Some amateur golfers are just afraid certain clubs. High on the list for most amateurs is the lob wedge. Visions of chunked and bladed shots skitter across the gyri and hide in the sulci of their brains as they address those delicate touch shots over bunkers to tucked pins. And then, well, sometimes that’s exactly what happens.
My son, a high-school junior who plays on his school’s golf team, was a victim of those waking nightmares last year. He was missing greens and having to hit mini-flops to try to get close to save par or bogey. But he just didn’t have a club he felt good about: the sand wedge had too much oomph—and bounce—but the lob wedge he was using (one of my old ones) was digging into the turf.
Enter Cleveland Golf and their legendary wedge designers. I ordered a new 60-degree CBX Full-Face wedge ($150) for my son, and when it arrived, I regaled him with the design features that I thought would engender some confidence in him and fit his short game.
First, as the name implies, the Rotex and laser-milled Tour Zip Grooves on these wedges go all the way across the face—all the way to the edge of the toe. This is a brilliant feature, as it ensures spin even on toe-hits (which my son tends to do). These keep the ball from knuckling out of the rough if contact is widely off-center.
The second feature is the half-cavity design, which moves the center of gravity a bit more toward the toe and also provides rock-solid stability no matter the contact.
The third is the high-toe face, which stretches the toe-end of the club higher than normal, in case the club slides a bit too far under the ball. Even if this happens, you can still make decent contact.
Finally, the range of bounces can fit anyone’s game. On my son’s, we went with a 10-degree bounce, which is around 2 degrees more than most lob wedges. This bounce keeps him from digging into the turf and works well for bunker shots, but still allows him to get the club under the ball on those flop shots.
The skinny on the Cleveland Full-Face Wedges
So how did all this engineering work out for my son? After just one round, the quote that sums it up is, “I really like this lob wedge!”
Almost immediately, confidence grew in the quality of the contact he was making, and he was able to swing more freely, even on those more delicate shots. No more fear.
And the joy of telling my son, “Nice up and down!” is, as they say, priceless.