Waste Management Phoenix Open Recap
Rickie Fowler was finally able to close out the Waste Management Phoenix Open with a victory this past weekend after several close misses in past years. However, it certainly wasn’t easy. After taking a 5 shot lead with a birdie on 10, he promptly fell behind Branden Brace two holes later after an extremely unfortunate break and triple bogey on 11, followed by a bogey on 12. However, Fowler recovered and made two birdies down the stretch while Grace faltered on 17. Fowler ultimately won the tournament by 2 strokes at 17 under par. With the rainy and cooler conditions on Sunday, the final group of Fowler, Matt Kuchar, and Justin Thomas combined to shoot 8 over par on Sunday, making the final round rather enjoyable to watch. Fowler entered the tournament at 22 to 1 odds, the seventh favorite in the field.
AT&T Pebble Beach Pro Am Preview
This week the PGA Tour will be on the California coast at Pebble Beach. There are 156 players in the field. Dustin Johnson makes his first appearance in the states since the Tournament of Champions, and is fresh off a victory in Saudi Arabia on the European Tour last week. Other favorites in the field include Jason Day, Tommy Fleetwood, Tony Finau, and Jordan Spieth.
Similar to the Desert Classic a few weeks ago, the tournament will be played on three courses over the first three days of the tournament. The cut will take place at the end of round 3, with the top 60 and ties making it to Sunday. The final round will be played at Pebble Beach Golf Links. Details of the three courses are shown below, with the difficulty ranking based on the 2018 tour season.
· Pebble Beach GL, par 72, 6,816 yards, 16th most difficult, poa annua greens
· Spyglass Hill GC, par 72, 6,953 yards, 22nd most difficult, poa annua greens
· Monterey Peninsula CC, par 71, 6,958 yards, 38th most difficult, poa annua greens
These courses are shorter and have smaller greens than the average tour course. It’s worth noting that the US Open will be played at Pebble Beach GL this summer. The USGA has already started initial preparations of the course for that event. So while the course certainly won’t play like a US Open this week, it’s possible the fairways will be a bit narrower than in past years. Further, the amount of recent rain in the area could mean taller and thicker rough.
The winning score at this event has been between 15 under and 19 under in 8 of the past 10 years. Last year Ted Potter Jr. outlasted Dustin Johnson, winning the tournament at odds of 500 to 1. Jordan Spieth won in 2017 at 8 to 1 odds and Vaughn Taylor won in 2016 at 300 to 1 odds. Clearly, some long shots have won here, so it may be worth it to sprinkle a play or two toward the lower end of the betting list this week.
Keep an eye on the weather leading up to the tournament this week. There are always possibilities of rain and gusty winds on the coast. It may be a challenge to nail down the tee time edge this week given the three course rotation, but stacking tee times in DFS is not a bad idea. Early forecasts call for chances of rain and strong winds on both Friday and Saturday.
Finding the right course fit is a bit tough this week. History has shown a variety of players performing well here, including players that simply aren’t that great in general. While the shorter nature of the courses would lead you to believe distance isn’t important, long hitters such as DJ, Jason Day, and Jimmy Walker have excelled here historically. Thus, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to consider driving distance in your analysis, even though players will club down off the tee a fair amount this week. Around the green play should come into play a bit more often than normal given the smaller greens and potentially difficult conditions this week.
Patrick Cantlay Winner 25/1 + T5 5/1
Tommy Fleetwood Winner 22/1 + T5 4.5/1
Patrick Reed Winner 33/1 + T5 6/1
Course Breakdown: Pebble Beach GL
Holes that will score the most points that should be focused on are:
Hole# 7 Par: 3 106 Birdie Rate - 21.8% Par Rate - 67.3%
Hole# 4 Par: 4 331 Birdie Rate - 24.5% Par Rate - 62.6%
Hole# 18 Par: 5 543 Birdie Rate - 30.3% Par Rate - 49.6%
Hole# 6 Par: 5 513 Birdie Rate - 43.9% Par Rate - 44.7%
Hole# 2 Par: 5 502 Birdie Rate - 49.8% Par Rate - 40.8%
- Par 5 Scoring (3 of the highest scoring hole are short par 5s)
- Par 4 Scoring (There are a ton of short par 4 holes with 12-20% Birdie%)
- SG: Approach & SG: Putting (Top 10 finishers on this course have had 1.18 SG on their approach shot and 0.95 SG putting. To give you reference the SG:OTT was only 0.29 SG and the SG: ATG was only 0.31. Big emphasis on approach & putting)
- GIR Gained – This will be another key factor as this is not a bombers course. The GIR gained by the past winners is am massive 1.92 SG and the top 20 finishers are between 0.89 and 1.05. Golfers who shot less than 0.35 SG on GIR missed the cut.
