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You might not be aware of the fact, but only a third of all shots taken in golf is taken with woods or irons, meaning that putters and wedges are responsible for 70% of every shot you make! On the other hand, you may already be aware of this (all too painfully), and are looking for the best pitching wedge to help you make a smooth transition from your irons to the wedges. In this best pitching wedge review, we will take a closer look at pitching wedges, why you need one, and help you pick the one best suited for your needs. Keep on reading to find out more.
What is a Pitching Wedge?
In case you’re still uncertain about the whole experience, keep in mind that wedges are essentially a subset of irons, but very “specialist” irons, with high lofts, designed to launch the ball high into the air. With this in mind, it’s no surprise that the lowest loft on these is 45 degrees.
These are the pitching wedges, and they usually range from 46 to 48 degrees, with 45 and 49 being the extremes. The second highest would be the gap wedges (≈50°–53°), then the sand wedges (≈54–58°) and, finally, the lob wedges (≈60°–64°), plus ultra-lob wedges (up to 70°), though these feel somewhat gimmicky.
Each of these subtypes plays pretty much as the name would suggest, and most golfers will use them on distances up to 125–130 yards, when they break out the pitching wedge. Now, there’s no objective way to decide which pitching wedge is the most perfect one for you, so the best we could advise is go out and test what feels the best for you.
Best Pitching Wedge Comparison Table
Ping Glide 2.0 Wedge
Benross Tribe MDR Wedge
Best Pitching Wedge Review
To save you the trouble of doing the research, we made this short list of the seven top rated pitching wedges for this year. We hope this will bring you a step closer the the wedge for you in your search. Enjoy!
Titleist Vokey SM6 wedges are definitely one of the best sets of wedges on the market right now, with plenty of nuances in the range – 13 lofts, five grinds, three finishes, the works. Their pitching wedges are definitely some of the most popular pitching wedges in recent golf history, and with good reason, though it would be nice to see more grinds besides F on lower lofts.
On the plus side, they feature an innovative feature that makes a world of differences in pitching and gap wedges – the so-called Progressive CG. Basically, the “progressive” part here implies that the Center of Gravity (CG) aligns with the impact position for each loft, starting low down the face on the 46 and moving upwards with the loft. This translates into enhanced control on the ball and better flight predictability.
On a similar note, Titleist also gave the grooves a bit of makeup, making them narrower and deeper, so you can have more spin control on full shots, letting you park the ball on the green with precision.
2. Ping Glide 2.0 Wedge
The Ping Glide 2.0 is the new and improved version of the older Ping Glide. The first thing you’ll probably notice, apart from some minor cosmetic changes, is the extra groove on pretty much every loft, which adds just enough spin for better control on the pitch shots, bordering punch shots in carry distance. Moreover, the grooves are now even narrower and deeper, which generates about 400 rpms more per shot, according to the tests.
The wedge, beautifully, comes into its own on the rough, allowing you to predict the flight and then execute it with as much precision as possible. It’s only marginal gains compared to the older gen, but then again, it’s always marginal gains when talking about successive generations of golf clubs. One final gripe – the only loft under 50 degrees is the 46, which sort of limits the options, and it would be nice to have something in between.
The Cleveland RTX-3 Cavity Back wedges come in lofts ranging from 46 to 64 in 2-degree increments, and as many as 5 bounce degrees. However, speaking specifically of the pitching wedges in this line, there’s only one bounce available – 8 degrees, which is both a positive and a negative thing. On the one hand, it would be nice to have the option of getting a lower bounce for players that have good control on their swing, but then again, the 8-degree angle is very versatile as far as cutting divots goes.
The new and improved grooves (made narrower and deeper), coupled with the lower and more front-placed CG allow you to generate more spin on each stroke, as well as a bit more control on the distance. Also, the new CG helps decrease vibrations and maximize head stability, making the sweet spot all that easier to hit, which definitely helps beginners and intermediate players.
The Callaway Mack Daddy 3 is one of the most popular pitching wedges at the moment, and the whole line of MD3 wedges rank at the very top. As you might’ve assumed, the pitching wedge is just a part of a bigger set that ranges from 46 to 64-degree lofts (in 2-degree increments), so whatever loft you need to close the gap in under 130 yards, this is the way to go.
Now, a minor gripe would be that both the pitching lofts come with an 8-degree bounce, and it would be nice if there was a lesser angle for players with more controlled approach. A nice feature that distinguishes the MD3 wedges from the competition is the progressive groove design, with lower lofts (pitching and gap wedges) sporting a 30v design, with narrow and deep grooves for better spin control on full swing shots. This is important because it allows you to not compensate for the spin when making a transition from your irons to the wedges.
The Mizuno T7 is one of the most versatile wedges on our list. Not only does it come in lofts ranging from 45 to 62 degrees, but the gap is only one degree, meaning there are at least 5 pitching wedges to choose from. The 45 loft is rarely used in most configurations, and the 49 is pretty useless if you already have a 50-degree gap wedge, but the rest are prime candidates for the title of the most valuable pitching wedge on the market.
As far as bounce goes, it starts at five degrees for the 45, and increases by 1 degree as you go up, except for the 49, which has a 6-degree bounce. This makes the Mizuno T7 barely bite into the turf, if it bites at all. Also, the head shapes are specific to each loft, helping you with full shots on lower lofts.
If you’re looking for one of the most forgiving pitching wedges, you’re in the right place. The Mizuno S5 was designed to be rounder and sport a larger profile than its predecessor, making it appealing for a very broad range of players. Speaking of ranges, there are 25 loft/bounce variants available, ranging from 45 to 62 and 6 to 16 degrees, respectively.
This is for the wedge in general, but the choice of pitching wedges in particular is a bit pauper-ish – there’s only the one with a 49-degree and 6-degree bounce. Granted, this is borderline gap wedge, but the low bounce angle makes it ideal for low-to-mid pitch shots. Next to its cousin, the Mizuno T7, this is definitely one of the highest ranking pitching wedges available.
7. Benross Tribe MDR Wedge
The Benross Tribe MDR has earned its place on this list mostly due to its being budget-friendly, but still giving you a good bang for the buck. The one major gripe we have about it is that the lofts begin at 48 degrees and go up to 58 in 2-degree increments, so they’re sort of limited when it comes to both pitching and lobbing.
Still, you can make your configuration work with this 48-degree pitching wedge and a 52 gap wedge, making the job of gapping the yardage with stock swings all that much easier. What makes the Tribe MDR unique, however, is the somewhat longer hosel that provides it with increased stability, which comes along nicely when you play near the green. This is the perfect pitching wedge if you’re working within a budget, definitely.
When it comes to setting up your bag, every golfer will have his or her own preferences – some will bring only two wedges, some three, others will go up to four or five. However, we all know which two wedges are certain to find their place – the pitching and the sand wedge.
For this reason, we prepared this best pitching wedge review of 7 wedges and summarized each briefly to give you at least an idea of where to start your search. We sincerely hope you’ve found at least something to interest you and may the fores be with you! (Nope, that’s not a typo).