Injury-plagued northern Cal native Oberholser making ’13 debut in L.A.


Arron Oberholser, who has had four surgeries on his left hand in the last few years, will make his 2013 PGA Tour debut this week in the Northern Trust Open at Riviera.

The 37-year-old Oberholser, who captured the 2006 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am for his only victory on the circuit, could have returned last week at Pebble, but said he wasn’t quite ready – in addition to the fact that it’s now hard for him to play in the chilly February weather on the Monterey Peninsula.

“I can’t do anything in the wind and cold,” said Oberholser, who probably has a career in broadcasting ahead of him and spent last week doing a stint on Golf Channel.

“I used to like the cold. Now I loathe it. … At home (in Scottsdale, Ariz.) in 85-degree weather I play great. But it’s a different animal out here.”

Oberholser, who grew up in San Mateo, Calif., just south of San Francisco, has 12 starts on a Major Medical Extension in which to earn $349,854 and retain his playing status on the PGA Tour.

A 1998 graduate of San Jose State with a degree in Broadcast Journalism, Oberholser had an arthritic bone removed from his left hand in one of the surgeries and also underwent a five-hour operation on his right hip.

“After five surgeries, I have aches and pains that don’t like (cold) weather,” said Oberholser, who won two tournaments on the Nationwide Tour and two on the Canadian Tour. “With my hand, doctors don’t know what’s going on. They take X-rays and they say it’s all clear. But I feel it.”

Last year, Oberholser played on the PGA Tour for the first time since 2009, missing the cut in the Waste Management Phoenix Open and withdrawing after two rounds at Pebble Beach.

His last full season on the PGA Tour was 2007, when he recorded five top-10 finishes in 21 events, including a tie for fourth in the PGA Championship and a tie for second in the Deutsche Bank Championship during the PGA Tour playoffs.

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