All stats from Fantasynational.com!!! Ownership projections also provided by FantasyNational as well as data and trends from Fansharesports.com! Follow @fantasynational @fansharesports @sscherman
Anyone who has played DFS golf for more than about 10 minutes knows that your lineups are never safe in that one or two guys can blow the whole thing up and that it is truly a 4-day sweat in every sense of the phrase. I was hit with that HARD this past week as I had close to the nuts (except Mitchell) going into Saturday only to see my highest exposure guy, and OAD for the week, Sungjae Im, implode and almost MDF in very Keegan-esque fashion. One by one I saw Webb go high, Woodland struggle, Im almost shoot 80, and Stewart Cink go over par to blow up various GPP lineups and my cash lineups. All that being said, shout out to Fantasy Golf Bag and Fantasy National for helping me lock in Showdown lineups for R2 as I came in 3rd, netted about $200, and saved my week. This tournament was a spectacular finish with high drama down to the end and congrats to Keith Mitchell on his first PGA Victory. I really hope it was a precursor to more Florida swing drama and despite Tiger making me very sad with a WD on Monday, we all know he’s just gearing up for a PLAYERS and then Masters win, so it’s OK. Onto Arnie’s tournament…
Course and Weather Notes: Very peculiar like last week in that there is not much wind in the forecast, which can make this course REALLY difficult. This course is very long, and plays even longer than the listed yardage, since there are a ton of doglegs and less than driver holes, so it’s important to target the elite long-iron hitters (175+) as well as guys who can adjust to the very quick Bermuda greens here (normally 12.5+ on the stimp). There are a ton of bunkers (over 80 I believe) and several holes where water can creep up and punish non-accurate tee shots and approaches. Lastly, look for pristine Par 5 scorers as there are 4, all gettable, that need to be taken advantage of if players want to contend.
Key Stats – Last 8, 12, 24, and 50 Rounds (courtesy of FantasyNational.com)
In order of importance (excluding SG: T2G since it’s ALWAYS key):
- SG: BS
- SG: APP Blend (200+ yards emphasis; 33% of shots from here)
- BoB/Opportunities Gained
- SG: Par 5s
- Overall Proximity
- GIRs Gained
- SG: Putting Blend (Bermuda + Fast Greens)
- Driving Distance (small weight but it can’t hurt)
Players I’m Targeting This Week (and my approximate exposures):
9K and Above:
Rory McIlroy ($11,400): I rarely play Rory, not sure why, but he’s sure to be the mega chalk here and for very good reasoning as he is coming off of FIVE straight Top 5 finishes. Now that is elite. We all saw Rory gain an ungodly 9+ SG: P en route to victory last year and while I don’t see that happening again, he of course has the stats and both recent and course form to compete this week. I will probably target around 30% exposure and hope to be slightly overweight but not hinder a lot of rosters by taking the most expensive guy at 50+%.
Hideki Matsuyama ($9,300): Probably my favorite player in the field this week, it is always the same story with Hideki: If he can just find the putter, he will blow away the field. His last 4 starts are 19th, 9th, 15th, and 3rd and while he hasn’t dominated here the last 2 years (45th and 49th), he did finish 6th here in 2016 and 21st in 2015. One of the best ball strikers on TOUR and an elite long iron player, he’s once again hoping he can putt average or slightly above. I will target 50-60%.
Others plays in this range: Rickie Fowler
Mid-Tier Options (7.0K to 8.9K):
Ian Poulter ($8,000): I’ll be the first to admit I wasn’t aware of this either, but Poulter is coming in with the following finishes in his last 4 events: 3rd, 6th, 3rd, 6th… I’d say he’s in form. He doesn’t incredible history here but has made his last 8 cuts at Bay Hill and hold a 3rd and 4 Top 21 finishes. Per his stats, Poulter is 10th in SG: Par 5s, 5th in Overall Proximity, and Top 10 in GIRs Gained, BoB Gained, and SG: APP Blend. I think he’s one of the better value plays on the board and I will have at least 40-50% exposure.
