No matter what you do for good or for bad, someone can always top it. The last time I golfed was at something called the 19th Laing Invitational, a collection of the worst golfers to ever graduate Providence College. I hit a shot that went backwards. It had to do with undercutting the ball and creating a sinkhole it couldn’t roll out of. I later bragged that no one hit a ball backwards further than me, but a reader challenged that. It seems that Phil Mickelson can. It has to do with his natural ability to create super loft and backspin – yes, a trick shot! Other than the fact that we’re both left-handed, I’ve never been compared to him since.

It’ll be all forward for Lefty this weekend, as the U.S. Open returns to Bethpage Black. While I’ll be pouring seed patch on the divots in my backyard, Mickelson will play his last major before wife Amy has surgery, and he’ll be America’s sympathy favorite. It’s only fitting that Devil Ball Golf starts us off with a reminiscence ten years back, as Mickelson took Payne Stewart to the 18th at Pinehurst on Father’s Day, one day before Amy gave birth to their first child. Kathryn Tappen is looking forward to NYers welcoming Mickelson back for his 16th straight Open.

On The Tee remembers the last time the Open was at Bethpage Black in 2002, when he helped Tiger Woods get dressed. Going For The Green offers a scouting report on the black course, which comes equipped with its own warning sign. Are we scaling mountains here or smacking little white balls around? Hey, Thanks For Playing says Black’s difficulty is like everything else in New York: overrated.

Hooked On Golf will have proof he was at Bethpage, even if he never sniffs the East Coast. Out And Back has the squeegees Mayor Guiliani chased out of Gotham needed over at Bethpage this rain-forecasted weekend. Golf Digest’s Local Knowledge reports those squeegees have already been pressed into service this morning.

Red Sox

Boston Dirt Dogs has all the madness on Red Sox Nation’s 500th consecutive sellout in the 6-1 win over Florida last night, but it does come with an asterisk attached. Justin Masterson is impressed that The Nation has generated the longest non-NBA sellout streak in U.S. pro sports history. Eric Ortiz has the Chicago Bulls at 515 in his cross hairs and says another 500 straight is possible, while Boston Sports Blog casts doubt on the streak that is. However, SoxSpace News exercised some gubernatorial privileges, taking up residence at Fenway during the week and personally vouching for the streak’s authenticity – at least for No. 500.

Toeing The Rubber delights in Wake’s performance on Tuesday night, even as she rips Red Sox wives. The Bottom Line has Wake breathing down Roy Halladay’s neck and canvasses The Nation to make the knucklah their Final Vote selection in this year’s All-Star Game. Over The Monster has Daisuke as this year’s version of 2008 C.C. Sabathia. Fighting Words says Yawkey Way has never been big on official announcements, so just expect a six-man rotation to evolve on its own. SportsCenter 5 Overtime Blog lays out this historic rotation for you. NESN’s Boston Red Sox blog says a six-man rotation is taking the easy way out of dealing with the problem of too much pitching.

When’s the seven-man rotation talk gonna start? It might have to come soon. Full Count has Clay Buchholz getting booed during his outing last night in Pawtucket. Forget seven men, as Hacks With Haggs has Buchholtz wanting to go someplace where he can pitch every five days.

Fire Brand Of The American League praises Theo for building a bullpen, then looks to break it up. Start with Takashi Saito says Wicked Good Sports, who calls the 39 year-old “expendable.”

When it comes to Ortiz’s June turnaround, UmpBump told us so, while Keep Your Sox On has Big Papi not telling us anything.

Ever watch Comcast SportsNet on Friday and hear about Felger getting his beauty rest for Saturday’s The Baseball Show? Apparently, as Tanguay’s Take can attest, it’s still not enough.

Patriots / Celtics

It Is What It Is remembers Patriot great Jim Nance on the 17th anniversary of his passing. Blogging Fearlessly has the Hall at Patriot Place looking for a few good men . . . provided they’re from South Dakota.

Pats Pulpit presents Commissioner Goodell’s conundrum in weighing Donte Stallworth’s suspension. On NFL Insider Report, Tom Curran is trying to figure out what makes Julius Peppers tick.

Green Scene interprets Danny Ainge’s Big Three contract manipulations as a sign that LeBron is coming to Boston. Celtics Stuff Live doesn’t like either the Kendrick Perkins or Bill Walker components of the rumored trade with Memphis involving the No. 2 pick. Not surprisingly, Perk Is A Beast reacts violently to the rumors concerning their namesake.

To all the dads out there, may your weekend be far-removed from honey-do lists . . . and may all your shots roll forward.


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