Always happens this way.
Nothing new, this is par for the Tiger Woods course and we’re talking about his 2019 playing schedule.
We’re talking, he is not.
Which means we have to take the WWTD approach — What Will Tiger Do? It isn’t that difficult. First, Woods is cutting back on that mad schedule from 2018 where he opened the throttle all the way in an attempt to climb the world rankings. Mission accomplished.
Despite finishing his own Hero World Challenge in next-to-last place, he’s still a lofty No. 13 — lucky him. He could have cracked the Top 10 had he played better last week down in Albany.
As quickly as you could say “14 majors” Woods was off for the other side of the world, something about scouting Royal Melbourne, site of the 2019 Presidents Cup. Must be some sort of PR requirement because with the U.S. record in the Presidents Cup, it’s sort of silly to have to scout the golf course.
So while Eldrick entertains himself down-under, we’ve taken on the challenge to speculate on his 2019 schedule, so here goes:
January 24: Farmer’s Insurance, Torrey Pines. Yes, he’ll skip the Tournament of Champions. Winds in Hawaii can be quite strong this time of year, he doesn’t need to be fighting those and Maui doesn’t have the type of course that’s going to prepare him for any of the majors.
February 14: Genesis Open, Riviera Country Club in L.A. This one’s a no-brainer, he already confirmed he’s there, after all, his TGR Foundation is the tournament beneficiary.
February 24: WGC-Mexico. The WGC events are back on his radar. Don’t drink the water, Tigh.
March 7: Arnold Palmer Bay Hill Classic. He’s won there so many times we’ve lost count. He’ll skip his hometown Honda Classic and play Bay Hill.
March 14: Players Championship. That’s why he’s skipping the Honda.
March 27: WGC Match Play. The WGC events are back on his radar.
April 11: The Masters. He’ll be one of if not the pre-tournament favorite.
May 2: Wells Fargo. This is his prep for the PGA.
May 16: PGA Championship. He’ll be one of the pre-tournament favorites at Bethpage Black.
May 30: The Memorial. He loves Jack’s place. His prep for the U.S. Open.
June 13: U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. He’ll be one of the pre-tournament favorites — where have we heard that before?
July 4: Irish Open at Lahinch. Don’t be shocked if he uses this European Tour event as his tune-up for The Open Championship.
July 18: The Open Championship at Royal Portrush. He’ll be one of the pre-tournament favorites. Yeah, it’s getting old, isn’t it?
And just like that the major championship season is done. Don’t be surprised is Tiger DOES NOT haul butt back to the states to play in the late July heat in Memphis at the FedEx, even if it is a WGC event.
Then you have the playoffs. Will he play in both the prelude events to the Tour Championship?
August 8: Northern Trust. We say he’ll play.
August 15: BMW at Medinah. He may or may not play, depends on his spot in the FedEx standings. We’ll vote yes.
August 22: Tour Championship. Guess who is the defending champion?
That’s it. Which brings us to that silly Presidents Cup, December 9-15. Woods wants to be a playing captain. The event also messes up his Hero World Challenge. We’ll have to wait and see what they’re going to do with that. It could move to October.
Add ’em all up and that’s 16 events, which is in the ball park for the number Tiger prefers.
Especially at age 43.