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Scottie Scheffler explains how new TaylorMade putter freed him up for success

4 Min Read



    Written by GolfWRX

    Last year, Scottie Scheffler won THE PLAYERS Championship using a putter that he knew well. He had already logged five PGA TOUR victories with his familiar Scotty Cameron Timeless Tourtype GSS putter, and made it six at THE PLAYERS at TPC Sawgrass.

    The relationship between Scheffler and his longtime putter, however, soured throughout the summer, and he began testing and switching into different models and brands nearly every week. Nothing stuck.

    Scheffler went away from his six-time-winning blade putter at the FedEx St. Jude Championship in Memphis, where he debuted a TaylorMade Spider Tour X “SS Proto” mallet putter. The SS Proto had all the makings of a Spider putter, including the dual-winged mallet shape, and True Path white sightline on the crown.

    Where that putter differed from stock Spider Tour putters, however, was a custom-milled face insert and a front-weighted sole design that made the putter perform more like a blade. Although it had the look and head size of a Spider Tour putter, it was designed with forward weighting for Scheffler’s preference.

    The putter only lasted a few weeks before Scheffler switched back to a blade-style putter for the TOUR Championship, but he and the TaylorMade team were close. Maybe closer than they realized at the time.

    Fast-forward to last week at the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard, where Scheffler used a TaylorMade Spider Tour X mallet, which looked quite similar to the SS Proto he debuted in Memphis. It worked. Scheffler led the field in Strokes Gained: Putting on Sunday, and won the tournament by five.

    Scheffler's old TaylorMade Spider Tour X mallet he used in Memphis (top) compared with the new model used to success at Bay Hill (bottom). (Courtesy GolfWRX)

    Scheffler's old TaylorMade Spider Tour X mallet he used in Memphis (top) compared with the new model used to success at Bay Hill (bottom). (Courtesy GolfWRX)

    This new Spider Tour X mallet is different than the previous SS Proto in two important ways. It has TaylorMade’s Pure Roll face insert, rather than the custom milled face, and the sole has dual weights in the back portion.

    This means that, compared to his previous SS Proto version, the new Spider Tour X mallet has more of a back-weighted construction that helps raise MOI (moment of inertia), much like TaylorMade’s stock versions of the putter.

    The sole of Scheffler's new TaylorMade Spider mallet. (Courtesy GolfWRX)

    The sole of Scheffler's new TaylorMade Spider mallet. (Courtesy GolfWRX)

    In general, a putter that has more back weighting helps golfers achieve more consistency on putts struck off-center.

    Scheffler spoke about the previous mallet version, compared to his new putter, in his press conference at THE PLAYERS Championship:

    “I had tried a Spider during the playoffs last year,” he said. “It was a little bit of a different type of Spider than the one I used last week. At times last year I struggled lining the ball up in the middle of the face, so I lined the ball up on the toe sometimes, and I struggled with a tiny bit of a heel strike, and that was just -- you know, just became kind of my miss. Like if I was fighting a duck hook off the tee, I was fighting a little bit of a heel miss with the putter.

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    “This Spider putter is really easy for me to line up,” he continued. “I don't have to use the line on the ball. I line the putter up really well, and I line up in the middle of the face, and pretty much as simple as that. Kind of gives me just a really good visual.”

    Utilizing the visual assistance from the TaylorMade True Path alignment system, with the added forgiveness from the overall head construction, Scheffler found his winning answer. He was fifth in Strokes Gained: Putting for the week at Bay Hill, running away from the field.

    Freed up to engage his inner athlete and focus on the target, rather than the line or the roll of the ball, Scheffler now looks like the dominant player who first ascended to world No. 1 in 2022.

    “It's good for me visually, and I like the way the ball comes off the face,” he said, “and so it's helping me just be more kind of outward with my putting than focusing on what's going on right here, just focusing on the picture of the putt.”

    Scheffler's new TaylorMade Spider mallet with the TaylorMade Pure Roll face insert. (Courtesy GolfWRX)

    Scheffler's new TaylorMade Spider mallet with the TaylorMade Pure Roll face insert. (Courtesy GolfWRX)

    Under the heading of less is more, Scheffler is also using a new putting routine that doesn’t require him to use the line on his ball to line up his putts. The line, he said, was leading to a perfectionism that wasn’t helping.

    “At times I think it got to the point where a ball would go in, but if that ball didn't roll end over end, at the back of your head, you're like, wait, did I hit that putt really good?” Scheffler said. “I think sometimes I expected perfection out of myself, and I'm like that in a lot of different things, so when it comes to the putting, now not using the line just to be more free to not try as hard, which is a heck of a lot easier said than done …

    “It's about sticking to my process and controlling what I can control,” he added, “and that's having a good attitude and hitting a good putt, and not using the line has helped a lot in that.”

    Now, Scheffler isn’t chasing the perfect roll, or trying to find the perfect putter. He’s back to winning, and just in time to defend his title at THE PLAYERS Championship – albeit with a different putter than last year.

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