It was a delightful cool morning of golf at LACC. I followed the Homa-Scheffler-Morikawa group for all 18 and came away with a couple takeaways.
Scottie Scheffler’s U.S. Open started with an ominous bogey at the first hole, a gettable par-5. Well, Scheffler’s entire opening round could be categorized as ominous. The putter, a club that has plagued him this year, wasn’t cooperating early. Scheffler let a few birdie chances pass, but then, after a great approach at 9, he was off and running. There is an air of inevitability when you watch Scottie Scheffler. Even when he’s struggling like he was early on Thursday, there is a feeling that it’s just a matter of time before he turns it on. Scheffler made birdies at 10, 12, 15, and 16. Suddenly, he was near the top of the leaderboard despite playing the par 5s one over.
We’ve come to expect Scheffler to be in contention at every major. The putter has been the only thing that has held him back from notching six wins this year. In the lead-up to the tournament, Scheffler logged hours and hours on the putting green. Sometimes, in golf, trying to grind out bad habits can just amplify a problem. But on Thursday, it looked like all that practice might have helped Scheffler work something out. If the putter continues to cooperate, he’ll inevitably be a force on the weekend.
This piece originally appeared in The Fried Egg newsletter. Subscribe for free and receive golf news and insight every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.