“Blade versus mallet” is becoming more of a relevant argument over the past several years as more and more PGA Tour pros are opting for mallet putters with higher MOI (moment of inertia, a measure of forgiveness) instead of the classic Anser-style putters that most pros once employed. But, exactly how many top golfers are actually using mallets instead of blades now?
That’s what I wanted to find out. In order to do so, I simply looked up the top-50 golfers in the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR) and went through recent Getty Images (as close to August 9, 2018 as possible) to determine whether they’re currently using a blade or mallet putter. I then repeated the process with the current top-50 golfers in Strokes Gained: Putting as per PGA Tour’s website on August 9.
What’s the point of this? Well, each golfer is different and you should definitely get fit before making a putter purchase. But to me, it’s just interesting to see how many top golfers and great putters are using mallets compared to blade-style putters, and how any stigma surrounding mallet putters is all but gone. Heck, even Tiger Woods recently switched to a mallet-style putter.
Note: Using an Odyssey rep’s suggestion, I classified Phil’s Odyssey No. 9 putter as a “modified blade,” as well as a few other blade-style heads that have MOI-raising designs i.e. Patrick Cantlay’s Cameron Concept, Ricky Barnes’ and Anirban Lahiri’s No. 9-style heads, and Billy Horschel’s PXG. So these putters were included in the “blade” category. If you disagree with calling these modified blades, I understand.
Let’s get to the numbers.
Top 50 players in the OWGR
Mallet (22-out-of-50): 44 percent
- Dustin Johnson (No. 1 in the OWGR)
- Justin Thomas (No. 2)
- Justin Rose (No. 3)
- Jon Rahm (No. 7)
- Jason Day (N0. 10)
- Henrik Stenson (No. 17)
- Xander Schauffele (No. 19)
- Webb Simpson (No. 20)
- Tyrrell Hatton (No. 25)
- Kyle Stanley (No. 26)
- Kevin Kisner (No. 27)
- Ian Poulter (No. 31)
- Kiradech Aphibarnrat (No. 32)
- Brian Harman (No. 33)
- Charley Hoffman (No. 35)
- Branden Grace (No. 36)
- Pat Perez (No. 38)
- Kevin Na (No. 41)
- Daniel Berger (No. 43)
- Ross Fisher (No. 46)
- Luke List (No. 47)
- Cameron Smith (No. 49)
Blade (28-out-of-50): 56 percent
- Brooks Koepka (No. 4)
- Rory McIlroy (No. 5)
- Francesco Molinari (No. 6)
- Jordan Spieth (No. 8)
- Rickie Fowler (No. 9)
- Tommy Fleetwood (No. 11)
- Patrick Reed (No. 12)
- Alex Noren (No. 13)
- Bubba Watson (No. 14)
- Paul Casey (No. 15)
- Hideki Matsuyama (No. 16)
- Marc Leishman (No. 18)
- Phil Mickelson (No. 21)
- Bryson DeChambeau (No. 22)
- Sergio Garcia (No. 23)
- Patrick Cantlay (No. 24)
- Matt Kuchar (No. 28)
- Tony Finau (No. 29)
- Rafa Cabrera Bello (30)
- Louis Oosthuizen (No. 34)
- Satoshi Kodaira (No. 37)
- Matthew Fitzpatrick (No. 39)
- Thorbjorn Olesen (N0. 40)
- Byeong Hun An (No. 42)
- Gary Woodland (No. 44)
- Haotong Li (No. 45)
- Si Woo Kim (No. 48)
- Zach Johnson (N0. 50)
Top 50 players in SG: Putting
Mallet (28-out-of-50 players): 56 percent
- Jason Day (No. 1 in SG:Putting)
- Greg Chalmers (No. 3)
- Daniel Summerhays (No. 5)
- Webb Simpson (No. 6)
- Kevin Kisner (No. 7)
- Justin Rose (No. 8)
- Peter Malnati (No. 9)
- Beau Hossler (No. 10)
- Graeme McDowell (No. 12)
- Dustin Johnson (No. 14)
- Seamus Power (No. 15)
- Brian Harman (No. 16)
- Denny McCarthy (No. 21)
- Tyrrell Hatton (No. 22)
- Chesson Hadley (No. 23)
- Derek Fathauer (No. 26)
- Ben Crane (T27)
- Nicholas Lindheim (T27)
- Branden Grace (No. 32)
- Austin Cook (No. 33)
- Brandt Snedeker (No. 35)
- Aaron Wise (No. 36)
- Justin Thomas (No. 37)
- Brett Stegmaier (No. 39)
- Tiger Woods (T44)
- Patton Kizzire (No. 46)
- Brandon Harkins (No. 48)
- Kiradech Aphibarnrat (No. 50)
Blade (22-out-of-50 players): 44 percent
- Phil Mickelson (No. 2)
- Alex Noren (No. 4)
- Emiliano Grillo (No. 11)
- Patrick Rodgers (No. 13)
- Johnson Wagner (No. 17)
- Brian Gay (No. 18)
- Michael Thompson (No. 19)
- Whee Kim (No. 20)
- Billy Horschel (No. 24)
- Hunter Mahan (No. 25)
- Wesley Bryan (No. 29)
- Jimmy Walker (No. 30)
- Bud Cauley (No. 31)
- Paul Casey (No. 34)
- Michael Kim (No. 38)
- Matt Kuchar (No. 40)
- Martin Laird (No. 41)
- Dominic Bozzelli (No. 42)
- Ricky Barnes (No. 43)
- Anirban Lahiri (T44)
- Russell Henley (No. 47)
- Rickie Fowler (No. 49)
For those keeping track at home, this means that 8-of-the-top-10 in Strokes Gained: Putting are currently using mallet putters. On the flip side, 3-of-3 major champions in 2018 used blade putters to win. Again, not exactly sure what this means. But it’s interesting.
