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Block Party

Block Party

I mowed the grass and tuned in for the final round. I watched Brooks Koepka win the Wanamaker Trophy — his fifth career major crown. The guy is a stud. Athletic and talented. But I wasn’t there just for him. Another star emerged this past weekend. Michael Block stole ALL the headlines. The 46-year-old TEACHING pro was the Cinderella story of this year’s PGA Championship. It gave us golf fans goosebumps.

Block turned some heads. It was a magical weekend for the Southern CA native. A club pro that relates to everyone. He gives lessons to earn his income. He not only made the cut, but he was in contention. Block was beating many of the world’s top-ranked professionals. He was actually one shot from the lead on Friday. He started in the top ten for his final round Sunday. It was incredible. Then Michael got to the back nine of a major. What unfolded was simply STUPENDOUS. It will never be duplicated. Unreal. You cannot even dream of it.

Michael Block reached the 15th tee. He wasn’t going to win, but the large crowds were still supporting him. The tricky 152-yard par 3 was giving everyone fits. Block made a few bogeys, and he was looking for some redemption. He grabbed a 7 and gave it a healthy swing. The place went absolutely bananas. His ball flew into the hole. A slam dunk. An ace in the final round of the 2023 PGA Championship. The TV coverage was fantastic. Block didn’t see what happened. Playing partner Rory McIlroy gave him a hug. The TEACHING pro still had no idea. Bedlam.

“Michael stands up and hits this lovely little draw,” McIlroy explained. “The wind held it perfectly, and the ball went straight into the hole. Incredible golf shot under those circumstances. The crowds and the support for him would rival the Tigers. When it’s your week, it’s your week.”

Michael Block didn’t stop there. He was on cloud 9, but perhaps he could get to 10. Block somehow kept his composure, but he ran into trouble on the 18th. A poor tee ball and a pulled second found Michael in the gallery well short of the green. It was like a scene from Rocky. It took ten minutes to get the rowdy crowd away from his ball. NO WAY. NO WAY was he going to get this ball up and down. Michael short-sided himself. Awful lie. No room to work with. But again. He rose to the occasion. Block somehow found the green — another incredible shot — leaving him a slippery 8-footer for par. Michael saw the line. His ball slowly turned and found the bottom. The ovation and roars were off the charts. Again, it gave me goosebumps. You couldn’t write a better script.

Block signed for a 71 on Sunday. It was good for 15th place in this major tournament. Block’s finish was the best from a TEACHING professional since 1986. He not only made the cut, but Michael also won $230,000. Block is definitely trending. With his finish, he automatically qualified for next year’s championship. His newfound popularity also netted him sponsor exemptions to play this week and the RBC Canadian Open. More are coming. The entire world changed for him during this PGA Championship.

Michael Block is beyond cool. An average day Joe. The long-time pro at a public course in Mission Viejo, CA, speaks his mind and steers clear of cliches. He is full of spunk. He has the gift of gab, and he has a very relatable swagger. A real-life TIN CUP. A folk hero. A star. He is very appreciative of the support, and he is living the dream. ALL of his post-round interviews were spectacular. He cried every time he was on LIVE television. His impressive play won the crowds. But his unvarnished enthusiasm and love for the game won him millions of new fans. His cell phone is blowing up.

Block is a great story. He inspires us all. I don’t know what the future will bring. But I wanted to applaud him. This was a fantastic weekend for golf. Heck. Jensen and I have even been to the course three times because. Yes. Brooks Koepka won the tournament. But I have a feeling that he finished in second place. Great stuff. Cheers.