Open interview: Alex Aragon

October 10, 2013

MORE INTERVIEWS: Open transcripts archive

Q. Talk about your thoughts on your chances when you woke up this morning.

ALEX ARAGON: I had resigned myself to zero.

Q. Really?

I know it's happened probably more often than I would remember or know of, but I had already come to terms with not getting to play.

I guess I got to send John Merrick a little gift basket.

Q. He had some medical...

I have no idea why. I am assuming he was hurt because I saw him out here, but then they told me he didn't want to play in the Pro‑am.

I been asking every day, has anyone heard, anyone thinking about withdrawing? They were like, No, sorry. I was first alternate an Monday.

They called me at like 9:00 in the morning. I was first alternate, so to have not gotten in my the time the tournament started, I was actually surprised.

Once Monday and Tuesday came and went and I didn't get in, you just pretty much have to wait for an injury, I guess.

Q. When did you find out? Where were you?

I was eating breakfast. It was like 6:45 and they told me I was on the tee at 7:50. It was actually fortunate and a perfect tee time for me, too, because had it been earlier I wouldn't have had any warmup time, and then obviously afternoon I would've been sitting around all day.

Q. Is there a lesson to take out of this that maybe you were more relaxed than you would have been if you were thinking about it all week?

I don't know. I was trying to prepare as if I was going to play, so I don't know if there is any particular lesson. It was a good round. I got off to a bad start and brought it back around. It was fun. I played pretty well today.

Q. First tour event?

No. I was on tour on '06. I don't know how many Mondays I got by 10. Quite a few.

Q. What's your history here or going to Stanford?

With this course? I did play first stage of U.S. Open qualifying in Stanford. I played nine holes on Tuesday. Never even saw the back nine.

Q. Did you get through the (indiscernible).

I did. I made it through, yeah. Like four of our guys from our team made it. Other than that, nothing really. It's a little far for us to drive down here. Great course.

Q. Is it kind of weird that you're almost wishing that someone gets sick or hurt so you get your chance?

Yeah, you can't do that. You don't wish anything‑‑ you don't really think about the reason why you get to get in. Obviously just hopeful to get to play.

You don't really go against anyone out here for the sake of karma. Too superstitious to do anything like that.

Q. Do you know James Hahn very well?

I think it was John Merrick. I know John a little bit. Not great. I saw that Tim Wilkinson got in also. Amazing.

Q. Hahn was food poisoning.

Wow. They told me when I got in that John Merrick had withdrawn.

Q. So he's the guy.

That's whose spot I took. Yeah, it's unfortunate for those guys. Everyone wants to play. This new format is kind of weird.
The discussions I had with the guys at the PGA TOUR, they were not expecting this kind of turnout for the field.

Q. When you were first alternate on Monday, are you thinking, why didn't they have 144?

No, I was thinking that in Jacksonville at the end of the Tour. I was pretty upset actually. Doesn't make sense why wouldn't have it 144. I mean, two tee times off two tees, so ...

I think it's just a terrible mistake by them. No reason for one the guys from the to not get a chance to play.

The way it works, people say, Oh, you have your tour card. It doesn't work that way. You need your starts because you need to make money so you can you can get into the tournaments, otherwise you don't have as many chances as you deserve to make your money.
Yeah, I hope in the future that they are able to make these tournaments 144. I wouldn't have gotten in ‑‑ I still don't think I would get in to any of the tournaments with 4 off my number. I would probably need the same thing to happen where I start week out by a certain amount and then withdrawals ‑‑ I mean, I'll probably get in Mexico, but the next‑‑ Vegas I would be out by a lot, not even close, and I don't think I would be in the one in (indiscernible).

So, yeah, I hope that they readdress that situation and make it 44 for sure. Because there are 10 guys that are get their card out of the way that ‑‑ as it turns out, it's all the guys.

There are a lot of mistakes I think that came out of this situation, but it's to be expected in the first time go round. So I'm sure it'll be improved as the years go on.

Q. How would you characterize your emotions looking forward to the next round? Charged up? Just ready to roll?

Yeah, great. Got to do a little work on my driver. Haven't been driving the ball well at all. I was smart with where I missed it all day today kind of, except for on one hole I hit to the in junk.

Yeah, just taking it easy. It's the 23rd or something tournament I've played this year, so doesn't feel like the first event of the year where you're really excited to start playing. Just feels like I'm continuing on from what I was just doing, just for ten times the money.

Yeah, obviously very excited and looking forward to trying to get another good round in.