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Beem, Weir among leaders when they need it

Mike Weir, Round 2, Deutsche Bank Championship
J. Rogash/GettyImages/WireImage
Mike Weir followed his first-round 65 with a three-under 68.

NORTON, Mass. (AP) — Rich Beem isn't going quietly from these PGA Tour Playoffs.

One week after he narrowly avoided elimination, Beem kept alive his improbable run Saturday at the Deutsche Bank Championship with birdies on his last four holes for a 5-under 66, leaving him in a three-way tie with Mike Weir and Aaron Baddeley.

Beem cannot finish lower than second if he wants to advance to the third tournament next week, and a crowded leaderboard with 36 holes remaining includes Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, who each shot 64 to get within three of the lead.

But it was another impressive performance by Beem, who is slowly becoming the poster boy that even long shots are allowed to dream of a $10 million prize for the winner of the FedEx Cup.

"Of all the things I could be the poster child for, this is not the one that I would have picked," said Beem, who went from 134th to 113th in the standings with his tie for seventh last week at The Barclays. "It's kind of crazy how it's all coming together, but I sure am having fun. This is certainly interesting. I've just got to keep trying to make some putts, and who knows?"

Beem isn't the only player desperate for a good week.

Weir, the former Masters champion and recent captain's pick for the Presidents Cup, needs to finish in the top five to have any chance of moving into the top 70 in the playoff standings and advance to the BMW Championship outside Chicago.

This is the first time since a year ago at Pebble Beach that Weir has been atop the leaderboard through 36 holes, and the Canadian has gone three years without winning.

That weighs more on him than the FedEx Cup.

"I just want to play well for myself," Weir said. "It's been a while since I've hoisted a trophy, and more than anything, that's what I'm concerned about. That would get me into next week."

Weir built a two-shot lead in swirling wind at TPC Boston, losing his grip on the lead over his last two holes. His tee shot on the par-3 eighth missed to the green to the right and led to bogey, and his approach on the ninth went just over the green, leaving him a downhill look at the hole that took him three shots to get down. He still shot a 68 and had few complaints.

Baddeley birdied his final hole for a 66, in contention for the second straight year at the Deutsche Bank.

They were at 9-under 133, one shot clear of Mickelson, Sean O'Hair (66), Brett Wetterich (68) and Ryan Moore (69).

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