Value Picks Returning Top 10 Finishes This Season
1st – Matt Kuchar – $8,500 – Sony Open
2nd – Oliver Wilson – $6,600 – Qatar Masters
2nd – Brad Kennedy – $8,300 – Handa Vic Open
3rd – Ian Poulter – $8,900 – Dubai Desert Classic
3rd – Paul Casey – $8,600 – WGC Mexico
4th – Ryan Palmer – $7,200 – Honda Classic
4th – Sungjae Im – $7,700 – Valspar Championship
5th – David Drysdale – $7,400 – Handa Vic Open
5th – Gaganjeet Bhullar – $9,500 – Kenya Open
6th – Joost Luiten – $8,700 – Saudi International
7th – Sungjae Im – $7,300 – Waste Management Phoenix Open
7th – Kevin Streelman – $7,300 – AT&T Pro Am
8th – Nate Lashley – $8,300 – Puerto Rico Open
10th – Byeong Hun-An – $7,500 – Arnold Palmer Invitational
10th – Jason Kokrak – $8,300 – Arnold Palmer Invitational
WGC Match Play
An important word of note this week. When constructing your lineups this week be sure to have players in separate brackets that can’t meet until the quarter finals. Last year there was a surprisingly high number of lineups that could literally only have 3 or 4 players advance to the quarters.
Jim Furyk – $7,200
World Number 54, Jim Furyk, comes into this week full of form. If a more popular player entered this week with Furyk’s form people would be crowing about his chances, but luckily for us Furyk is no Tiger, JT, Rory or Rickie when it comes to the popularity stakes which means we should get him under the radar this week. From the 5 events he has played this year Furyk has managed to plot his way to 4 top 20 finishes which includes a 9th and a 2nd. Stats wise, the former US Open winner ranks 3rd in the field this week for Opportunities Gained over the last 2 months and 14th for Shots Gained Tee 2 Green over the same period. His recent putting prowess is going to be the real difference maker this week however. Furyk ranks 3rd in the field this week for Shots Gained Putting over the last 2 months, which, when it comes to Match Play is going to prove to be a real weapon in his armory. Following the Ryder Cup debacle, the 2018 USA team captain will relish the chance of beating certain players on his way to lifting the Walter Hagen Cup.
Brandt Snedeker – $7,800
What I’m looking for in the World Match Play is a player that consistently putts well on these types of greens. If we filter the all time Strokes Gained Putting stats to fast, Bermuda greens then Brandt Snedeker ranks 1st in the field this week. The world’s most famous ‘pop putter’ is also putting well of late too. He ranks 11th in the field this week for Shots Gained Putting over the last 2 week. This excellent putting form paired with his general all round good game saw him pop his way to a 5th place finish just 2 events ago at The PLAYERS Championship.
Justin Harding $6,200
I’ve been looking forward to seeing Justin play on the big stage for quite some time now. The South African has risen from 716th in the Official World Golf Rankings to 49th in just 14 months. He won’t pop on anyone’s stat models this week as he has no PGA stats to talk off. This will almost guarantee a low ownership. Playing mainly on the Sunshine Tour that feeds many South Africans to the PGA Tour, Harding played 28 events last year. He finished top 10 in 12 of them which includes eight top 3 finishes and four wins! Harding’s last 7 finishes on the European Tour has been 2nd, 1st, MC, 26th, 4th, 11th, 7th. This means that despite the step up to the European Tour he is still producing. There is probably no one playing better than Harding on the European Tour right now and I’m excited to see how that form transpires this week.
Matthew Fitzpatrick – $7,700
When talking about a player that putts well and is also playing well at the minute, Matthew Fitzpatrick is a name that springs to mind. The Englishman ranks 4th on The EuropeanTour this season for Shots Gained Putting and 23rd in this field for Shots Gained Putting over the last 2 months on the PGA Tour. He also ranks an impressive 12th in the field this week for Shots Gained Putting on fast, Bermuda greens. ‘Fitzmagic’ is close to playing off of his best ever mark in the Official World Golf Rankings where he currently sits 34th and has some very impressive results of late. In his last 7 events Fitzpatrick has balled his way to a 4th place finish at the Singapore Open, a 2nd at the Hong Kong Open and a 2nd at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.
Lee Westwood – $6,600
Former World Number 1 Lee Westwood is having somewhat of a mini revival right now. For a while now, Westwood has been a lightly raced horse only playing in the big events, however, this hasn’t prevented him once again climbing the world rankings. In August last year the Englishman dropped as low as 125th in the Official Golf World Rankings. Since then, however, he has already climbed back up 65th in the world. Along the way he has picked up 4 top 7th place finishes including a 2nd and a 1st in just 12 events. Widely considered the best player in the world to have never won a major, Westwood still holds enough sway to put pressure on any player in a match play event. Following the pain of last year’s Ryder Cup, playing Europe’s 4th highest all time point scorer in the Ryder Cup could cause a few wobbles from some of the burnt 2018 USA team.
