PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. -- All of a sudden, defending champion Aaron Baddeley has put himself in contention again.
The Aussie, who started the third round at even par, birdied his final three holes on Saturday for a 66 that puts him at 5 under for the tournament. He's one shot behind Phil Mickelson, who has played 10 holes, and tied right now with Dustin Johnson, Bryce Molder, Zack Johnson, Keegan Bradley and Jonathan Byrd -- all of whom are still on the course.
Baddeley closed with a roller-coaster of a 32 on the back nine that included five birdies, one bogey and just three pars. The bogey came when Baddeley couldn't get up-and-down from the greenside bunker at No. 15. He responded by draining a 33-footer at the next hole, lobbing his third shot on the par-5 17th to 13 inches and made a final putt from 3 feet at the 18th.
Baddeley's birdie at the 18th hole was just the fifth of the day.
Aaron Baddeley's efficiency and consistency on the greens has made the putter the most dangerous club in his bag.
PGATOUR.COM will be streaming interviews live from the media center at Riviera.
Tuesday, Feb. 14
Sergio Garcia - 3:30 p.m. ET
Kyle Stanley - 6 p.m. ET
Ernie Els - 7 p.m. ET
Wednesday, Feb. 15
Fred Couples - 12:30 p.m. ET
Phil Mickelson - 12:45 p.m. ET
Patrick Cantlay - 1 p.m. ET
Andy Walker and Jason Gore - 2 p.m. ET
Luke Donald - 3 p.m. ET
Adam Scott - 3:30 p.m. ET
Aaron Baddeley - 5:30 p.m. ET
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Bubba Watson's General Lee has gotten plenty of publicity in the three weeks since he bought the car made famous by the "Dukes of Hazzard."
The orange Dodge Charger even landed its own parking space this week in the past champions lot at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.
Several spaces down, though, another classic has been attracting some attention. It's a red 1968 Fastback Mustang with white racing stripes that belongs to the 2007 champion, Aaron Baddeley.
Baddeley, who lives about five minutes from TPC Scottsdale, has driven the car to the course each of the last two days. Baddeley bought the car in Australia and he and his dad spent about five years restoring it.
"We tried to keep the old feel about it," Baddeley said. "We kept it very simple on the inside -- no radio. We put a Cleveland 351 engine in there and it's got about 500 horses."
The best part? It's probably the white lettering on the passenger side of the car near the front wheel.
"It's great," the Aussie said. "It's got ‘Badds’ on the side which is pretty cool. We tried to keep it original ... yet make it sort of unique for myself."
Baddeley, who shot 67 on Friday and will start the third round at 3 under, also has a Ford F150 truck and a Pontiac GTO RA6.
"I sort of go between the three," he said. "I definitely enjoy driving (the Mustang). I just started getting comfortable driving it now -- just breaking it in and getting a feel for it. It drives so different because it's an old car."
Today's grouping features five players who know what it takes to win on the PGA TOUR.
Below is a link to each of the 5 players who were revealed on Saturday. PGATOUR.COM will countdown the players for the rest of December, with No. 1 unveiled on Dec. 30.
Be sure to check out this year’s new addition of the Three Wise Men – Chris DiMarco, Arron Oberholser and Craig Perks, who offer their takes on each of the players on the list.
Let’s us know how you think these players will perform in 2012 and whether we ranked ‘em too high, too low or just right.
MELBOURNE, Australia -- In arguably his finest individual performance in months, Tiger Woods beat Aaron Baddeley 4 and 3 to give the United States the Presidents Cup.
Woods blasted out of a greenside bunker to a foot for a conceded birdie that would give the U.S. the win for the second straight Presidents Cup. The win was assured after Baddeley was unable to hole his chip for a halve to extend the match.
With the performance, Woods silenced the critics who questioned Couples' using a Captain's Pick on the former world No. 1. Woods was 5 under through 15 holes as he made six birdies.
Woods took the lead in the match with consescutive birdies on Nos. 5 and 6. He never trailed and eventually built a 5-up lead with a par at the 13th before Baddeley birdie the next to take the match to the decisive final hole.
