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Ryder Cup: Sauce Forecast

In The Eurozone #5, I mentioned that I’ll be getting more into Ryder Cup tracking in the forthcoming volumes–especially tracking the possible rookies for Team Europe. As a preview of the chord I’m trying to strike, let’s take a look at one guaranteed European first timer: Jon Rahm; and one likely pick for Jim Furyk: the “BigTabernacle” Tony Finau

In Thursday’s first round of the WGC Mexico Championship, these fine young gentlemen put on a crash course of #TourSauce 101 in twenty-seven blissful seconds of golf coverage.

Let’s go frame-by-frame to demonstrate the anticipated sauciness of the upcoming Ryder Cup matches.

1:16:15

The sequence begins with possible USA Ryder Cup Rookie Tony Finau lining up a slightly sliding 12-footer. Not an easy putt, but one Tony probably expects to make about 1 out of every 3 attempts.

1:16:20

A slowly-creeping downhill putt meanders its way right of the hole. Finau, with five seconds to ponder the reaction, safely settles for an in-vogue sauce move:  “The Umpire.” Solid form on the set-up, here:

1:16:22

Finau takes a full two seconds to release the wrist into a full-blown steeeerrrriiiiiiiiiiiiike!

Bonus points to Webb Simpson for another saucy move:  creeping in behind the putter to get a peak at the line after the putt has already stopped moving.  (Y’all remember when Webb Simpson won the US Open and was on the 2012 Ryder Cup team? We are definitely in the worst of the parallel universes.)

Why do I say that it’s in vogue? Because Mr. Kizzire threw the hammer down on this move last week:

1:16:33

After the tap-in, Finau keeps it real with the absolutely crucial move of muttering “WOW” in pure disgust as he walks off the green after a two-putt par. The self-loathing has to be under one’s breath enough so that a playing competitor isn’t totally distracted while lining up his putt, but obviously mouthed enough to ensure the cameras pick it up clearly.

1:16:36

As if the previous 16 seconds of sauce weren’t enough, the good blokes at Golf Channel cut to the crème de la crème in the very next switch. Jon Rahm has this 18-incher for a ho-hum bogey after missing a 10-footer for par:

1:16:37

#Rahmthreat strikes the putt just fine. A putt he makes 99.999% of the time. It’s in as soon as he hits it. No drama.

1:16:37.5

Ohhhhhkaaaaaaayyy so he slid it in the side door a bit. Still–this putt is in the hole. I promise. I’m not trolling.

1:16:38

See! You can trust me! The ball is in the hole! AND YET:  JON RAHM IS GOING FULL SPIKE-MARK BLAME AFTER A MADE PUTT:

1:16:38.5

Oh yeah, baby–that’s the good stuff. Full commitment. Head tilt. Mutter of “WOW” that the mic barely pics up, just like Finau. Checks all the boxes.

1:16:42

Golf proverb I just made up: “The only problem with making it is you gotta bend over to pick it out of the damn hole.”

And here we are. Twenty-seven seconds. Two probable Ryder Cup rookies with family lineages that are nearly 180 longitudes apart. One common thread:

Baptism by sauce.

About the Author

Job is pronounced with a long O. Aspiring club champ and golf course architecture nerd. Living proof that breaking 80 is even harder than it looks. Usually just trying to make it to my next tee time. Lived in Jacksonville, FL before NLU made it cool. jwfickett at gmail.

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