What they said: Briny Baird

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November 09, 2010
PGA TOUR staff

MORE INTERVIEWS: Children's Miracle Network Classic transcript archive

PHIL STAMBAUGH: We welcome Briny Baird into the interview room. Briny, return to the Children's Miracle Network Classic. Obviously a big week for you. Just some opening comments about coming here.

BRINY BAIRD: It's a great place to come play. Obviously I don't think I'm up here because it's a great place to play.

Obviously being 126 on the Money List is not an enviable position to be. About the only thing I can say about it is it's better than being 127, or worse.

Gotta play well this week. If not, I've gotta come back here in two weeks, and that's pretty much my main motivation to play well this week is to not have to come back in two weeks, for the simple fact that it takes I gotta stay tournament ready for two more weeks, and you get less time in the off season, less time to shut it down, less time doing fun things with your family. I got three kids that would love to do all kinds of things besides watch me play golf.

So that's my motivation to play well this week. If I play well this week, great; if I don't, it's by far not the end of the world. So I'm going to leave it at that.

PHIL STAMBAUGH: Can you maybe just talk about your year to this point?

BRINY BAIRD: It hasn't been very good. Probably the main if I could point the finger anywhere, I'd point the finger at, first, my wife, she's been real mean; my caddy is terrible. But in reality, I just haven't hit it very good and I think that's the bottom line.

I don't look at stats until the year is over, so if you know the stats, don't spit them out yet. Wait till the tournament's over.

But I know my ball striking, which typically for me is the strength of my game, has not been very good. And I can feel it. It's not something that's new. I can feel it when I'm hitting the shots.

Feels like it's getting better. If that translates into a good four days of golf this week, great. If it doesn't, I'm going to keep working at it to not get better for this week, not get better for TOUR school, but just play more consistent and hit it better for the remainder of my career.

PHIL STAMBAUGH: Okay. Steve?

Q. (Indiscernible) money for Orange County National?

BRINY BAIRD: Absolutely.

Q. You've had pretty good luck here intermittently over the years. I want to say, what, 28 for nine holes on The Palm side at one point??

BRINY BAIRD: Yeah.

Q. So I mean you got that going for you.

BRINY BAIRD: Uh huh.

Q. It's not awful.

BRINY BAIRD: No. Absolutely. Totally. I remember it every time I come back and play the golf course. It wasn't so much the 28 that I remember. I remember making an eagle and after the eagle making seven birdies in a row.

Yeah. That was good. That was really good. I need a couple of runs like that this week would be nice.

Q. Can you still have fun with the family this week at Disney with everything that's going on with the course??

BRINY BAIRD: It won't be as much fun this week as normal because about the only way we're going to see each other is going to be through Skype. They are at home.

Two hours away, it's just last year when I played here, I remember we just had so much going on, I remember telling my wife, I was like, we need to rethink this whole Disney tournament stuff. I was like we live two hours away. We can come up on our own. It just didn't make any sense to come up for the week during a tournament when we can come up any week. And I'm like, what are we doing? We're coming up for the week because we got free Disney passes? If I play well, I think we can afford the Disney passes.

Q. Do you try to put that out of your mind or will you be checking the things every day at the end of the day??

BRINY BAIRD: What's that?

Q. The Money List.

BRINY BAIRD: No. Actually I haven't looked at the Money List one time. I know exactly where I stand, but there's nothing beneficial that can come from that. I think the only thing I'll look at is we tend to look at the negative, and nothing I'm not going to look at it being positive, like, oh, wow, I'm only this far back or I'm this far clear of the 127 guy or what if that guy plays good. Not much good comes from it, looking at that list right now.

Q. Have you ever played out of the 126 to 150 category out here??

BRINY BAIRD: Yeah. Uh huh.

Q. How many starts did you get? Which year do you remember?

BRINY BAIRD: I finished 126 on the Money List in 2005. So in 2006 I played out of that category. I know I played 25 tournaments, but that was before Doral turned into a WGC, so the guy there gave me a sponsor exemption, and Honda gave me one. So maybe I would have gotten in 23, and I played fine that year playing with unlimited starts and I kept my card that way.

Q. Is the aura of death and dismemberment for the guys that are 126 a little overstated??

BRINY BAIRD: I think it's tremendously overstated.

Q. You guys get a ton of starts out of that category.

BRINY BAIRD: The only way it's not understated is if I continue to play the way I've played this year where I've played, I don't know, you guys probably know how many tournaments I've played, probably around 30.

If I play next year like I play this year, I'm not going to sniff finishing in the Top 125. So that's where it sounds like death, but if you play the way you know you're capable of playing, 15 to 20 tournaments should be enough.

Q. That's it? Wow.

BRINY BAIRD: Should have played more.

PHIL STAMBAUGH: All right. We all done?

Q. What was your situation when you finished 126? I take it you probably played here and Tampa, whatever was last that year.

BRINY BAIRD: Yeah. No, we played the tournament, the last tournament was supposed to be Tampa. They had the tropical storm or whatever went through Mississippi, so they canceled the tournament, and I wish they'd just canceled it for the whole year because we had to go back and play. I was 125 going into the final event, made the cut and got passed by somebody and finished

Q. You were inside the number??

BRINY BAIRD: I was on I was the guy.

Q. You were 125??

BRINY BAIRD: I was 125, made the cut and still missed out by I'm not sure how much. $2,493, I think. Not that I know exactly how much it was.

Q. So the most beneficial thing for being inside the number is a little more concrete idea of where you're going to play??

BRINY BAIRD: Yeah. I'm not going to downplay it. There's a significant difference. I mean you're going to get in, you know you get to pick and choose your tournaments, and that's huge. But the reality is you're still playing out of that 126 to 150. You have a tremendous advantage being the 126 guy as opposed to the 150 guy. The 14 spots is huge.

Q. (Indiscernible)?(Indiscernible)?

BRINY BAIRD: 24 spots actually. Yeah. And you never that number never reshuffles, so it does make a big difference how close you are to that 125 guy does make a big difference.

But like I said, if you play well I know if I play well given 18 to 20 starts next year, if I play the way I know I'm capable of playing, that's going to be plenty of starts.

And also, if it's not, it's not. The great thing about this sport is there's room for a select number of people. I mean you're talking this is the cream of the crop. This is the best players in the world playing on the PGA TOUR, and you have to put up every year.

I've still not been able to sign a three or four year guarantee deal out here that allows me to play out here. And that's what I think people sometimes fail to realize is that these guys that are playing out here are putting up every single week. You're seeing the best players in the world playing their absolute best. There are no breaks. It's awesome.

And on the other side to it, I'll tell you this, though. There's probably 200 guys that have access to the PGA TOUR; and when I say access, guys that'll play 15 or more events. You only have to beat 75 guys. So to look at it in a positive way, you really don't have to beat that many guys.

I think the hardest thing out on the PGA TOUR is getting on the PGA TOUR. It's not staying on the PGA TOUR. At least that's my take on it.

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