Russell Knox – $6,600
The last name on my list was a toss up between Byeong Hun An and Russell Knox. Both have very similar credentials. However, with Byeong Hun An being a standout candidate in his price range and Knox being accompanied by the likes of Si Woo Kim and Luke List in his I figure Knox is going to be lower owned. His 12 cuts made in a row highlight how solid his form is right now but the thing that gives me the most belief in a great performance this week from World Number 62 is how many opportunities he is giving himself to make birdie right now. The Scotsman ranks 2nd in the field this week for Opportunities Gained over the last 2 months. A Match Play opponent that is giving himself chance after chance after chance to make birdie is eventually going to wear down any opponent. There is also something about WGC events that brings out the best in Knox. 3 of his best 15 career finishes have been in WGC events.
DJ Trahan – $7,000
Ok, so to find value in an ‘alternative’ event like this you are going to need to delve deep. Luckily for you I have done just that and DJ Trahan at $7,000 looks to be good value to me this week. The World Number 609 ranks 3rd in the field this week for Shots Gained Tee 2 Green over the last 2 months and 17th for Opportunities Gained. One thing that may surprise you is that the former World Number 62 ranks 4th in the field this week for Shots Gained Total in the all time stats making him one of the elite players playing here. He is also a relatively high Draftkings Points scorer too, ranking 8th for DK Points Gained over the last 2 months. This steady play of late has seen him record 4 top 20 PGA Tour finishes in his last 6 events.
Johnathan Byrd – $8,300
PGA Tour veteran Johnathan Byrd comes into this event having made his last 6 PGA Tour cuts in a row. In fact 3 of his last 4 events have resulted in top 25 finishes. The world number 494 ranks 3rd in the field this week for Shots Gained Tee 2 Green over the last 2 months and also 9th for Opportunities Gained. This shows how well he is playing of late. This solid play has resulted in him ranking 6th in the field this week for DK Points Gained over the last 2 months.
Kyoung Hoon Lee – $7,500
The South Korean was hotly tipped to go well last week but ended up shooting a 79 in round 1 and then withdrawing. The reason for his withdrawal was a hip injury. As of yet he has not withdrawn this week so hopefully all is well again. If we do have a fully fit KH Lee playing then $7,500 in this field is a real steal. The World Number 276 ranks 14th in the field for Shots Gained Tee 2 Green over the last 2 months and 11th for Opportunities Gained over the same period. Before his withdrawal last week Lee was progressing nicely with his results having posted finishes of 25th then 35th then a very impressive 7th at the Honda Open. Performances like that in this field will yield a mass of Draftkings points this week.
Roger Sloan – $7,600
The impressive PGA Tour rookie has gone from strength to strength since joining the PGA Tour this season. At the start of this year the Canadian was ranked 462nd in the world and in just the space of 8 events he has climbed to 262nd. Ranking 25th in this field for Shots Gained Tee 2 Green over the last 2 months, 11th for Opportunities Gained and 6th for Draftkings Points Gained has helped Sloan make all 4 of his last cuts. The 2nd place finish he powered his way to at the Puerto Rico Open was in a very similar type of field as he’ll face this week so everything is pointing towards a repeat (or better) this week.
Adam Schenk – $7,400
Another PGA rookie churning out consistent results. Schenk has made 70% of his cuts on the PGA Tour since the start of this year with a 16th place finish at the Puerto Rico Open being the highlight. He approaches this week ranking 6th in the field for Shots Gained Tee 2 Green over the last 2 months and 3rd for Draftking Points Gained. When the World Number 294 played here last year he plotted his way to a respectable 35th place finish so there are no question marks about his suitability to the Corales Golf Club.
Brian Stuard – $7,400
Brian is the 21st best ranked player in the field this week yet is priced up as just the 34th most expensive play. He put in an impressive 18th place finish last week at the Valspar so will be brimming with confidence going into this week. Stuard’s play has been good for a while now. Since the start of the year he has made 7 out of 8 cuts. This includes 3 top 20 place finishes in big events. Stats wise he ranks 20th in the field this week for Shots Gained Tee 2 Green over the last 2 months and 7th for Opportunities Gained. In the all time stats Brian ranks 7th for Shots Gained Total in this field which makes him one of the elite players gracing Puntacana this week.