John Smoltz made his PGA Tour Champions debut at the Cologuard Classic over the weekend and finished strong, despite a rocky start.
The Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher said he was proud of how his tournament ended Sunday when he made pars on the ninth and 18th holes, which were problem spots for him Friday and Saturday.
"Those holes have got me by the throat," he said, via USA Today. "I somehow mustered a par on 18, I somehow mustered a par on nine … I'm 1-over for the tournament, but those two holes I was 5-over. So that's a big turnaround when you're talking about just bogeying them and that's a three-shot difference."
Smoltz, 51, finished the first round even-par 73. He started strong in the first round, recording birdies on three of the first eight holes. However, he struggled after that.
Saturday's play started out similarly, with Smoltz ruining his 1-under score on the 18th hole. There he recorded another double-bogey to finish 1-over 74 on the day.
"I really thought I was coming in here, felt like I could play under par and that I could play this golf course … I was under par both days all the way until the end," Smoltz said after the second round. "It's much easier closing baseball games than it's been closing out the golf tournament."
When asked what he could do to improve his golf play, Smoltz responded that he needed to get in better shape.
"I got a little fatigued again," Smoltz said. "A lot of golf in this last 12 days and that's just the way it's got to be for me because my schedule doesn't allow me to lead up any other way. So I work for a week and then I'll play for a week. So I will go to work on some physical things again in the meantime, and I've got to make sure that every single shot has trust instead of some had hope."
Smoltz was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame after a 21-year MLB career, all but one season with the Braves. During that time, he won one World Series in 1995, when he was the NL Cy Young Award winner, and was an eight-time All-Star.