By Jay Betsill
The Farmers Insurance Open had a stacked field with 12 of the top 26 players in the world in the field at Torrey Pines, but the storyline that dominated the weekend in golf and sports was the return of Tiger Woods.
Woods has 14 major victories, including his most recent (the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines). He has also won the Farmers Insurance Open on seven occasions, but his last PGA Tour start was this event in 2017 where he missed the cut before he withdrew after one round the following week at the Dubai Desert Classic and would not return again until this past December at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.
During an up and down Friday round, Woods powered through to make the cut on the number to play on the weekend on the PGA Tour for the first time since the 2015 Wyndam Championship. That weekend, Woods was in contention until the back nine on Sunday as he was attempting to win and get in the FedEx Cup Playoffs.
While he was not in serious contention this weekend at Torrey Pines, he grinded his way to shooting par or better in all four rounds despite being last in the field in fairways hit.
“I think it was all very positive,” Woods said after Sunday’s round. “The big concern was playing out of the rough. I haven’t played out of rye grass since last year — 12 full months. I wasn’t sure what I was able to do. I hit some shots, very happy about that.
“Unfortunately, I put myself in there,” Woods continued. “Overall, I’m very happy the way I was able to fight out the scores. These weren’t yawners — down the middle, on the green, miss the first one, one-hand the second. These were grinds. I fought hard. It’s nice to see I’m able to still grind.”
Woods is scheduled to return to action in two weeks at the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades near Los Angeles. He has not announced any further events as he sees how his body handles his return to the PGA Tour. Going by his past years, if his health holds up, the likely next two tournaments that we would see Tiger appear in are the Honda Classic near his home in Jupiter, FL and the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill in Orlando.