No Teasing This Time
The last time that we checked out the Mizuno MP A-Series line of putters, I told you that you were going to be angry when you got to the end. I was anticipating that you would be justifiably mad about not being able to get the putters in the USA. Something cool happened in the comments section of that article though, a few of you chimed in about how you could order the putters online and have them shipped to the states. Well done faithful readers.
What that means for you today is that if you see a putter in this new batch that you like, you can probably get it. How nice is that? No anger. No questioning why Mizuno doesn't sell these in the United States. Well, I actually do think that it is OK to still ask that question. However, now we can ask it out of curiosity rather than as an expression of our denial's angst.
Mizuno MP A-Series Putters: Quick Refresher
Before we look at the new models, let's review some of the features that are unique to the MP A-Series line.
The black finish on the Mizuno MP A-Series putter line is one of the nicest black finishes that I have encountered. It is visually rich, depicting a pleasant amount of sheen while at the same time not coming across as glaring. I still have not a clue about what the "IP" really stands for, and as such, I'm going to stick with my original guess of irresistibly pretty.
Soft and precise. That is the best way to describe the materials and the construction of the MP A-Series line. Mizuno just simply got it right with the construction of these putters. They feel amazing, and are, in the six models that I have inspected, completely free of construction imperfections. Outstanding quality control.
One of the features that I really appreciated about the original three Mizuno MP A-Series models was that they were what I would call tweaked traditional. They had classic shapes, but featured subtle differences. Take the A303. It looks like many other round mallets, but it has dual sight lines and a short flow neck. That makes for a mallet that is not face-balanced. Does that alienate the traditional mallet player? Maybe, but there are a whole bunch of traditional mallets out there that he or she can pick from. The A303 design places a mallet in the hands of someone who didn't fit the straight stroke. Creativity in design is refreshing, especially when the putters are attractive and well performing.
All three of the new models feature the same top line bevel as the previous three models. Add in a little white paint, and you have a alignment system that Mizuno says makes the putter "much easier to square up". I had initially thought that this bold white line would prove distracting, but I actually welcomed its return when I rolled these new models. Combining this alignment bevel with the various cavity lines and head lines makes for an overall easy aiming experience.
General Specs: Mizuno MP-A Series Putters
- Forged 1025 Carbon Steel
- CNC Milled
- Black IP Finish
- Top line alignment bevel
- Face “Score Lines” to reduce skid and promote true roll
- Oversize Winn grip
ThreeSIX Head shapes (A301, A302, A303, A304, A305, & A306)
This putter is a beast. Of all the A-Series putters, this is the largest. The face to flange distance on the A304 is greater than the also wide-body dimensions of the A302 and A305. The A304 is not unruly in mass though because it also sports a significant notch of removed material. Keeping with the tweaked traditional theme, the shaft of the A304 enters the head just a little bit more heelward than you would expect with a mallet like this. As a result, the A304 hangs below face balanced and as such likely suits the stroke of both the straight and slight-arc putter.
Center-shafters rejoice, the A305 is here for you. The A305 looks very similar in shape to the A302, with the A305 having a straight shaft entering directly into the center of the top line. If you are looking for a face-balanced, minimal offset, center-shafted putter, this is the stick for you.
What is this? A traditional heel-toe weighted blade? Have I lead you astray with all of my tweaked traditional talk? Nope, the A306 has a little tweak as well. Just take a look at the neck. From address. we seem to be looking at the normal plumbers neck found on most anser-style putters. Change the viewing angle though and we see that the A306 actually has a slant neck. This neck gives the A306 some significant toe hang, likely placing it in the hands of the strong-arc player. This little difference changes how the A306 plays, and at the same time, expands the line to meet the putting styles not represented by the other models.
These three Mizuno MP A-Series models are solid additions to an already solid line of putters. Mizuno really did get it right with the MP A-Series. They are attractive, fully functional, and diverse enough to meet the needs and desires of most golfers. Regrettably, they are still part of the Mizuno non-USA line, so you probably can't demo one in your local shop if you live in the states. However, as we learned from the original MP A-Series Club Report article, you can find them for purchase. If the reader comments are to be believed, and why wouldn't they be, those who bought them were very happy
campers golfers. Well done Mizuno. Now let's bring them officially to the USA.