Tiger Woods rolls in a 20-footer for birdie on the par-4 fourth hole.
MELBOURNE, Australia – Tiger Woods has just made his first birdie of the Presidents Cup.
The curving 24-footer at the fourth hole was more than just a morale boost – it gave Woods and Dustin Johnson a 1-up advantage over Aaron Baddeley and Jason Day. Woods celebrated by stabbing at the air with his right fist as the putt dropped.
Woods and Steve Stricker did not make a birdie during Thursday’s opening Foursomes. The Americans lost 7 and 6 -- tying for the shortest match in Presidents Cup history -- to Adam Scott and K.J. Choi.
MELBOURNE, Australia – Having already won The Presidents Cup 13 years ago at Royal Melbourne, and with a team consisting of five Australians and players in good form and familiar with the course, the International team has been pegged by many as the favorite this week.
But Aaron Baddeley, one of those five Australians, thinks it just the opposite. After all, that win here in 1998 remains the only International win in this event.
“If you look at the records, USA have pretty much dominated The Presidents Cup and I think we definitely come in here as underdogs, even though we feel we have a bit of an advantage with the golf course,” Baddeley said Wednesday.
“Obviously you've got five Aussies and it helps, but I still think we are underdogs.”
Baddeley will be paired with fellow Aussie Jason Day in Match 3 for Thursday’s foursomes. They’ll take on the American pair of Matt Kuchar and Dustin Johnson.
Baddeley and Day are the only two Aussies playing together on Thursday.
“We are both going to be nervous,” Baddeley said. “We are both going to be excited to get out there and we both want to do well.
“I think it will be good. Even though we are both young, we both have played in big events and know how to handle those and use them in a positive way.”
The four Captain’s Picks for this year’s Presidents Cup were announced Tuesday afternoon.
U.S. Captain Fred Couples selected FedExCup champion Bill Haas to go with his earlier announced pick of Tiger Woods.
International Captain Greg Norman selected two Australians, Robert Allenby and Aaron Baddeley.
What do you think of the Captain’s Picks?
By Mike McAllister, PGATOUR.COM
ATLANTA -- Aaron Baddeley will have a possible FedExCup when he tees off in Sunday's final round of the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. But his main concern will be on something else -- winning the tournament and perhaps a spot in this year's Presidents Cup, to be held in his native Australia in November.
Baddeley's in good position to achieve a lot of things thanks to his 6-under 64, the low round of the day at East Lake on Saturday. He's tied with Hunter Mahan for the 54-hole lead and will play in the final twosome.
First and foremost, he knows winning the tournament will go a long way in impressing International captain Greg Norman, who will make his two Captain's Picks on Tuesday.
"So much as got to go right for me to win the FedExCup," said Baddeley, who entered the week 27th in points but currently projects to third. "So for me, I just want to try and win the TOUR Championship, which is a great event, a prestigious event, and then try and impress Greg in the process."
Earlier this week, Baddeley spoke briefly with Norman, who told him he would be closing watching both Baddeley and fellow Australian John Senden, last week's runner-up of the BMW Championship
While Baddeley shares a spot atop the leaderboard, Senden is 12 strokes behind and tied for 24th.
"He said just go out, play good, win the golf tournament," Baddeley said of his conversation with Norman. "I said, all right."
Baddeley was more than all right on the greens Saturday. He rolled in four birdie putts between 21 and 36 feet, and also had a par-saving putt from outside 10 feet. He gained more than five strokes on the field just on the greens, and he leads the field this week in Strokes Gained-Putting.
“In recent months, I haven’t holed that many putts,” Baddeley said, “so it was nice to be able to make some putts.”
Baddeley said he worked on his right-hand grip this week, and when he takes a practice stroke, he's using only his right hand.
"It's just getting the club in the right position with my right hand, and that allows me to be able to release it, release the putter head," Baddeley explained.
Whether his performance this week will be enough to convince Norman to choose him, Baddeley won't know until Tuesday. But a win on Sunday will be hard to ignore.
"Definitely Greg is looking out for form players," he said. "So far I think I've had a nice year, but it would be nice to cap it off this week, and hopefully that'll be enough for the pick."