Best Wedges for Mid-Handicappers
The problem with having a handicap that sits comfortably in the middle is that it can be tough to get the correct clubs for your needs. This is because you are in between the range of looking for clubs that are easy to hit, as well as looking for clubs that offers you more ability to play around with your shots and get more control.
This issue becomes even more apparent when dealing with wedges. After all, your short game is often the part where things can be won or lost, so you want to know that you have the best clubs for your game.
That’s why we are going to look at making life that little bit easier for you by looking at wedges that are ideal for the mid-handicapper. By the end, you should have a better understanding of what’s out there, as well as what to look for yourself.
Table of Contents
- 1. Best for Producing Spin - Titleist Vokey SM8 Wedge
- 2. Best for Balanced Shots - Ping Glide 3.0
- 3. Best for Customization - Callaway MD5 Jaws Wedge
- 4. Best for Options - TaylorMade MG2 Wedge
- 5. Most Forgiving - Cleveland CBX 2 Wedge
- Why Have More Than One Wedge?
- Understanding Your Game When Buying a Wedge
- The Loft
- Thinking About the Bounce
- Focus on the Grooves
- Overall Conclusion
1. Best for Producing Spin - Titleist Vokey SM8 Wedge
Offers a classic chrome finish
Comes with 52 degree of loft
Offers increased MOI and exceptional feel
The first thing that strikes you with the Titleist Vokey SM8 wedge is that it has an absolutely classic shape to it. This is amazing to see, and it does make you feel that you are playing with a traditional club, but one that has the latest technology packed into it.
Titleist has decided to go with tungsten weighting, and they have pushed it to the absolute front of the club face. That then means that it increases the MOI while also giving you an extraordinary amount of feel.
The grooves that appear on the club face are also precision milled. They are going to give you the absolute maximum amount of spin along with real durability, so you are going to be able to keep on hitting the same shot over and over.
Also, this spin aspect is further enhanced by the way in which the club face has a series of micro-grooves that sit in between the main grooves. This gives you so much more control over the shot, and it’s really pushing the boundaries of what is allowed.
Overall, it’s the feel and control that makes this club stand out from the crowd. Oh, and the fact that it looks the part is also rather impressive as well.
A club needs to do more than just look the part, and luckily for us, this Titleist Vokey SM8 wedge delivers on its promises. The spin and control over your pitch that this club is able to provide is amazing, but it’s only going to really work its magic when you already understand what all of this control means.
Due to the real need to be aware of spin, we will take half a mark off as it’s more for mid to high handicappers.
2. Best for Balanced Shots - Ping Glide 3.0
Contains wheel-cut grooves to improve interaction with the ball
Available from 54 degrees to 60 degrees of loft
High MOI improves accuracy
Constructed from soft stainless steel adding lightness to the club
Delivers high amount of spin
The Ping Glide 3.0 wedge does also include a sand wedge, but the main thing is that this club is going to get you out of trouble in next to no time.
It does this primarily via the grooves that are cut into the face of the club. They are wheel-cut, and we are talking serious precision here. Also, as the loft increases, so does the number of grooves, so you are always going to be able to get the same control no matter which wedge you use.
These grooves are going to improve the overall interaction with the ball. It will allow you to get some real spin and grip on the ball helping you to get it out of trouble as the club face practically sticks to it and gets it up off the ground.
This wedge by Ping is even tour-proven, and the results it’s able to achieve without over-complicating matters does mean it’s ideal for mid handicappers.
For the sand wedge, the club has a special elastomer insert. This is intended to provide you with a softer touch, and that’s the kind of thing you need when getting out of the sand around the green.
However, if you go for the pitching wedge version, then it’s still going to provide you with that huge amount of feel and control over your shot. It should make it easier to hit the green and get the ball to do what you want.
Overall, this wedge by Ping doesn’t try to do anything fancy, but it does perform exceptionally well in getting the ball up into the air while you maintain that control.
This wedge by Ping is going to be a great club to own if you are indeed a mid to high handicapper. It offers you a good balance between helping you out with your shot, and yet giving you the ability to play around with things on your own.
To be honest, the only negative listed is sort of stretching it a bit because this wedge is one of the best out there if you are this type of player. That is why it is being given full marks.
