birmingham, Al.

Champions Tour
Sept. 25-27. Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach, Pebble Beach Golf Links, Monterey, Calif.

Wounded Warrior Project
Oct. 7: Wounded Warrior Golf Classic, Firewheel Golf Park, Garland, Texas

 Bart Potter is an independent, and sometimes irreverent, golf enthusiast.  For more of Bart, go to www.greygoateegolf.com

Pride Outlasts Herron at Winco Foods Portland Open

Bart Potter
Cover photo of Dicky Pride-Portland Tribune-Photo Chris Oertell
 Mathematically validated: Varner III is in The 25.
Dicky Pride outlasts Tim Herron to win at the Winco Foods Portland Open.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Tim Herron’s chunked chip on 18 yesterday at Pumpkin Ridge had immediate consequences and others he couldn’t have known about.

Tim Herron’s chunked chip on 18 had immediate consequences for Harold Varner III, adopted son of Grey Goatee Nation, and he couldn’t have cared less about the rest.

Harold Varner III, shown in action at Pumpkin Ridge’s Witch Hollow yesterday, will take his swings next year on the PGA Tour. Photo by Scott H. Bisch
Harold Varner III, shown in action at Pumpkin Ridge’s Witch Hollow yesterday, will take his swings next year on the PGA Tour.
Photo by Scott H. Bisch

When Herron plopped it into the tall grass short left of Witch Hollow’s 18th green, it meant he wouldn’t be making up a three-shot deficit on Dicky Pride with one dramatic chip-in.

For Varner, who was standing nearby, the miracle-that-wasn’t for Herron was the miracle-that-was — a mathematical miracle, because 25 stayed 25 and didn’t change no matter what was roiling up and down above and below. Note: do not expect an explanation of the math. No human being could explain it.

The 25-year-old Varner entered the WinCo Foods Portland Open at No. 25 on The 25 – the top 25 money-winners on the Web.com Tour — and needed to stay there to earn his PGA Tour Card. Varner shot one-under 70 Sunday, and then waited it out … until the final group of the day and Herron’s third shot.

The non-mathematical way of telling it: if it had gone in, AND Pride had taken bogey, it would have meant a playoff — and more waiting for Varner.

Dicky Pride (right) outlasted Tim Herron to win the WinCo. Photo by Scott H. Bisch
Dicky Pride (right) outlasted Tim Herron to win the WinCo.
Photo by Scott H. Bisch

Herron would have needed to win the playoff to bump Varner out of The 25 … but he chunked, Pride made a scrambling par, and … the math works.

Pride, 46, who hadn’t won a professional tournament since 1994, moved from 4oth all the way to No. 5 with the $144,000 winner’s check … and next year will get to chase purses on the PGA Tour — where the math is the same but the numbers are a lot bigger.

 Bart Potter is an independent, and sometimes irreverent, golf enthusiast.  For more of Bart, go to www.greygoateegolf.com

This Week’s Winners In Professional Golf!

Congratulations to this week’s winners in Professional Golf!

PGA Tour (FEDEXCUP PLAYOFFS): Australian Jason Day, The Barclays (Edison, New Jersey), $1,485,000 prize money, -19 under par.

LPGA Tour: American Kris Tamulis, Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic (Prattville, Alabama), $195,000 prize money, -17 under par.

Champions Tour: American Jeff Maggert, Dick’s Sporting Goods Open (Endicott, New York), $285,000 prize money, -14 under par.

European Tour: Belgian Thomas Pieters, D+D REAL Czech Masters (Prague, Czech Republic), €166,660 prize money, -20 under par.

Photo: 2015 The Barclays Champion Jason Day / PGATour.com