The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today’s winner is Golf World’s Ron Sirak. He gets the award for the following.

The second obstacle facing Sorenstam is the depth of talent on the LPGA tour right now. Suzann Pettersen, in her first year working with her new coaching team of Lynn Marriott, Pia Nilsson and Gary Gilchrist, won five times, including a major, and emerged as a challenger for the top spot in women’s golf. Meanwhile, Morgan Pressel, Paula Creamer, Natalie Gulbis, Brittany Lincicome, Meaghan Francella and Nicole Castrale all won this year, indicating the United States has produced a twenty-something pool of talent to replace the disappointing the thirty-something group of Americans.

The article was about Annika Sorenstam trying to regain the #1 spot in women’s golf. There are three problems with what Sirak wrote above.]]>< ![CDATA[

1- Morgan Pressel is still a teenager not a twenty something.
2- Stacy Prammanasudh isn’t listed by Sirak. She is American, 28 years of age, and was a tournament winner in 2007. Stacy won more money than both Castrale and Francella in 2007 and was a member of the US Solheim Cup team.

This is the second time Sirak has omitted a Asian-American golfer from lists of American tour winners. He did the same thing with Kim Saiki a few years back. Kim being born in that foreign country called California.

Is Sirak a racist? Don’t know, but he’s careless that is for sure.

3- Where’s Cristie Kerr in those twenty somethings? She only won the US Open last summer. Now Kerr did become thirty late last year, after her Open triumph. However Sirak also writes-

Add the crafty veterans like Karrie Webb, Se Ri Pak, Sherrie Steinhauer and Pat Hurst and it will be much more difficult for Sorenstam to dominate than it was when she won 43 of 104 LPGA starts from 2001 through 2005.

If you don’t list Kerr with the twenty somethings, she should be at least a crafty veteran. After all she has been on the LPGA since 1997 and has 10 tour victories.

I could also note are Hall of Famers only crafty veterans? Webb and Pak are in the HOF. As much as I like Hurst and respect Steinhaurer, they have 5 LPGA wins(1 major) and 8 wins(2 majors) respectively. Whereas Pak has 24 wins(5 majors) and Webb 35 wins(7 majors)

Sirak also wrote this-

Throw in the plethora of talent from Asia–Jee Young Lee, Ji-Ai Shin, Ai Miyazato and others

Those three Asian golfers have won exactly ZERO US LPGA events. To be fair Lee won one in South Korea in 2005, and Shin isn’t a LPGA member. Miyazato, who I like and predicted to win her first event in 2008, has not lived up to the hype she got before joining the tour in 2006.

Who did Sirak forget? The Constructivist gives you the answer

Mi Hyun Kim and include Jeong Jang, Seon Hwa Lee, Angela Park, and new mom Hee-Won Han.

Those five players have over a dozen LPGA tour wins, 4 rookie of the year titles, plus one major championship. Oh and with the exception of Mi Hyun, they are all in their twenties or late teens.

Lastly Sirak writes the following-

and the LPGA has its best depth since the heyday of Betsy King, Patty Sheehan, Amy Alcott, Beth Daniel, Dottie Pepper, Nancy Lopez, Meg Mallon and Juli Inkster, who remains one of the 10 best players in the women’s game.

Where is Ayako Okamoto in this list? She won 17 LPGA events between 1982 and 1992, competed against all those mentioned by Sirak, was LPGA player of the year in 1987, and was inducted into the Golf Hall of Fame in 2005. Pepper and Mallon are not hall of famers.

Maybe I just proved Sirak has a problem with Asian golfers or is a racist. I don’t make that charge lightly, but here’s a post where I point out the different standards used for judging white versus Asian golfers by other LPGA golfers. There is a pattern to Sirak’s mistakes that make you have to wonder. He should know better about who these golfers are.

If I want to nitpick even further, It is Sherri not Sherrie Steinhauer and Ji-Yai not Ji-Ai Shin. Does anyone at Golf World bother to fact check or proofread?

The stupidity of journalists paid to cover professional golf full-time never ceases to amaze me. AP’s Doug Ferguson has stuck his foot in his mouth many times, just as recently as last November. Lorena Ochoa will qualify for the Golf HOF before age 30 and that means at least in Ferguson’s mind, that the Hall is too easy to qualify for. Other than Laura Davies, who’s been two points short of qualifying for five years, who else is banging down the Hall’s door? No one, there isn’t an active player who was in the top 50 money winners the last two years who is within 10 pts of qualifying other than Davies.

Someone out there is going to say who cares, well I do. I tried for two years to get credentialed to cover an LPGA event and got turned down. Either because

1- I’m a blogger
2- OTB media had never covered a golf event before. How do you get to cover it, if no one will credential you? A obvious Catch 22 to any thinking person.

Finally with the help of The Palm Beach Post’s Craig Dolch, I got credentialed to report on the ADT last November. My work can be found here.(I’ve done other original reporting, like how DCF and JP Morgan failed to timely deliver Emergency food stamps after Hurricane Wilma in 2005.) I’ve called Craig the best golf writer I read regularly, and that long before he came to my assistance. We’ve traded emails on a regular basis for 5-10 years.

Sirak and Ferguson were both at the ADT in November but we never talked. Ferguson screwing up that tournament’s coverage when he said Christina Kim hadn’t played in it previously. Funny I followed her in the 2004 Pro-Am!(Christina had played in the ADT in both 2004 and 2005)

Maybe you don’t care but I do. I think I could do a far better job of covering the tour than those bozos who are getting paid to do it now. Golf World’s Ron Sirak is today’s Knucklehead of the Day.

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