It used to be the Crosby Clambake — and it was one of the most popular stops on the PGA Tour.
Today, it is the Pebble Beach Pro-Am with a corporate name attached to it, as are most stops on the PGA Tour. And the field at this year’s offspring of what simply used to be called “The Crosby” features a watered-down professional field with a smattering of B-list celebrities.
Tom Hoge returns as defending champion and he picked up his first career win at Pebble last year. He’s back but chances are good that some winless player might step up on Sunday.
There are a few names — No. 10 Matt Fitzpatrick, the reigning U.S. Open champion — is the highest-ranked player in the field followed by No. 11 Viktor Hovland and No. 15 Jordan Spieth, who is a brand ambassador for the title sponsor — AT&T.
Last year, Hoge was tied for the 54-hole lead. He made birdies on three of his final five holes and jumped into the lead after Spieth bogeyed the 17th. He won by two over Spieth.
Over the years, big names in the field have become increasingly sparse. Uncertain weather on the Monterey Peninsula and slow pace of play with a plethora of amateurs in the field have added to the reasons not to be there.
The field still plays a three-course rotation — Pebble Beach, Monterey Peninsula Country Club and breathtaking Spyglass Hill.
Phillips, Sliverman Wins First Two Korn Ferry Tour Stops:
Chandler Phillips and Ben Silverman are the first two winners of the new Korn Ferry Tour season.
Phillips won the season opener two weeks ago at the Exhuma Classic in the Bahamas. Ben Silverman won the Abacoa Classic last week in a playoff with Cody Blick.
The KFT heads to Club de Golf Panama this week for the Panama Classic.