If the 1974 U.S. Open was the Massacre at Winged Foot, then this year's USGA test was the Escape from Oakmont. That's what Angel Cabrera did -- escape with a victory yesterday.
Vijay Singh was quoted as saying earlier that he thought 10-over, maybe 12-over would win the U.S. Open at Oakmont Country Club near Pittsburgh.
He was half right. Argentina's Cabrera won the U.S. Open with a 5-over. Phil Mickelson didn't make the cut, but it should be added that he was playing with a bad wrist. And Tiger Woods looked as frustrated as he ever has and finished just one tough putt shy of tying Cabrera after 72 holes. Woods said that too many downhill putts did him in. On the downhill, Oakmont's greens were slick slalom runs.
Over his last four majors, Woods has won twice and finished second twice -- an incredible run for anyone except, perhaps, Woods. After yesterday's outcome, he said of his recent majors record, "Not terrible but could have been a little better."
And the emphasis was more on the "could have been a little better."
Woods has come to raise expectations that much -- even more so for himself than golf fans.