SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – Jordan Spieth said he hasn’t paid attention to others dissecting his putting stroke and trying to explain why Spieth currently ranks 190th in strokes gained: putting, 161st in three-putt avoidance and T-144 in percentage of putts made inside of 10 feet. He’s too busy trying to get his stroke back.
And on Tuesday at Shinnecock Hills, Spieth expressed that he’s getting close to rediscovering his typical form on the greens.
“Everyone goes through peaks and valleys of results in any part of your game, and I just got a little off in setup (with the putter) and I’m really starting to bring it back now,” Spieth said. “It feels very good.”
Spieth is coming off a missed cut at the Memorial Tournament, but his putter can’t be blamed for that one. Spieth actually had his best putting week of the season (in events where strokes gained statistics were kept), gaining an average of 0.921 strokes on the greens. That would’ve ranked him 11th in the field if he would’ve translated that to 72 holes at Muirfield Village.
Instead, Spieth had an uncharacteristically bad ballstriking week, losing an average of 2.913 strokes from tee to green. For the season, he ranks fourth in strokes gained: tee-to-green.
Could it be that Spieth puts it all together this week at Shinnecock Hills?
“I feel like my game is in the best shape it’s been in a long time, including last year,” said Spieth, who won three times, including the British Open, a season ago, but also has only three top-10s in his last 13 starts.
“And my results don’t necessarily speak towards that, but I feel that way.”
Spieth said he’s been frustrated by the lack of weekends on Tour this season where he hasn’t been in contention. Even before his final-round 64 and third-place showing at the Masters, he didn’t enter Sunday at Augusta National with a realistic chance to win.
But he pointed to the weekend between the WGC-Dell Match Play and the Houston Open as the moment where he put his current season into perspective.
“A really big weekend for me of settling down and getting back on the right track with things and recognizing that it’s a long career, and, you know, results aren’t going to come by wanting them to come,” Spieth said. “They’re going to come by being obsessed with the process, getting back to the basics, being an athlete, figuring out within the swing, the intricacies of the game … the reasons I love to practice – that’s what’s going to kind of bring it back.”
Phil Mickelson, who played the first two rounds with Spieth at the Memorial and is grouped with Spieth again at the U.S. Open, said Spieth is “too good of a putter not to get it back.”
“I would say that Jordan is a great putter that will have occasional moments of poor putting, and those will go away quickly, and he’ll be back to a great putter,” Mickelson said. “Many guys out on Tour are poor putters that have a few moments of great putting. He’s just one of those guys that it will click overnight.”
Perhaps Wednesday evening even.