3. Best for Customization - Callaway MD5 Jaws Wedge
Manufactured from mild carbon steel
Various stock shaft options available
Lambkin grip used as standard
Groove in groove technology included
Offers amazing spin control
Callaway has long built a fantastic reputation for itself when it comes to clubs, adn the MD5 Jaws wedge is another to add to that list.
Made from mild carbon steel, this club is sleek and it looks mean on the course, but this is a wedge that backs up its looks with amazing performance. Not only does it come with a Lambkin grip as standard, but it also offers you different stock shaft options to fit in perfectly with your game.
But then there’s the technology in the club itself.
This club has highly versatile bounce and soul grind combinations, and that makes it easier to use this club no matter the lie you find yourself in. Basically, it’s going to help you out no matter if you are on the fairway, in the semi-rough or even in a bunker.
The club also has groove in groove technology, and the outcome of that is a club that allows you to produce huge amount of spin with your shots. However, this is something that is completely controlled at all times, so it’s all good.
The weighting is also designed to provide you with the maximum amount of feel, and this is something you will grow to love. The feel it offers makes it easier to learn more about your own shots as the feedback is perfect without being overwhelming.
The design of the head is also created to perfection. The camber and refined shape allows you to still have a great chance of making that perfect contact even when the lie appears to be against you. Basically, it will help you get out of trouble where other wedges may struggle.
This club is amazing, and it’s just what you would expect from Callaway. It looks mean, but the way in which it helps you to get a clean contact with the ball in even the most difficult of situations, is pretty cool.
It’s tough to really find anything wrong with this club. Once again, it strikes the balance perfectly of being able to help you out with your shots while still giving you some freedom. So, when it’s tough to find something wrong, then you need to give this full marks.
4. Best for Options - TaylorMade MG2 Wedge
Available in various lofts and bounce degrees
Contains raw face technology
Contains milled grind sole offering amazing consistency
TPU insert reduces vibrations
Thick/thin head design changes weight distribution
The TaylorMade MG2 wedge is going to blow your mind when it comes to the different technology on offer from the club. But first, it’s available in a range of loft angles as well as bounce degrees, so the club will have you covered no matter your preference.
The raw face technology means the club comes with some changes to the grooves. This is intended to provide you with the maximum amount of spin on your shot, so if that’s what you are looking for from your wedge, then the MG2 is capable of obliging.
The milled sole is a nice touch. The grind on it is intended to provide you with the optimum level of interaction with the turf, and this should happen no matter the lie.
Moving to the TPU insert mentioned earlier, this is in the back cavity of the club. The only reason for it being there is to give more of a solid feel when you make that connection. This will then reduce the vibrations you experience resulting in the club giving you more positive feedback rather than being hit with those shocks.
Finally, there’s the weight distribution as this should give the wedge some real balance, and the MG2 won’t disappoint.
It uses a thick/thin face, and that simply means the COG is located in the perfect position to optimize both flight and also offering real precision with your shots. However, the face is also open enough with a large sweet spot, so you can let rip knowing the club is going to help you out.
Overall, this club feels like a beast, and it plays like one as well. However, it also offers a real touch of finesse for those more delicate shots around the green.
While it’s good that TaylorMade has provided so many options with the club, it does feel a bit like overkill. That’s the only negative associated with the MG2 wedge though, so if that’s the only bad thing we can say, then it means it’s a good wedge.
The MG2 does work well with providing you ample opportunity to add spin to the shot, and that’s the sort of thing you want when dealing with your short game. As long as you understand the importance of spin, then this wedge should work well for you.
5. Most Forgiving - Cleveland CBX 2 Wedge
Available from 46 degrees to 60 degrees
Comes with hollow cavity design
Dynamic sole makes to easier to play any shot
Rote face technology offers greater feel and control
Contains an insert to lower vibration
The Cleveland CBX 2 wedge is available from 46 degrees of loft through to 60 degrees, so it does cover every eventuality.
The club itself is highly forgiving, and that’s great news even for a mid handicapper. The sole is wider than others out there, and it moves smoothly through the turf giving you greater control over the shot.
The club has the fourth generation of their rote face technology, and that is all about the grooves. These zip grooves are sharp, and the company itself says that they are the most aggressive grooves they have ever milled.
