Play It Forward: Aug. 5-11 on your calendar — You make the call on how the leader of the PGA Championship will go into the lake at 15

You have this to look forward to … or away from:

THIS WEEK’S BEST BET:

The 15th hole at Oak Hill Country Club near Rochester, N.Y., awaits your decision.

The 15th hole at Oak Hill Country Club near Rochester, N.Y., awaits your decision.

GOLF: 95th PGA CHAMPIONSHIP, at Rochester, N.Y., Thursday-Sunday:
Jack Nicklaus thought it would be kinda nifty to push the PGA into let anyone with access to a computer vote online to determine the hole location for the par-3 15th at Oak Hill Country Club – the spot that’ll be used during the final round of this season-ending major. There are four choices at www.picktheholechallenge.pga.com. None, unfortunately, includes planting the flag into that nearby lake.
13_CH_ROCKER_P200Ian Baker-Finch, an analyst for TNT during this event, says Oak Hill is already is “one of the most difficult championship course played today,” and says the best holes to watch are the stretch of 13, 14 and 15. “This will be a pivotal area of the course – a long par-5, a drivable par 4 and an impossible par 3.” Made worse, supposedly, by the whims of those who know how to use a mouse.  Whatever spot picked, it’ll probably give Tiger Woods something else to complain about. He played a practice round at the course last week and wasn’t impressed with the greens. “They just don’t have a lot of grass on them,” he said. So what’s the issue?
damage_hurricanesandy_treesdown_304.ashxOne reason has to do with the fact Oak Hill had a severe thunder storm last month that flooded seven holes, damaged bunkers and caused a tree to fall on the eighth green. This event notorious for allowing someone to come out of nowhere to win it, so even Woods with his four PGA Championships (’99, ’00, ’06 and ’07) must admit could easily be blindsided on this track, the site of the PGA Championship in 2003 and a former host to the Ryder Cup (’95) and three U.S. Opens (’56, ’68 and ’89). Defending champion Rory McIlroy is in, as are current major winners Adam Scott, Justin Rose and Phil Mickelson.
TNT has coverage during all four rounds: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 8-11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. CBS has coverage Saturday and Sunday (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

THE BEST OF THE REST:MONDAY

MLB: DODGERS at ST. LOUIS, 4 p.m., Channel 9, ESPN:
The 14-game road winning streak is bound to end. Given, the latest odds posted at VegasInsider.com have the Dodgers as the 5-to-1 co-favorites to win the World Series. The other co-fav? St. Louis. Although that could take a hit as Yadier Molina, the Cardinals All-Star catcher third in the National League with a .330 batting average, continues to rehab a bad knee. Clayton Kershaw, with his MLB-best 1.87 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 6.1 WAR, starts on Tuesday.
The series continues:
Tuesday, 5:15 p.m., Prime
Wednesday, 5:15 p.m., Prime, ESPN
Thursday, 5:15 p.m., Prime

MLB: ANGELS vs. TEXAS, Angel Stadium, 7:05 p.m., FSW:
Swept a week ago in Arlington, Tex., each by walk-off homers, has to still linger. We’ll see if Nelson Cruz is allowed to play this time, though. Cruz has 25 career homers against the Angels, his most against any opponent.
The series continues:
Tuesday and Wednesday, 7:05 p.m., FSW

TUESDAY

NBA: 2013-14 SCHEDULE ANNOUNCEMENT, 3 p.m., NBA TV:
When do the Houston Rockets come to L.A. to face the Lakers? Not on Christmas Day, is it?

WEDNESDAY

SOCCER:  GUINNESS INTERNATIONAL CHAMPIONS CUP, final: Real Madrid vs. Chelsea, 6 p.m., at Miami:
Tip a dark-brewed Irish beer back if you must.
Also: Third place game: Galaxy vs. AC Milan, 3:30 p.m. in Miami
Seventh and fifth-place games are 3:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. Tuesday in Miami

THURSDAY

NFL EXHIBITIONS: Seattle at San Diego, 7 p.m., Channel 2; Cincinnati at Atlanta, 5 p.m. , ESPN:
ESPN gladly puts the Bengals up there so you can see what’ll happen in the next episode of HBO’s “Hard Knocks.” KCBS happily puts up the Chargers to get you ready for the regular-season interruption.

FRIDAY

MLB: DODGERS vs. TAMPA BAY, Dodger Stadium, 7:10 p.m., Prime:
James_Loney_2013If the Dodgers have any claim to be called “the hottest team in baseball,” the Rays are definitely in the same ballpark, having become the first AL East team since 1995 to move from seven games back to sole possession of first place in fewer than 25 games. The Rays’ starting pitching has a lot to do with it, but then again, first baseman James Loney has been hitting better than .340 since June 29 (as has rookie Wil Myers in the same time frame).
Loney was the odd man out last year when the Dodgers and Red Sox made that huge late August trade, replaced at first base by Adrian Gonzalez. In his first full year at Tampa, Loney has managed to post numbers (.310, 10 HRs, 51 RBIs, 2.0 WAR) that stack up well against Gonzalez (.297, 15 HRs, 66 RBIs, 2.9 WAR) at a fraction of the salary (Loney is making $2 million with the Jays vs. the $21 million Gonzalez is due by the Dodgers).
The series continues:
Saturday, 1:05 p.m., Channel 11
Sunday, 5:05 p.m., ESPN

MLB: ANGELS at CLEVELAND, 4:05 p.m., FSW:
Former Angels castoff Scott Kazmir (7-4, 3.89) has revived his career with the Indians and should pitch against them in this series.
The series continues:
Saturday, 4:05 p.m., FSW
Sunday, 10:05 a.m., FSW

CYCING: U.S. NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS at Velo Sports Center in Carson:
The fastest track cyclists in the country compete through Sunday, some of them in a new Olympic discipline – the six-event omnium, which includes the points race, individual pursuit and a time trial. More info: www.usacycling.org

NFL EXHIBITION: Dallas at Oakland, 7 p.m., Channel 5:
Remember, it’s just practice.

SATURDAY

WNBA: SPARKS at NEW YORK, 10 a.m., TWC Sports Net:
A five-game road trip finally ends – Staples Center was booked for the X Games, and then for four nights of One Direction. Not sure which one is louder.
The week also includes:
Sparks at Connecticut, 4 pm. Tuesday, TWC SportsNet
Sparks at Indiana, 4 p.m. Thursday, TWC SportsNet

SUNDAY

Usain-Bolt-blazes-to-victory-in-100-1I20N6A6-x-largeTRACK AND FIELD: WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS in Moscow: Men’s 100 meter finals, 9:30 a.m., Channel 4:
The first two days of the nine-day event features the finals of the men’s 100 meters. Usain Bolt ran a 9.94 to win the Jamaican nationals in June, Justin Gatlin leads the U.S. field for this, Tyson Gay (positive drug test) won’t be here, and USC’s Aaron Brown, who won the men’s 100m title at the Canadian National Track and Field Championships, will also contend.

MLS: GALAXY at DALLAS, 5 p.m., ESPN:
You sure this isn’t another tournament game for the Galaxy of some sort?

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email