All stats from Fantasynational.com!!! Ownership projections also provided by FantasyNational as well as data and trends from Fansharesports.com! Follow @fantasynational @fansharesports @sscherman
If you were watching the Arnold Palmer finish Saturday and the beginning of Sunday’s coverage, I feel like similar to me, you thought we were in for a hell of a finish with everything coming down to the last few holes and maybe even a playoff. Instead, we got Molinari storming the field like he did several times last year en route to a bogey free 64 and a relatively stress-free clubhouse sit. His 64 was staggering and had its own drama; however, I know selfishly I was looking for a similar finish to that of the Honda Classic the previous week, especially since my lineups were as good as buried by then. Speaking of those, I had Hideki as my highest owned player of the week and my OAD and boy do I continue to run BAD this year… Hideki lost himself -8.3 strokes putting while proceeding to gain almost 12 T2G, almost 7 in APP, 3.4 Around the Green, and yet finished 33rd… tilting to say the very least. We had a lot of good potential but unfortunately in what seems to be the ongoing theme this year, the chalk once again hit and Tommy and RCB both shot up the leaderboard while guys I needed to go low in Rory/Poulter/Kisner/Hideki all stalled or did nothing and sunk any hopes of a big payday. So it goes, and onto the PLAYERS aka the ALL CAPS TOURNAMENT.
Course and Weather Notes: This course has been played for many years so most have somewhat of a feel of how it plays but some other thoughts regarding the course and weather: Many people have posted it on Twitter but this course plays about a stroke or stroke and a half HARDER in March, historically, than it does in May. Further, as Tiger commented this morning (Tuesday) in his presser, it is playing a lot longer, as he cited last year he had 3 iron/9 iron into 18. This year? 3 wood/3 iron. Quite the difference in which maybe the bombers can find a slight edge. This course has a ton of water/bunkers in play which surround smaller than average greens (around 5500 sq. ft.) and greens that run FAST (probably around 13+ on the stimp), which gives a lot of need for 3 putt avoidance and guys who can lag well. Lastly, as is true with all Par 72s, when there are four Par 5s, especially this week when they’re all reachable in two, players have to be elite in Par 5 scoring to have any chance of contending. Also, they should probably avoid the BIG numbers if they can (like not hitting 5 balls in the water on #17).
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 (125-150/200+ yards)
- BoB/Opportunities Gained
- SG: Par 5s
- GIRs Gained
- Bogey Avoidance
- SG: Around the Green
- SG: Putting Blend (Bermuda + Fast Greens)
Players I’m Targeting This Week (and my approximate exposures):
9K and Above:
Dustin Johnson ($11,400): It seems like a ton of the chalk in the upper range is going to fall on Rory/JT and some Tiger this week which means DJ could easily come in at sub 13 or 14% ownership and wow does that seem criminal. We just saw him lap an elite field in Mexico and he is in the Top 5 statistically in GIRs Gained, Bogey Avoidance (1st), SG: BS, SG: APP, SG: Par 5s, and BoB/Opps. Gained. You have to pay way up and with so many elite value options in the loaded field people may pass on DJ while I plan to own 30-40%.
Xander Schauffele ($9,000): I love Xander this week as he presents an obviously elite player at only 9k whom I think can definitely win this thing. He ranks Top 10 here in SG: BS, Top 3 in SG: Par 5s and Top 20 in SG: Putting Blend, Bogey Avoidance, and GIRs Gained. We haven’t seen Xander in a few weeks but in his last 5 starts he has a 1st, 25th, 10th, 15th, and 14th not to mention he came T2 here last year in his debut. I like his form and how he sets up as an elite Par 5 scorer and will aim to have around 50% or more exposure.
Others plays in this range: TIGER MF WOODS (obviously)
Mid-Tier Options (7.0K to 8.9K):
Hideki Matsuyama ($8,300): Going back to Hideki in an effort to not be spiteful but also because every single part of his game aside from horrific putting is pristine. Hideki ranks 5th in SG: BS, 1st in the SG: APP Blend, 30th in SG: Par 5s, 18th in SG: ARG, 12th in GIRs Gained, and Top 30 in BoB/Opps. Gained. He has played well here before in which he’s carded a MC but also 3 Top 25s and a Top 10. I guess I’m hoping he can maybe even have a slightly below average putting week (average was asking too much) and see a Top 10 or better finish. 30-40%.
