What is the most important club in your golf bag? The driver? The putter? Sure, those are two very important sticks for getting yourself into the fairway and then knocking the ball into the hole. But the most vital club in your arsenal may well be your wedge, whether it be a pitching wedge or one for use around the green.
They call wedges “scoring clubs” for a reason. From 110 yards and in, a wedge or varying degrees of loft gets us onto the green and, hopefully, close to the pin. Want to be a better putter? Spend more time with a wedge in your hands around the practice green. It’s simple math and law of averages that if you are chipping the ball within three or four feet of the hole instead of 10 to 15 you are going to make more putts and lower your scores.
Even Tour pros miss the green about a third of the time. What they do far better than any amateur golfer is get “up and down” to save par on par-fours and par-threes, or make birdie on par-fives. And being able to get up and down from a sand bunker is an enormous confidence booster for a recreational player, in addition to saving at least a stroke on the hole.
Today’s wedges have been fine tuned and equipped with an assortment of design elements to help us get closer to the flag. Bridgestone’s wedges have an updated micro milling pattern for more spin and control. Cleveland employs a cavity design as opposed to a blade design, allowing engineers to reposition more than 70 grams of weight to the perimeter of the clubhead to maximize forgiveness. Ping’s loft-specific Precision Milled Grooves optimize compression and spin characteristics for nearly identical performance in wet and dry conditions. And TaylorMade’s new ZTP-17 grooves on its wedges create maximum spin for greater stopping ability.
It’s all about customization when it comes to golf clubs. The wedge is no different. Test and then choose the wedge that is right for your ability and needs, whether it be standing in the fairway looking to get it close and make birdie, or near the green facing a difficult chip to a pin tucked over a sand trap.
Let’s check out today’s hottest wedges.