Matt Kuchar Agrees to Pay Caddy Full Amount

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Written: Jay Busbee
Voice over: Michael Robles
Music: David Cutter
Pictures: Getty Images

KucharGate has come to a close.

Matt Kuchar, by all accounts the nicest guy on the PGA Tour, found himself in one hell of a mess over the last few weeks when news surfaced that he’d only paid David Ortiz, his fill-in caddy, a fraction of the usual fee after a victory at the Mayakoba Classic in November. Friday at the Genesis Open, Kuchar, who’d come under withering criticism for the move and subsequent statements, apologized and vowed to pay the caddy in full.

“I let myself, my family, my partners and those close to me down, but I also let David down,” Kuchar said in a statement. “I plan to call David [Friday night] when I’m off the course to apologize for the situation he has been put in, and I have made sure he has received the full total that he has requested.”

What happened with Kuchar and the caddy?
Kuchar earned $1.3 million for his victory at Mayakoba. He’d hired Ortiz, a caddy with local knowledge of the course, since Kuchar’s regular caddy was unable to make the trip. Kuchar and Ortiz struck a handshake agreement for $4,000 if Kuchar recorded a top-10 finish, and that was what Kuchar paid, plus a $1,000 bonus after the win … even though regular caddies get 10 percent of tournament winnings.

Kuchar added to the controversy when he made comments suggesting that the amount he’d paid Ortiz was “fair.” To some critics, that smacked of privilege and insensitivity, two traits which aren’t rare on tour but which Kuchar generally doesn’t display.

“The extra $1,000 was, ‘Thank you — it was a great week,’ ” Kuchar told Golf.com on Wednesday. “Those were the terms. He was in agreement with those terms. That’s where I struggle. I don’t know what happened. Someone must have said, ‘You need much more.’ ”

Why did Kuchar change his mind?
Friday, facing intense criticism and getting no support from his fellow players, Kuchar walked back those words. “This week, I made comments that were out of touch and insensitive, making a bad situation worse,” Kuchar said. “They made it seem like I was marginalizing David Ortiz and his financial situation, which was not my intention. I read them again and cringed. That is not who I am and not what I want to represent. My entire tour career, I have tried to show respect and positivity. In this situation, I have not lived up to those values or to the expectations I’ve set for myself.”

Kuchar had initially offered another $15,000 bonus. But Ortiz had sought another $45,000, for a total of $50,000, or just under 4 percent of Kuchar’s winnings. “Matt is a good person and a great player,” Ortiz told Golf.com this week. “He treated me very well. I am only disappointed by how it all finished.”

But now, it appears the matter is closed. “I never wanted to bring any negativity to the Mayakoba Golf Classic,” Kuchar said. “I feel it is my duty to represent the tournament well, so I am making a donation back to the event, to be distributed to the many philanthropic causes working to positively impact the communities of Playa del Carmen and Cancún. For my fans, as well as fans of the game, I want to apologize to you for not representing the values instilled in this incredible sport. Golf is a game where we call penalties on ourselves. I should have done that long ago and not let this situation escalate.”

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Comments

retardadon 021 says:

When I make it to the pga tour, I'm gonna make sure my caddies get at least a 100 dollar subway gift card when I win 1 million at a tournament!

Andy Rhee says:

It makes me sick just looking at him on TV!

John Jasper says:

since ILLEGAL ALIENS cost this country $150 BILLION a year, i say Matt was right to tip low.

LabGorilla says:

He showed his true colours. I loved Rory’s comment: ‘We all know how important money is to him.’

ZatManDo says:

Fill in caddies beware…Steer clear of the Kuch. I wonder when the last time he carried his own bag?

Joycelyn Robertson says:

My wife loves Matt as a golfer, it's poor with golf's ethos that Matt doesn't get it with his money.

Joseluis Rojas says:

Kuchar is an @$$hole, jim rome ur da man dude, greetings from laredo texas!!!!!

1weirdbird says:

We can continue yelling Kooch Kooch Kooch instead of cheap cheap cheap

Robert Sutherland says:

He may be a good golfer but he's a weasel. The next one that happened is he hit a ball and it landed in another player's pitch mark. He argued a ridiculous argument for at least 5 minutes. He should have been given a time penalty. That was the 1st round of the 2019 memorial tournament. Pathetic.

Devlins10 says:

Lol watched the cheap fuck today argue a pitch mark rule. He made a fool of himself I thought. Hit the fn ball. Lmao. I kinda used to like him . His narcissism is showing.

ronmch20 says:

Nicest guy on tour?? Bullshit. He's a piece of shit, that sheepish grin not withstanding.

Ramsay Mery says:

He is not a good guy. He will never live that down.

dub16100 says:

Now we can say Douuuuuuuche instead of Kooch.

dub16100 says:

Damage already done you cheap piece of shit.

Paul Adams says:

Too late Kuchar !!!! You are not sorry for. the GREEDY Incident that you pulled, You are just sorry that the incident went public. It will be how you are rememberd by the golfing public, in the future.

Jeffery Baker says:

Kutcher went home on a private jet his caddie took the bus home

Robert Slydell says:

What surprised me the most about this was that Kuchar hadn't won in several years. Tune in to a telecast and the crew can't get enough of kissing his ass, like he's a world beater.

Robert Slydell says:

I've never liked this guy, never bought his "aw shucks" persona on the course. Reminds me of FIGJAM Phil Mickelson, turns on the smiles and the aw shucks for the people outside the ropes, followed by reverting to asshole status in the locker room. At least Tiger Woods never hides his prickly personality. Steve Elkington is a douche also (saw this at the Phoenix Open a couple of decades ago) but I don't think Elkington tried to ever come off as a nice guy. I can respect that.

Christo Four says:

Hey Matt, Pay the man another $80 Grand!!!

Michael Hosdo says:

This younger cucked generation loves words like privileged, marginalizing etc. He is just a cheap ass.

FRED RANAHAN says:

if you listen.. the caddy never got the $130,000. The caddy only asked for $50,000 after the backlash. Kuchcar wait another 3 weeks then donated $50,000 to a Mexican charity…FOR THE GOOD OF THE GAME…lol

Kris Waters says:

Cooch the mooch

MrJamescord says:

Hi true colors came out. I was a fan of his but the way you treat a waitress or those under you tell you all you need to know. His responses were jaw dropping. Does Matt not have anyone in his inner circle that can tell him what is in his best long term legacy.

Rick Spore says:

I will never cheer for that Piece of shit I thought professional golfers had class obviously not golfers like Matt Kutsher Tiger woods treating their caddies what a joke

Rick Spore says:

Matt Kutcher you are disgusting person I hope you never win again GREED what a loser

Dave Weiss says:

Don't come to Hawaii because I'm going to kick your ball into the drink

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