What do you take away from these results?
Mizuno announces new JPX 919 Tour Forged irons are coming August 29 (via cryptic Twitter post)
While cryptic, it does appear Mizuno is announcing via Twitter that its new JPX 919 Tour irons are coming on 8/29/18. One would have to assume that means they will be launched on 8/29, not actually hitting retail on 8/29, but that remains to be seen.
— Mizuno Golf North America (@MizunoGolfNA) August 17, 2018
We recently spotted a number of new irons on the USGA conforming list, including the JPX919 Tour irons pictured above, JPX919 Forged and JPX919 Hot Metal irons from Mizuno. So it’s likely that the JPX 919 Tour Forged irons won’t be alone in the JPX 919 family when they hit retail.
The JPX 919 Tour iron specifically pictured in the Tweet above seems to be the replacement for Mizuno’s JPX 900 Tour irons that Brooks Koepka used to win this year’s U.S. Open and PGA Championship. Learn more about the original JPX 900 Tour design from Mizuno’s Chris Voshal on our Gear Dive podcast.
Diving a bit deeper into the picture from Mizuno’s Tweet, it appears the JPX919 Tour irons will utilize Mizuno’s familiar Grain Flow forging, and will be made from 1025E; that’s based on the hosel stamping that says “GF Forged HD 1025E.”
Stay tuned for more info from Mizuno.
USA Stars & Stripes, European Flag Chrome Soft Truvis golf balls arrive
Getting you in the Ryder Cup spirit a little more than a month from the competition in Paris, Callaway announced Chrome Soft European Truvis golf balls and new Chrome Soft X Truvis Stars & Stripes balls today.
The Carlsbad company is also bringing its popular Chrome Soft Truvis Stars & Stripes balls back to market.
The new European Truvis balls features a European-themed white, blue, and yellow design. Both Chrome Soft Truvis Stars & Stripes balls include a patriotic red, white, and blue pattern.
All models of these made-in-the-USA golf balls will be available at retail August 24th and will sell for $44.99.
An Interview with T Squared putters, started by a high school golfer
I’ve coached high school golf for over 15 years, and I thought that I had run out of “firsts.” Then, Anthony Tuber, one of our varsity six, told me that he builds putters. “Sure,” I thought. You purchase the components and assemble putters. Nice hobby to have. “No, coach, I build them from scratch. We have milling machines.” If that doesn’t catch your attention, not much will.
As a coach, you encourage your golfers from a base of experience, but I don’t have any club-making experience! The last time I played around with metal was in middle-school metal shop. In this particular case, the student is the coach, and the golfer is the teacher. I’m now the proud owner of a T Squared putter, and continue to be the proud coach of Anthony Tuber. He might be the next Bob Vokey, or Scotty Cameron, but for now, he is a varsity golfer and high school student. Oh, and he happens to make putters. Rather than write a review that might be perceived as biased, I decided to do a straightforward interview with T Squared Putters. If you want to learn more, visit the company website, or follow them on Twitter and on Instagram.
Question 1: What type of research and field testing did you do, prior to building your first putter?
Prior to making our first putter we bought a bunch of putters to see what we liked and disliked about them. Then we took those putters and tested them to figure out which roll we liked the best. The roll is determined by the weight of the putter the length and the groove pattern. After we completed the testing we drew up a design and shortly after that we had our first prototypes. We then tested those prototypes and they rolled exactly how we wanted. Time went by while we used these first putters but then we really wanted to see the competition. We went to the PGA Merchandise Show and that’s where we found out that we had a superior putter.
Question 2: Is there a style of putter that you like, that perhaps served as inspiration for some of your designs?
We bought and tested dozens of putters but two putters caught our eye and those putters are the Scotty Cameron Squareback and the Scotty Cameron Newport 2 Notchback.
Question 3: Can you tell us a bit about the materials/components that you chose for T Squared Putters?
We use American-made 303 stainless steel in all of our putters, but we also we use 6061 aircraft aluminum for the insert on the 713i.
Question 4: How do you balance your responsibilities and commitments, with your T Squared production?
During the school year academics are my number one priority. Over the summer I have been balancing my Tsquared putters work while working on the progression of my golf game. Fortunately I have a team that is very supportive of my vision for T Squared putters.
Question 5: Any chance we will see a mallet-style putter from T Squared?
Yes, we are currently testing other mallet putters to determine the most desirable features for our mallet putter. We are anticipating a prototype soon.
Question 6: Are you a better putter now that you know so much more from the design and production side of putters?
Yes, I have an entirely different perspective when I stand over every putt.
Question 7: How do you get the word out about the quality of your putters?
We have been very active on social media. The golfers that are currently using a Tsquared putter have been spreading the word. We have also been attending local golf tournaments to establish our brand.
Question 8: Do you hope to make a career of this venture, or do you envision it as a step along the path of a 21st-century businessman?
Yes, as golf is my passion I hope to take Tsquared putters to the next level. Golf will always be a part of my life whether it is professionally or recreationally.
Question 9: Finally, what question haven’t we asked, that you wish we would? Ask it and answer it, please.
I haven’t been asked how this process has affected me as a person. As a 17 year old I have a new appreciation for patience, persistence and hard work.
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