Paul Casey ($7,900): I expect Casey to get talked up quite a bit but he ranks so highly for me and is so consistent, I love him as both a GPP and solid cash play this week. Casey ranks 5th in my overall model and per stats, 5th in the SG: APP Blend, 12th in SG: BS, 9th in SG: Par 5s, 10th in SG: Putting Blend, 12th in GIRs Gained, 14th in BoB/Opps. Gained, and 20th in Bogey Avoidance. On top of his stats, Casey is coming off a 3rd, 25th, and 2nd in his last 3 starts and two straight Top 25s in his last 2 starts at TPC Sawgrass. He doesn’t have elite course history which maybe could bump his ownership down some but I think he’s a solid play in all formats. 40-50%.
Lucas Glover ($7,100): Never thought I’d see the day where I could say this but Lucas Glover has been straight fire over his last several tournaments. His last 3 starts consist of a 7th, 4th, and 10th and stats wise he is putting well (for him) while also ranking 22nd in SG: BS, 20th in SG: APP Blend, 7th in GIRs Gained, and 37th in SG: Par 5s. We see his price cut way down here due to the field but I still think he remains a very strong play until he shows us otherwise; I will target around 25% exposure.
***Other guys I like in this range: Ian Poulter, Rafa Cabrera Bello, Matt Kuchar, Gary Woodland ***
Low Tier Options (Under 7K):
Ryan Palmer ($6,600): Coming off a 4th in his last start, you could do much worse than Ryan Palmer at this price. His stats are solid in which he ranks 11th in the field in BoB/Opps. Gained, 22nd in GIRs Gained, 30th in SG: BS, and 27th in the SG: APP Blend. Per his course history, it’s quite sporadic as he’s missed several cuts, but also holds two Top 25 finishes and a 5th place several years ago. This is not someone of course to go all in on but I’m going to target around 10-15% and hopefully have around 3x the field.
My Favorite Cash Game Plays
1) Xander Schauffele
2) Paul Casey
3) Ian Poulter
4 Charles Howell III
Pivot Plays: Guys who no one will own but are interesting; not necessarily endorsing these plays…
Tony Finau ($8,400): Not in form whatsoever but can rack up points fast >>> projected for sub 6% ownership
Jordan Spieth ($8,900): Has been beyond miserable for months, but has the ability to pop anywhere >>> trending for sub 5% ownership
Trey Mullinax ($6,000): Great on Par 5s and Ball striker, stone minimum >>> projected for 3% ownership
Chez Reavie ($6,700): People on him several weeks ago but he cooled off >>> projected for 2% ownership
Fades for Me
Justin Rose: Probably a good time to get back on since he was bad last week but I haven’t liked what I’ve seen the last 2 tournaments and think there are better plays both above and below his price
Jon Rahm: Hasn’t been very consistent with his irons recently and a course like this always has blow up potential, which we’ve seen Rahm not handle too well…
Bryson Dechambeau: Irons have been way off and his last few tournaments have been very mediocre; robot needs to reset the system
Patrick Reed: Like previous 2, irons have been off (he ranks 112th in SG: BS in this field and 122nd in SG: APP Blend…) and I won’t jump back on him till I see him make a turn
My DK Power Ranks – Generated using 30% Key Stats, 40% Recent Form, 20% Course History, and 10% in Average DK Points in their last 5 events
- Rory McIlroy
- Justin Thomas
- Ian Poulter
- Dustin Johnson
- Paul Casey
- Sergio Garcia
- Xander Schauffele
- Rickie Fowler
- Hideki Matsuyama
- Tiger Woods
- Matt Kuchar
- Lucas Glover
- Rafa Cabrera Bello
- Tommy Fleetwood
- Jason Day
- Justin Rose
- Francesco Molinari
- Gary Woodland
- Marc Leishman
- Patrick Cantlay
Higher Priced Chalk
- Rory McIlroy – 18%
- Paul Casey – 17%
- Sergio Garcia – 17%
- Francesco Molinari– 16%
- Patrick Cantlay – 15%
- Justin Thomas – 15%
- Tiger Woods – 14%
Lower Priced Chalk
- Rafa Cabera Bello – 18%
- Lucas Glover – 12%
- Byeong Hun An – 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!
Byeong Hun An: 100/1
Rafa Cabrera Bello Top 10: 5/1
Byeong Hun An Top 10: 10/1
One and Done: Note that not all chalk is bad but if you want to differentiate here are some options
Predicted “chalk” for OAD – Fleetwood, Rory, JT, Rickie, Sergio
- Jason Day
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