- Proximity from 100-125 and 200+ - 23-25% of the approach shots are going to come from 100-125 years and another 23-25% from 200+. The approach shots in the 125-200 category are around 14% for each and a very small number from <100 yards.
Golfers to consider for your lineups!
Andrew Putnam - $7,900
Coming off a terrible outing last week where he only put up 21.5 DK points and then missed the cut I’m hoping his ownership will be suppressed. He has started off 2019 with 80.5 DK points on 01/03 and then followed that up with 115 DK points on 01/10 and then followed that up with 109.5 on 01/17. He took a week off and then had a miserable outing last week. The reason I like him is he fits this course really well. We talked above about SG: Putting, Drive Accuracy and GIR. He is jumping out with a 1.43 SG putting (which is the highest on pgatour.com) and a 62.2% for driving accuracy which is putting him in the top half and an amazing 73.9% GIR which also has him in the top 20.
Graeme McDowell - $6,800
SG: Putting is 0.91, Drive accuracy is 72.5% and GIR is 75.0% he is coming in right behind Putnam.
Chez Reavie - $9,000
SG: Putting is 0.22, Drive accuracy is 64.3% and GIR is 73.8% and SG: Approach is 1.07. Chez is also coming off 3 outings with 100+ DK points in each one with 126, 115 and 102.5. He also fits the course well. Most of the golfers are not positive in all of the stats listed above. The golfers I’m bringing up are position marks across those categories.
Matt Kuchar - $10,000
SG: Putting is 0.25, Drive accuracy is a nice 75.4%, GIR is 77.5% and SG: Approach is 0.72. Kuch is also coming off 76.5, 143.5 and 95.5 DK points giving him solid form. He is expensive but you are paying for a solid floor.
Sungjae Im - $8,400
He is just scoring everywhere. 94.5, 117.5, 75.5 and 90 DK points just in January 2019! He is averaging over 10x value across the board. Just play this guy!
2018 AT&T Pebble Beach Top Finishers:
1. Ted Potter Jr. – 1st
2. Dustin Johnson – T2
3. Jason Day – T2
4. Phil Mickelson – T2
5. Chez Reavie – T2
6. Kevin Streelman – 6th
7. Scott Stallings – 7th
8. Paul Casey, Jimmy Walker, Brian Gay, Patrick Rodgers & Grayson Murry – tied 8th.
CUT MONSTERS: (Golfers who have made 5 cuts in the last 5 years at this tourney!)
1.Dustin Johnson – (2nd, 3rd, 41st, 4th and 2nd)
2. Jason Day – (2nd, 5th, 11th, 4th and 64th)
3. Alex Cejka -
4. Jordan Speith – (20th, 1st, 21st, 7th and 4th)
5. Pat Perez –
6. Jimmy Walker –
7. Sean O’Hair –
HOT GOLFERS TO START THE YEAR: (Golfers who are providing the highest value to salary ratio since January 2019 and playing at least 3 tournaments.)
1. Talor Gooch – $7,200 – 147.5, 118.5 and 32 points (99.3 average)
2. Adam Svensson - $6,900 – 86, 128, 73.5 points (95.8 average)
3. Julian Etulain - $6,100 – 78, 117.5 and 80.5 points (92.0 average)
4. Dominic Bozzelli - $6,800 – 88.5, 136 and 40 points (88.2 average)
5. Michael Thompson - $7,400 – 55, 125.5 and 88 points (89.5 average)
PAR 5 MONSTERS: (Golfers who are ranked high in the last 36 rounds in the P5: 500-550 where there will be a lot of scoring on this course. Also that are projected at least 7x value.)
1. Tommy Fleetwood – 1st
2. Adam Scott – 4th
3. Joel Dahmen – 7th
4. Adam Hadwin – 8th
5. Steve Stricker – 11th
PAR 4 MONSTERS: (Golfers who ranked high in last 36 rounds for Par 4 scoring.)
1. Patrick Rodgers (3rd and 21st)
2. Patrick Cantlay (4th and 17th)
3. Brian Stuard (18th and 9th)
4. Aaron Baddeley (20th and 11th)
5. Ted Potter Jr. (28th and 6th)
CONSECUTIVE CUT MONSTERS: (Golfers with the highest consecutive cut streaks.)
1. Brandt Snedeker - 13 cut streak
2. Jason Kokrak - 12 cut streak
3. Tommy Fleetwood - 11 cut streak
4. Chez Reavie - 9 cut streak
5. Dustin Johnson - 9 cut streak
Thank you for reading and good luck!