Keep that card
Englishman Justin Rose hasn’t finished in the top 10 at the U.S. Open since 2007. But the No. 5 golfer in the world played like it Friday. He made birdie on the first two holes and was one of only three golfers to shoot in the 60s with a 1-under-par 69 that included pars in nine of his final 10 holes. That followed Thursday’s first round, in which Rose rose to 4 over par before making birdie in three of his final five holes.
Toss that card
Angel Cabrera won’t be appearing in a second consecutive playoff at a major championship. El Pato, who won his 2007 U.S. Open at the other end of Pennsylvania at Oakmont Country Club, shot an 11-over 81 that included a triple-bogey 8 on the fourth hole. Some consolation: At 15 over for two rounds, he was a stroke better than fellow former Open champion Jim Furyk, whose back-nine meltdown at the Olympic Club cost him last year’s tournament.
On the course with ...
It was an eventful two days for Carl Pettersson. A day after he wore exactly the same outfit as playing partner Francesco Molinari, the Swede, still completing his first round Friday morning, was starting his backswing with an iron on the fairway of the fifth hole when another ball — a stray tee shot off No. 2 by Brandon Crick — collided with his own, knocking it next to his feet. Pettersson was allowed to return his ball to where it was and made par. “Luckily I wasn’t in my downswing because I would have missed the ball,” Pettersson said. “I don’t know what the ruling would have been on that.” He shot 72 in the first round and 75 in the second to finish the first two days at 7 over.
U.S. Open moment
The rain has led to a muddy experience for fans at Merion, sparing not even Lindsey Vonn. The native Minnesotan, Olympic gold medalist and girlfriend of Tiger Woods posted online a photo of her from the knees down standing ankle-deep in the soupy muck, as well as a video of various muddy shoes and boots she wore following Woods around the course.
2010 British Open Louis Oosthuizen withdrew before his tee time because of a hip injury. The South African strained a hip flexor while shooting a 5-over 75 in the first round. Oosthuizen said the problem affected his swing to the point that he was advised he risked further damage if he kept playing.
The Queen is calling
Speaking of former British Open champions, 1999 winner Paul Lawrie shot 71 and appears likely to play the weekend a 7 over. After his round, the Scotsman also found out he was among those selected for the Order of the British Empire in Queen Elizabeth’s Birthday Honors. Lawrie was recognized for his foundation that helps pay for kids to get into sports. “It’s a huge honor,” Lawrie said.
Quote of the day
“I don’t think I’ve played worse for 36 holes. So it definitely [ranks] toward the bottom. But I’ll be honest with you. [Near misses at] Oakmont, Winged Foot and the Olympic Club were far more disappointing. I felt like I got kicked in the stomach for all three of those, to lose by a shot or two when I could have won.” — Jim Furyk, a Philadelphia-area native who shot 79 in Round 2 to miss the cut for only the third time in 19 appearances at the U.S. Open.
Tweet of the day
“You still can’t tell from Dufner’s expression whether he hit a good shot or a bad shot. However, he threw his club in the creek.” — Former Sports Illustrated writer Max Adler, watching Jason Dufner on the fourth hole. He retrieved the club.
With the second round not over, the cut still needs to be determined; the top 60 players and ties will continue to play Saturday, and the mark began the day at plus-8, where Dustin Johnson, Brandt Snedeker and Martin Kaymer sit. On television, NBC (Ch. 11) takes over for the entire weekend, with Saturday’s coverage beginning at 11 a.m.