Same deal as yesterday. Going to see how long I can last. My goal is the unveiling of the pairings.

5 AM

Couple of thoughts

-Perfect example of why I like the “sacrificial lamb” strategy. US has weakest against, Euro best. Still 30% they pick up a point, which they are about to do. Then, it’s an improved chance in the other three. Bubba and Overton turned that match, and it was the difference between a good and bad US day.

-Horrible decision from Rory to go for it. Cink had a clear benefit to making eagle and not much risk, with Kuchar in good shape. Once, Cink could no longer make eagle, there was no point in trying to get one yourself. Euro’s could have had 2 birdie opportunities to one. Instead they each took one, and the match was halved.

Woods 70% to win. Bubba 97% to win.

4:45 AM

-Stewart Cink must not be trying hard enough. He’s missing 30-footers. Take some lessons from Overton, son. They do halve, though, which is good for them. Rory gets the croud going with a birdie on the next one. Cink, misses another longish putt. What the hell is going on?

-Stricker hits a pretty nice drive on 15, which is not a risk reward hole, it’s just a long hard par-3. Hole is tied with Birdie.

-Here’s a list of a few things that won’t happen in alternate shot:

Overton will NOT make every 30 foot putt he looks at.

Cink will NOT make every 30 foot putt he looks at.

-Back to action: Overton makes par to tie Donald on 14.

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.26 1.74
MATCH 1 Thru F
Mickelson/DJ 0.00% ######
Kaymer/Westwood 100.00% ######
Tie 0.00% ######
MATCH 2 Thru 16
Cink/Kuchar 26.50% 277
Rory/G-Mac 28.40% 252
Tie 45.10% 122
MATCH 3 Thru 15
Woods/Stricker 66.70% -200
Poulter/Fisher 8.90% 1024
Tie 24.40% 310
MATCH 4 Thru 14
Watson/Overton 95.80% -2281
Donald/Harrington 0.30% 33233
Tie 3.90% 2464

4:30 AM

-Just missed Bubba and Overton halving 13 on the last hole. I would feel really confident except I witnessed Clark and Weir in last year’s President’s Cup.

-Tiger and Poulter decided not to participate in the 14th hole. That’s fine, Stricker makes bogey, and Fisher caps off a pretty horrendously played hole for pros with a decent length bogey for the halve.

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.48 1.52
MATCH 1 Thru F
Mickelson/DJ 0.00% ######
Kaymer/Westwood 100.00% ######
Tie 0.00% ######
MATCH 2 Thru 15
Cink/Kuchar 64.10% -179
Rory/G-Mac 12.50% 700
Tie 23.40% 327
MATCH 3 Thru 14
Woods/Stricker 64.70% -183
Poulter/Fisher 13.00% 669
Tie 22.30% 348
MATCH 4 Thru 13
Watson/Overton 93.30% -1393
Donald/Harrington 1.10% 8991
Tie 5.60% 1686

4:15 AM

-US Team loses the first match. Not a huge deal overall, since they were bascially behind all day. A few more missed 20-footers from Overton and Cink, though, and that might look worse.

-US 1-up in second match with three to play.

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.46 1.54
MATCH 1 Thru F
Mickelson/DJ 0.00% ######
Kaymer/Westwood 100.00% ######
Tie 0.00% ######
MATCH 2 Thru 15
Cink/Kuchar 64.20% -179
Rory/G-Mac 11.10% 801
Tie 24.70% 305
MATCH 3 Thru 13
Woods/Stricker 64.30% -180
Poulter/Fisher 16.30% 513
Tie 19.40% 415
MATCH 4 Thru 12
Watson/Overton 92.40% -1216
Donald/Harrington 2.00% 4900
Tie 5.60% 1686

4 AM

-GMac and Kuchar trade par putts at 14, which looks like a difficult hole. Ties help the US a lot more at this stage of the match.

-Overton is the Stewart Cink of Saturday, or whatever day it is. Making tons of long putts.

-Tiger and Stricker tie 13 with Pars.

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.45 1.55
MATCH 1 Thru 15
Mickelson/DJ 1.20% 8233
Kaymer/Westwood 89.50% -852
Tie 9.30% 975
MATCH 2 Thru 14
Cink/Kuchar 61.70% -161
Rory/G-Mac 16.20% 517
Tie 22.10% 352
MATCH 3 Thru 13
Woods/Stricker 63.00% -170
Poulter/Fisher 18.80% 432
Tie 18.20% 449
MATCH 4 Thru 12
Watson/Overton 91.50% -1076
Donald/Harrington 2.00% 4900
Tie 6.50% 1438

3:45 AM

-The first match arrives at 15. It’s been called a great risk reward hole. Except, every player takes out the Driver and whales away. Not much decision.3 or 4 players had easy pitches, DJ’s was hard, but safe to say going for it is right call there. Americans of course butcher it, and Euros take the hole.

-Donald and Overton trade birdies at 11. US still up 2 there. I wish Overton the best, but he has really made an absurd number of long putts this season. That seems unlikely to continue.

-Stricker chips in. Quite lucky, but he’s best player in the world inside 100 yards. Not a typical announcer exaggeration. True.

