Welcome to Devil Ball's Proving Ground, where we put the latest golf equipment through its paces. Today we get a chance to look at some of the best new irons out there in the Mizuno MP-59s.
Tester -- Shane Bacon -- Handicap: 1.9
Target golfing audience -- +2 - 13 handicaps
When I first started chatting with the Mizuno people about getting some irons to review, I was excited. The new MP line was coming out and their MP-69s looked exactly like the blades I once had owned in my Titleist 690-MBs. It's true, nobody, not even Tiger Woods, needs to hit blades with the technology out there these days, but having those in the bag is just cool. Sadly, the curse of the southpaw got me, as I was informed the 69s wouldn't be molded lefty.
The disappointed lasted until the box of 59s arrived. A "full cavity forgiveness in a player's half cavity design" as their site informs us, the 59s are exactly what I was looking for. Playing 18 holes with my uncle, the most popular cart partner in my golfing Rolodex, confirmed it. He admitted that carrying these irons would get more of the "player that thinks he needs blades even though he doesn't" group interested, because they're just so darn good looking without all the additions that can make certain irons look clunky.
No golfer will ever say that pulling new clubs out of the box is a bad experience. Getting a new golf club is the spa treatment of the golfing world, and the first impression is always an important thing.
My first thought? Beautiful. They're astonishingly well made, as I've always heard Mizuno irons were, and I was so impressed with the simple look and feel right out of the box that I was disappointed I don't have a local night range in the area.
My old irons were the first generation Titleist AP-2s, a bit larger than the 59s I got in the mail. It might seem like going to a smaller iron would be a tough transition, but I actually started hitting these great right off the bat. The main reason? How easy I felt they setup over the ball.
The other crazy thing? I actually am hitting them about a half-club farther. With my old irons, I would hit a 7-iron about 180, but this one is flying anywhere between 185 and 190. It has taken some getting used to, (mostly mentally convincing myself that "yes, a 7-iron from this distance is the right club") but I was surprised at how long they are.
The thing you need with a good set of irons is something you can mis-hit. A very good playing friend of mine once told me that you hit about three or four GOOD shots a round, so it's really just playing those foul balls all day. That's what makes a decent player good, and a good player great. You have to be able to play your bad shots.
I loved that about these 59s. The mis-hits are workable. Unlike blades, that force you to lotion up your hands after a bad shot, the ball goes just as true when you don't catch it as solid.
As my game continues to deteriorate, that's something I really need, and I'm glad these provide that.
I love them. I love them so much. I've played about five rounds with them and get more comfortable each time. On Monday, out on the golf course, I had a moment where I wanted to "chip" a 9-iron to a distance I could easily hit a pitching wedge. Normally these are the shots I pull, because the swing shortens, you get your weight to the other side quickly, and things break down. With the way these irons lay down, I just put my weight forward, made a soft swing, and BAM, hit the ball to eight-feet.
I couldn't do that with my old irons.
Mizuno MP-59 Rating -- 9 out of 10
Price - $879-$999