- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
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- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Anonymous Pro: I have about four nominees, but the 15th is probably the weakest hole. Guys will hit three-wood, pitching wedge. That's not very interesting.
Garrity: Nobody agrees with me, but I don't care much for the par-3 17th. The tee is low, and so is the green. Plus the sky and ocean make it so horribly backlit that you're practically playing the hole blind.
Van Sickle: My favorite spot is standing by the 6th green. You're on that massive headland, looking down over the bay in one direction, the 7th hole in another. You feel as if you're on top of the world.
Shipnuck: Me, too. That walk up the hill to the 6th green is the most spectacular in golf. I love the 6th hole and the anticipation of number 7.
Garrity: You have to like number 10, running above the beach. Even though a seagull dragged my sandwich out of the cart the last time I played there.
Bamberger: I love the 11th tee on the far corner of the course. You tumble down that cliff and the dunes, and you're in the village of Carmel. It reminds you of a feeling you get at St. Andrews of playing away from town on the way out, then back toward it on the way in. You're so far away from the commotion of the Lodge and the 1st tee. It's simply you and the ocean swells. You're trying to hit a ball in the wind; you feel like an insignificant speck.
Van Sickle: The U.S. Open is the last stand for the 18-hole playoff. For or against?
Shipnuck: I had always been a detractor, but the Kenny Perry--Ángel Cabrera--Chad Campbell playoff at the  Masters clinched it for me that 18 holes is the way to go. Perry got mud on his ball, so he says, on that last hole, and his approach shot flew way left. You play 72 holes to identify the best player, you get mud on the ball and make one mediocre swing and it's all over.
Garrity: Billy Payne would like me to pass along that golf balls do not pick up mud at Augusta National, sir.