Expert Review: Callaway Rogue HybridPublished on 03/14/2023 · 7 min readThis review is my honest opinion of the hybrid, which I bought with my own money in February 2020.
Photo courtesy of Ryan Hernandez
About this review This review is my honest opinion of the hybrid, which I bought with my own money in February 2020.
The Callaway Rogue Hybrid is very easy to hit with a fantastic sound and feel. It is well-suited for more advanced players and mid-handicappers, as it is forgiving and is just on the cusp of turning into a fairway wood. Excellent for multiple shot types as I found it easy to hit out of rough and awkward lies. It is one of my most trusted clubs in golf tournaments.
About the club I own
- Model: 2020 Callaway Rogue Hybrid
- Loft setting: 3H, 19° loft
- Shaft type: Project X Even Flow
- Shaft flex: Stiff
- Average score: 73-78
- Handicap: 3
- Experience: 25 years
- Right/Left-Handed: Right-handed
- Typical ball flight: High fade
- Golf ball used: Titleist Pro V1
- Club swing speed: 93-97 hybrid speed
- When I bought the club: February 2020
- Days tested: 100+
- Where I’ve used it: I practice almost every day at a range near my house in Denton, TX called Wild Horse Golf Club. I also play in local tours here in the Dallas area.
- Weather and wind conditions: I have used it in every condition, from windy and rainy to bright and calm, from 40 degrees to 110 degrees.
How it performs
What I was looking for
I bought this because I was finally looking to replace my 3 iron. As a 35-year-old, it was becoming harder for me to hit the 3 iron as I liked and had heard that hybrids were more manageable, but had been against them for a long time. I thought that hybrids were only for new and high handicap players. However, I knew friends who were good golfers who had put a hybrid in the bag, and that is what led me to finally look into them. I tried this club and have never been happier to replace a club with something new.
Why I chose this club
Funny enough, I picked this club after discussing it with a Curated Expert. This was long before I began working at Curated as an expert. They talked through three options; the Callaway Rogue, the TaylorMade M3, and the Titleist H2). When I went into GolfTec to hit them, I added the Mizuno CLK on top of the three that Curated picked out. The Rogue stood out for its smooth feel; it was so effortless and was just as I had imagined it feeling when I'd watched the pros use it. I was so surprised by how it felt that I knew I needed to add it to my golf bag. Now I am a massive proponent of hybrids and offer them to many customers.
What I love about it
- Distance: Distance was one of the biggest things I was looking for. I needed something that was not a wood but would help me on longer Par 3s that I could no longer play with my 3-Iron. Not only can I get it a long way (235 yards max.), but I am able to work it at different distances when I need to.
- Forgiveness: Along with distance, I wanted something with more forgiveness than the blade irons I had been playing. The Rogue is so good with mishits. I can hit it off the toe or heel and still keep it in play.
- Feel: The club feels very stable. The length is perfect to feel like I am under control but still able to have a powerful swing. It is a great mix of iron and wood. Also, the feeling at contact may be the best club I have ever hit. The smoothness at contact reminds me of a PGA Pro striping one on TV.
- Sound: Sound is a hard thing to evaluate as a pro or a con. Everyone prefers something different but even my wife (who has only ever played at Top Golf) was like, “Wow, that sounds nice.”
- Shaft Feel: The Evenflow does what it says and the club feels smooth from beginning to end. I have a stiff flex at 85 grams, and the shaft has such a good combo of weight and balance that it glides the head through the turf every time. Hard to call any shot a mishit because it is almost impossible to do.
- Grip Feel: I have the Golf Pride MCC Align and I love these grips. They are the best grip I have ever had. I would not recommend the alignment any longer because it is difficult to put it on correctly every time. But the MCC is a fantastic combo grip that works for the crazy weather changes we get here in North Texas.
- Spin: The center of gravity for this club has been moved forward from previous models. That allows me to launch the ball higher but it does not add spin, which is crucial for me to hold greens with increased distance.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Workability: The Rogue does have a larger head. It does err on the side of forgiveness rather than workability as I cannot work the ball as much as I would like. But I am willing to sacrifice this because of the feel and accuracy of this club.
- Aesthetic Appeal: The Rogue is not the prettiest hybrid I have ever seen. There are more sleek and smooth rescue clubs out there. Though not my favorite look, the larger head can be ignored for its performance.
- Launch: While I would not classify this as an issue necessarily, the Rogue tends to launch high. This is great for newer or high handicap players but for better players, this may tend to balloon on them if they are not careful and may need to consider a “pro” version.
Best shot with this club
In a tournament in Colorado, I was playing the Par 5 in 14th place at Murphy Creek Golf Course. I was in the running for a Top 10 finish. It is a very tough Par 5 as it has a very natural slope to it that makes hitting a good drive there very hard. The green is guarded by bunkers in front, and wasteland behind and off the left which cascades down a steep hill. I hit my driver perfectly and set myself up for a chance to reach the green in two. I had 245 to the green, and I knew the hybrid was the play. The Rogue is the most trusted club in my bag so I knew I could put a good swing on it and get a little help from the altitude. I hit it flush and it stopped about 15 ft from the hole. I knocked in the Eagle and ended up finishing in the Top 7. That shot sticks so clear in my memory it feels like yesterday.
Value for the money vs. other options
The Callaway Rogue Hybrid was the most accurate hybrid of the ones I mentioned in “Why I chose this club” (TaylorMade M3, Titleist H2, and Mizuho CLK), which is not surprising given the larger head. It just depends on what is preferred – a hybrid that is more forgiving, or one like the Apex/Mavrik Pro that can be used to shape the ball a bit more. I would put it up against the Callaway Super Hybrid ($399) any day of the week.
The Rogue is a better-looking, more mid-sized version of the other hybrids that Callaway makes. Given its reasonable price, it should be the pick of Callaway’s range for those who want something cheaper and more forgiving than the Epic or Apex, but with a better sound, look, and feel than the Mavrik.