Ultimately, it means you will be able to grab some spin on the ball while still offering you a huge amount of control over your shots. When you get spin and control together, then your short game is going to be pretty impressive.
But Cleveland is also aware that a mid handicapper is not always going to make a clean connection, so they have placed an insert into the rear of the club to reduce impact vibration. That ultimately means you will have more of a true feel for your shot rather than having to deal with the shock factor.
Cleveland is known for producing clubs that are perfect for new players, and this CBX 2 wedge is no exception. It offers you spin and control while being very forgiving, and that’s the sort of balance you want as a mid handicapper.
Considering the price and the way it helps you via the sweet spot, it’s tough to take any points away from this club, so we aren’t.
Why Have More Than One Wedge?
We have mentioned several wedges above, and you need to remember that most people will have more than one wedge in their bag thanks to the important role they play in the game.
The reason why you need more than one wedge is to make it easier to get yourself out of trouble as well as controlling that shorter chip into the green.
Landing in sand, no matter if it’s a greenside bunker or one off the edge of the fairway, is going to involve you needing to get out of trouble. The sand wedge makes life so much easier as it glides through the surface and allows you to have a reasonable connection with the ball.
But a sand wedge is not going to perform as well when you are 80 yards from the green and are either on the fairway, or just off the edge.
Then, you need a wedge to help you to float the ball onto the green and control what happens when it lands. That means either killing the ball stone dead, or adding some spin to the shot to help it to get closer to the pin.
Understanding Your Game When Buying a Wedge
There are a number of important things to look out for when it comes to buying a suitable wedge, but the first thing you need to do is to think about your own game.
Pay close attention to your short game, and gain a better understanding of where your shortcomings may be. Where do you have some difficulties with your short game? Do you have issues with keeping control? Do you find your shots are more wayward than you would like?
As with any club, knowing where you have problems regarding your game makes it easier to then have a better understanding of the clubs that are out there on the market that may make a difference.
One of the main things connected to a wedge is clearly the loft. This dictates the type of shot you can play, and also the type of wedge you are purchasing.
Remember that the loft plays a role in determining the distance that the ball is going to be able to travel. In other words, it has a direct impact on the trajectory of the shot.
If you are planning on buying more than one wedge, then the basic rule is to make sure that there’s at least 4 degrees difference between the various lofts of the different clubs. What that means is you need to make sure that if your pitching wedge comes with a 48 degree loft, that your sand wedge has a minimum of 52 degrees.
Thinking About the Bounce
As we are talking about your short game here, you also need to think about the bounce. This refers to the way in which the sole of the club is able to rest against the surface. In general, the higher the bounce, which means the angle, then the lower the chance of the club being able to dig into the surface.
In general, that’s why a sand wedge is so good at what it does. It is designed to not dig into the sand itself giving you a clean strike and helping you to get the ball out of the sand thanks to the loft angle of the club face.
On the other hand, a pitching wedge, or lob wedge even, is going to have a lower bounce rate. That’s because they are designed for being used on the fairway, so you have a harder surface to contend with. You want it to be able to dig into it a bit more to get the ball up off the ground and into the air.
Focus on the Grooves
The grooves that appear on the face of the club aren’ there just for show. They have a specific role to play in the shots that you can then accomplish.
The grooves are actually similar to tread on a tire. They are there to effectively grab onto the ball and to then make it easier for you to manipulate what the ball is then capable of doing.
A deeper groove is going to make it easier for you to create backspin on a ball, but be aware that new rules have been introduced to reduce the depth that these grooves can be. That’s because it was felt it was making it too easy to create a huge amount of backspin, so it was ruled illegal.
But basically, the grooves help you to gain control over the ball and to get some spin on there. They can also be created by laser, and this gives the grooves a huge amount of precision. That is then reflected, once again, in the spin you can create.
This is tough as each wedge is exceptional. However, for price and ease of use, it has to be the Cleveland CBX 2 wedge. It just makes life so much easier, and the sweet spot allows for mishits offering you that space to work on other parts of your game.
However, the Ping Glide 3.0 is another amazing wedge, and it too won’t break the bank while offerinfg you everything you want from a club such as this.