CHASKA, Minn. – When he saw John Daly, all Tim Herron could do was hang his head and shake it slowly.
It had nothing to do with the wild, purple and every-other-color pants that Daly wore, but everything to do with a sure signal that Herron would not earn a spot into the 91st PGA Championship. Herron, a Minnesota native who some felt deserved a special invite, was second alternate to start the day, but moved to No. 1 when Paul Casey withdrew and Tim Petrovic got in.
It prompted Herron to arrive early at Hazeltine, but all he did was pace the grounds and slowly watch group after group go off. Having watched all 78 players in the morning wave go, Herron kept tabs of the afternoon groups and might have thought he had a chance with the 12:55 group, given that Daly had talked openly of his frustrations a week ago.
But when Daly walked past Herron, it was as if the curtain had been drawn. Sure, there were plenty more groups to go, but Herron didn’t hold out much hope. Good thing, too, because all players were present and accounted for.
All that was bad enough, but to add insult to injury, as Herron walked to his car in the parking lot, he discovered that he couldn’t find his car keys. Then, a voice barked out, “Hey, Lumpy, how’d you play?”
Snapped Herron, “I didn’t.”
If he thought his evening would be better, Herron was wrong. That’s because a double-bogey, double-bogey finish left Daly at 78 and he promptly did what he does so frequently: He withdrew.
Herron had a right to scream.