Nearly a year ago to the day, the golf world watched in amazement as Tiger Woods dramatically defeated Rocco Mediate to win the 108th United States Open.
Hampered by a torn ligament in his knee, he used his putter just as much for a walking stick as he did to nail 16-foot, downhill benders. Despite the injury, Woods sank a putt on the final hole of the tournament to force an 18-hole playoff with Mediate. The duo played that Monday playoff to even par, forcing a sudden death playoff hole that Woods won for the title.
Wonder how he’ll top that.
Woods will have his chance to defend his US Open title Thursday, when the 109th US Open gets underway at Bethpage Black in New York.
The tournament, which begins 10 a.m. Thursday on ESPN, features 156 professional and amateur golfers and is being played on a course that last played host to the US Open in 2002. The winner that year? Woods.
While he may not win in dramatic fashion this year, the golf world will once again be tuned in to see if Woods can repeat as champion when the tournament concludes on Sunday.
Braves see Red
The Atlanta Braves have something in common with the world’s top golfers this week; they’ll be seeing a lot of red.
Woods and his peers hope they score low enough to get into red digits, while the Braves hope they score enough to defeat their two opponents this week, the Cincinnati Reds and the Boston Red Sox.
The series with the Reds begins Tuesday with Jair Jurrjens (5-4, 2.85 ERA) matched up against Reds starter Aaron Harang (5-6, 3.74) at Great American Park in Cincinnati.
The Braves enter this week losers of four of their last five and they’ve scored more than three runs just once in that span. The offense has a chance to improve this week when it heads to two of the more hitter-friendly ball parks in the Major Leagues.
After a three-game set with the Reds, Atlanta heads to Fenway Park to take on the Red Sox in interleague play. The three-game set will be one of two series with Boston in two weeks, as the Red Sox come to Atlanta from June 26-28.
The Gwinnett Braves will also see some red this week when they finish of a eight-game round trip with a four-game series with the Louisville Bats, the Triple-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds.
The ping is the thing
Tired of hearing the crack of the bat? Tune in to the College World Series this week on ESPN and ESPN2.
The country’s eight best teams are going head-to-head to crown this year’s champion, which was won last year by cinderella Fresno State.
The Southeastern Conference and Atlantic Coast Conference are represented well with Arkansas, LSU, Virginia and North Carolina comprising half of the tournament field.