Curtis Strange: Mickelson’s Open runner-ups ‘disappointing’

The U.S. Open is headed our way very soon, and with it another chance for Phil Mickelson to throw off the last of the monkeys on his back. Can he win the big one? He's come oh so close, finishing in the runner-up slot four times. And that, says ESPN analyst Curtis Strange, has to weigh heavy on Mickelson:

"If I was Phil Mickelson, I would look at five runner ups as very, very disappointing," Strange said. "You have to try to take a positive out of it, but when you have his amount of talent and his ability and his record, you know, not winning when you have a chance to win is disappointing.  And there is no way else to look at it.  I felt for him every time.  But he's had opportunities, and he just hasn't come through.  I think he certainly would look at it as a black eye right now."

Fellow analyst Andy North noted that Mickelson may not have the demeanor of an Open champ: "When you look at a U.S. Open [winner], you think of a guy that plays a little conservative or is able to be consistent or those sort of criteria where with Phil you think of more of the flamboyant, aggressive, swashbuckling‑type of player that he can be.  He can be that other type of player too.  He just hasn't done it enough at an Open."

Man, that's arrogance! These two guys, thinking they know what's best for a guy who's won four majors! That's the problem with the media these days, thinking they know better than the pros --

/checks stats

/realizes these guys have won two U.S. Opens each

//shuts up

Anyway, both of these guys think the key to Mickelson's chances is the flat stick; if he's rolling the ball well, he'll be in the hunt. Accordingly, both believe Steve Stricker is one of the favorites coming into the weekend.

Oh, and Strange says the broadcast crew won't mention Tiger Woods at all, except as regards a record or something similar. Yes, good luck with that.

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