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.28 1.72
MATCH 1 Thru 15
Mickelson/DJ 1.50% 6567
Kaymer/Westwood 89.00% -809
Tie 9.50% 953
MATCH 2 Thru 13
Cink/Kuchar 55.80% -126
Rory/G-Mac 21.10% 374
Tie 23.10% 333
MATCH 3 Thru 12
Woods/Stricker 63.10% -171
Poulter/Fisher 17.60% 468
Tie 19.30% 418
MATCH 4 Thru 11
Watson/Overton 75.20% -303
Donald/Harrington 11.00% 809
Tie 13.80% 625

3:30 AM

-Stricker makes a long birdie and Fisher ends up dropping one on top of him. AS thru 11.

-I wondered if Dustin and Phil played more inconsistent from hole to hole as they do from round to round. Based on today, that seems like a yes. Lot’s of birdies, lots of bogies and a few pars and doubles mixed in. Dustin, true to form, finds the water, and Westwood almost makes them pay, but lips out. US still alive in that one.

-GMac and Rory capitalize by making a birdie at 13. Were 9% to win before hole, 18% after.

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.26 1.74
MATCH 1 Thru 14
Mickelson/DJ 14.40% 594
Kaymer/Westwood 63.20% -172
Tie 22.40% 346
MATCH 2 Thru 13
Cink/Kuchar 56.30% -129
Rory/G-Mac 18.70% 435
Tie 25.00% 300
MATCH 3 Thru 11
Woods/Stricker 42.10% 138
Poulter/Fisher 39.10% 156
Tie 18.80% 432
MATCH 4 Thru 10
Watson/Overton 73.10% -272
Donald/Harrington 13.00% 669
Tie 13.90% 619

3:15 AM

-Donald makes me look like a genius by halving on 9.

-Phil and DJ halve the 13th with par 3s.

-Kuchar narrowly misses the Americans third straight hole win in that match, with a slight delay.

-Overton opens with birdie, back to 2-up for the USA in that one. Like I said all week, a true American hero.

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.47 1.53
MATCH 1 Thru 13
Mickelson/DJ 20.70% 383
Kaymer/Westwood 58.60% -142
Tie 20.70% 383
MATCH 2 Thru 12
Cink/Kuchar 77.30% -341
Rory/G-Mac 9.30% 975
Tie 13.40% 646
MATCH 3 Thru 10
Woods/Stricker 42.70% 134
Poulter/Fisher 35.80% 179
Tie 21.50% 365
MATCH 4 Thru 10
Watson/Overton 70.40% -238
Donald/Harrington 13.60% 635
Tie 16.00% 52

2:45 AM

Interesting strategy to see who will play best ball and who plays alternate shot. My sims suggest variance is a huge advantage in best ball. I’m not sure if this is true.

Four lowest standard deviations on US team are Kuchar, Furyk, Cink and Mahan. That fits nicely into two pairings based on what US has done so far.  One the European side, Kaymer, F Molinari, E Molinari and Peter Hanson or Luke Donald are lowest. Molinari brothers make sense. Kaymer and Donald is a decent alternate shot pairing.

The other thing to consider is obviously alternate shot is a pretty weird format . Might just be best off going with someone who has played it the most. Seems like captains might do okay with this.

Live odds for remaining matches with 10000 sims:

Assumed Donald makes that putt, which is probably 85% to 90%

USA ePTs-EURO ePTS 2.28 1.72
MATCH 1 Thru 12
Mickelson/DJ 20.36% 391
Kaymer/Westwood 60.45% -153
Tie 19.20% 421
MATCH 2 Thru 11
Cink/Kuchar 75.15% -302
Rory/G-Mac 10.75% 830
Tie 14.10% 609
MATCH 3 Thru 10
Woods/Stricker 42.99% 133
Poulter/Fisher 37.80% 165
Tie 19.21% 420
MATCH 4 Thru 9
Watson/Overton 54.78% -121
Donald/Harrington 26.65% 275
Tie 18.57% 43

1:00 AM

Just to follow up on the post that I did earlier, Corey Pavin really could have made a huge difference in this Ryder Cup if he had said, “No, I don’t want to change the format.”

Furyk, Woods, Stricker and Phil are the only four Americans who can be expected to get more than .5 points on average against the European team in Europe. The rule is all matches that don’t end by 7 p.m. on Monday are halved and the weather appears that it will not cooperate and it is highly likely that there would have been matches on Monday if the actual format was kept.

Pavin could have stuck out his four best, told them to play as slow as possible, and put his weak links in the 10,11,12 spots almost gauranteeing they get a half, when overall they are more like .4 expected points. This would have been a genius move and well within the rules. I understand everyone wants to see the match finished on schedule, but honestly I’d rather not watch the end of the Ryder Cup because it happens at 4am then have the rules change mid-tournament.

If Pavin had said, “look I agree that the rules should be changed for this situation, but we can’t do it mid competition.” is that out of line? No. Personally if I was the US captain and they tried to force this garbage on me, I would have taken the Ryder Cup, grabbed my team, and taken the first charter back across the Atlantic.

This kind of messing with the rules can’t be good for the Ryder Cup. It’s like they changed the rules of the NFL at halftime of the NFC Championship to say you only need one foot down after one team has already had 3 touchdowns overturned by the rule.  Kind of embarrasing.


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