Every pro or amateur golfer has a story behind their ball marker, and apparently Phil Mickelson has one behind what he uses exclusively at Pebble Beach Golf Links.
Mickelson has a great chance to grab PGA Tour win No. 44 at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am on Monday. He leads Paul Casey and Scott Stallings by three with just two holes remaining, and he’ll try to close it out when they resume at 11 a.m. ET on Monday. But win or lose, see if you can catch a glimpse of his unique ball mark.
Jim Nantz explained its special meaning during Sunday’s telecast. It’s a silver dollar, and it belonged to Mickelson’s grandfather, Al Santos, who was one of Pebble Beach’s original caddies when it opened in 1919. According to Nantz, Mickelson’s grandpa used to rub the coin and wish for a better life for himself and his family. That coin made its way to Mickelson, and he only uses it when he plays at Pebble Beach. When he plays in other events he uses a replica.
Mickelson, who has played at Pebble Beach as a pro since 1992, was actually asked about Pebble Beach and its special meaning to him earlier this week. He mentioned his grandfather.
“There’s a few things that within our family that go back to this place where my grandfather grew up here and he was one of the original caddies in the caddie group,” Mickelson said. “And he would go around here for 25, 30 cents a loop. And when we would talk about this place and what it meant to him growing up, and so there’s an emotional tie to this place. I don’t think it has anything to do with why I’ve played well here in the past, but you never know, it’s just I always enjoy coming here.”
Mickelson certainly has good vibes at Pebble. If he wins on Monday, it’ll be his fifth victory in the event, tying him with Mark O’Meara for the most in tournament history.