Hao Tong Li ($7,400): As more and more Euro tour players have come over for PGA events, it’s harder to rank them based on stats with such little data; however, when we look at Li’s stats on the Euro Tour he ranks 21st T2G, 8th in Par 4 Scoring, 4th in Scrambling, and 3rd in SG: OTT, and has also been playing at a very high level. His last 3 starts consists of a 19th, 2nd, and 3rd, and while he had a mediocre finish here last year, I don’t see him popping in a ton of people’s models and therefore don’t see insane ownership. I currently have him projected for sub 5% and I will target 15-20% exposure and be well overweight.
Thorbjorn Oleson ($7,100): Keeping with the Euro theme, Olesen isn’t as consistent or maybe elite as other guys, but this price represents great value and someone I see coming in at well under 5% ownership. Olsen is a bomber, ranking 8th in Driving Distance Gained and over on the Euro Tour he ranks Top 40 in Par 4 Scoring, Scrambling, and GIR%. He has a 6th place finish here several years ago and a MC 2 years ago, and as I mentioned, can be a little volatile but I think taking around 15% will easily put you 2x and most likely 3x overweight which is great value for this young talented Euro player.
***Other guys I like in this range: Michael Thompson, Kevin Kisner, Keegan Bradley***
Low Tier Options (Under 7K):
Vaughn Taylor ($6,500): Somewhat let me down last week, but Taylor is ranking 20th in my overall model and per his stats, it makes sense: 7th in the field in the SG: APP Blend, 2nd in Overall Proximity, and 89th in BoB/Opps. Gained and we’re getting him at a dirt-cheap price. His last few starts have been sporadic as he finished 59th last week, 9th 2 weeks ago, 2 missed cuts before that, and a 7th 6 weeks ago; however, that’s to be expected with a guy this cheap. I am willing to take some exposure on him and just hope for a made cut with some upside. 10-15% exposure will hopefully put me 2x-3x overweight.
My Favorite Cash Game Plays (FULL DISCLOSURE: I don’t normally play cash in no-cut events)
1) Hideki Matsuyama
2) Ian Poulter
3) Charles Howell III
4) Talor Gooch
Fades for Me
Tommy Fleetwood: His finishes have been just average, I expect him to come in at high ownership, and if you look at his iron play it’s been extremely sub-par for several weeks now
Henrik Stenson: Unreal course history but I still haven’t seen any form whatsoever and he’ll get the auto 3-5% minimum ownership bump when people see his past finishes here
Luke List: I normally like playing him and he’s an elite BoB scorer, but has missed 3 of his last 5 cuts and it seems like putting isn’t his only issue right now
Rafa Cabrera Bello: I currently have him projected at 18% ownership and that could go even higher with the buzz he’s getting; there’s a lot of value plays and I’ll take a stand on this one as RCB hasn’t played here before and could be the 7K chalk that burns lineups
My DK Power Ranks – Generated using 30% Key Stats, 50% Recent Form, 10% Course History, and 10% in Average DK Points in their last 5 events
- Rory McIlroy
- Marc Leishman
- Rickie Fowler
- Jason Day
- Ian Poulter
- Justin Rose
- Hideki Matsuyama
- Jason Day
- Jason Kokrak
- Keegan Bradley
Higher Priced Chalk
- Rory McIlroy – 23%
- Rafa Cabrera Bello – 20%
- Jason Day – 18%
- Marc Leishman – 17%
- Hideki Matsuyama – 15%
Lower Priced Chalk
- Sungjae Im – 14%
- Nate Lashley – 12%
- Talor Gooch – 10%
Betting/One and Done
Betting insights and some options for any One and Done pools that you’re in as well as some pivot options. Please note that these are not always one’s that I personally have bet; however, I will note when I have bet them and at what number. Hopefully you either find better numbers, fade me completely, or let me know who you’re betting!
Hao Tong Li Top 5: 10/1
Nate Lashley Top 10: 16/1
Corey Conners Top 20: 9/1
One and Done: Note that not all chalk is bad but if you want to differentiate here are some options
Predicted “chalk” for OAD – Rory, Leishman, Day, Rose, Poulter, Stenson
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