Is it just my imagination, or does Phil Mickelson just look tired and worn out as of late? He just doesn’t seem like the Happy-Go-Lucky Phil we have seen over the years. It almost appears like he has become tired of the PGA Tour grind, or is he having physical problems that he isn’t telling us about?
If you remember back at the Masters in April, as he finished his final round, and knowing he would not be in the playoff with Bubba Watson and Louis Oosthuizen, you would have thought he had won. He had that big smile going and continued shaking hands with fans, as well as, signing autographs on his way to the scorer’s tent. That was the last time he appeared to be enjoying himself out there. Phil loves The Masters, and is his favorite tournament of the year.
The problems seemed to start with a whirl wind month of May. He had a mediocre performance at the Wells Fargo Championship where he finished with a T-26. The next day he was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame, then on to the Players Championship where he struggled to a 3 under par finish T-25.
The following week, he went to Dallas where he actually played pretty well in the HP Byron Nelson, shooting a 66 in the final round and finishing tied for seventh. Two days later, Phil took his wife Amy to Europe for her birthday, visiting multiple countries on a trip that would exhaust a teenager, let alone a 42 year old golfer.
After returning to his home in San Diego, he then flew to Long Island for a corporate outing and straight to Columbus for Jack’s tournament at The Memorial. During that first round, he was a mess. He appeared tired, and seemed to have no patience with the crowd, even complaining about people snapping pictures while he was playing. Asking for a ban of cell phones on the golf course. Very un-Phil like. He shot 79 and promptly withdrew from the tournament, saying he needed to get some rest prior to the US Open.
At the US Open, his play didn’t improve much, his pair of 71′s in the second and third rounds kinda kept him in the tournament, but his final round of 78 would drop him to 16 over and a T-65 finish.
Mickelson copped to playing poorly – he hit four fairways, five greens and saved par from the sand once in five tries – and made no excuses for that, saying the course setup was “awesome. If you struck it well you got rewarded. I struck it horrendously and I got penalized, and that’s the way it should be.”
After Phil won the ATT Pebble Beach Pro Am back in February, he seemed to be on a roll, finishing tied with Bill Haas and Keegan Bradley the following week at Riviera. He lost in the playoff when Haas made a miracle 15 foot putt, but I remember telling my wife during the playoff that Phil just looked exhausted. He seemed to be just going through the motions of playing and missed some shots that in the past Phil just didn’t miss.
Maybe Phil needs to take a sabbatical and a long needed rest. At this time he is also involved in a group of people who are trying to buy his home town San Diego Padres baseball team. I don’t think he would admit it, but I’m sure this in itself is taxing his time and patience level and keeping us from seeing the fierce competitor we’ve had in the past. For a decade, Phil has been the “What’s good in Golf” and we need that Phil back at some point.
During Tiger’s woes and infidelity, Phil was the guiding light that stood by his wife during her cancer treatment. He showed us what being a husband, father and family man was supposed to be. He made us proud to be Americans. We need Phil to be back to being Phil.
Photo Courtesy Presswire
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