PGA Stats & Plays from CheatSheetPros!
QUICK NEWS AND NOTES:
Congrats to Dustin Johnson on his 2 stroke come back to win the Travelers Championship. The most impressive thing about last week was a golfer who was 3rd in SG: Approach and 1st in SG: Tee to Green. This golfer had a chance to compete but struggled putting and was -0.83 SG:P for the tourney and in round 2 and round 4 he minus more than 2 strokes gained putting in each round which is awful. He still finished at -13 for T-11. That golfer is Viktor Hovland so keep an eye on him going forward this year because if his putter gets hot he could run away with one!
DETROIT GOLF CLUB – 7,340 yard – Par 72
Rocket Mortgage has only played here in 2019 and the winning score was -25 so you can guess the scoring here is going to grade as EASY in relative to par. This is a bentgrass course and whoever has the hot putter is going to be in the top 10. The 2019 cut line was also -4. The SG: putting is a high variance stat and that usually means that anyone who can get hot putting could put down a massive score.
STATS TO FOCUS ON:
This course has (10) Par 4s, (4) Par 5s and (4) Par 3s. The Par 5s are going to be the highest birdie holes (as usual) with 31%, 41%, 46% and 47% birdie rate. No other hole is over 26% and then they drop down drastically from there. The top 10 from last year finished at an average at 1.63 GIR: Gained. Proximity stats breakdown as follows:
200+ makes up 22% of the approach shots.
125-150 makes up 20% of the approach shots.
150-175 makes up 17% of the approach shots.
The strokes gained stats that are relevant this week are SG: Putting, SG: Approach and SG: T2G. The SG: ARG and SG: OTT are less relevant. Last year 13 of the top 15 in SG:P Putting made the cut, 12 of the top 13 in SG: approach made the cut and 13 of the top 15 in SG: T2G made the cut. To compare those against the stats I’m stating are less relevant you have SG: OTT and only 3 of the top 10 made the cut so you have 7 of the top 10 in SG: OTT just missed the cut entirely. SG: ARG only 6 of the top 15 made the cut. So that is what I’m saying they are less relevant.
PAST WINNER & NOTES:
2019 Winner: Nate Lashley -25
Some of the notables from 2019 was Doc Redman (he was in our article last week and he killed it!) he finished in outright 2nd place at -19. Rory Sabbatini T3 at -18, Joel Nieman T5 at -17, Patrick Reed T5 at -17 and Viktor Hovland T13 at -15 and finally Sungjae Im finished T21 at -13 and the notable stat on IM was that he was -0.43 SG: Putting.
GOLFERS OVER 10,000 ON DK: “HIGH END STUDS”
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU (11,700 DK / 12,200 FD) – The most expensive golfer this week in a weak field. DeChambeau has the highest strokes gained per round over the L20 rounds vs. the average golfer at +3.04. He is expensive but he is one of the safest golfers on the board. He has 102.5, 99.5 and 100.5 DK points in his last 3 giving him 8.6x value on his 11,700 salary. He should be a lock for 90-100 DK points and could go higher if his putter is hot. His numbers are rock solid and you can see them on our cheatsheet so I won’t waste time writing about a high owned stud. He is projected to the be highest owned over $10,000.
WEBB SIMPSON (11,000 DK / 12,100 FD) – The second highest golfer at 11,000 on DK is Web. What can we say about Webb? He missed the cut at the Charles Schwab and then came back red hot and won the RBC putting up 145 DK points! In SG: T2G, approach and putting he is 10th, 6th and 8th over his last 36 rounds. He has solid stats and coming off a solid win and projected to be around 10% less owned than Bryson so just take your pick between the two studs.
TYRELL HATTON (10,700 DK / 11,100 FD) – For early week ownership projections (take that with a grain of salt) Hatton is expected to be the lowest owned player over 10,000 on DK. At less than half the ownership of DeChambeau Hatton would be a solid GPP pick (if the ownership stays at those numbers). He is coming off a 3rd place at the RBC for 114.5 DK points, then 1st at the Arnold Palmer (before covid layoff) for 95 DK points and then a 6th place finish at the WGC for 99 DK points. The last 5 times he tee’d it up he has no less than 89.5 DK points and all finishes have been 14th or better. Another solid stat is that over his last 36 rounds he is 1st in SG: Par 4s and there are 10 of them on this course!
VIKTOR HOVLAND (10,000 DK / 10,900 FD) – He is my favorite play over 10,000 this week. First he is 1,700 less than Bryson and over the last 2 tournaments he has been right there in DK points. Last week Bryson had 102.5 and Hovland 100, the prior week at the RBC Bryson had 99.5 and Hovland 102. Yes Bryson is the safer pick but Hovland has win potential and 1700 is a lot of extra cash to add to your 6th golfers salary. Even though he struggled in putting last week with 2 rounds at more than -2 SG: putting he was still 3rd in SG: Approach and 1st in SG: Tee to Green. His putter gets hot and he can rack up some points!
GOLFERS 9,000 – 9,999: “UPPER MID-RANGE”
I don’t like this tier much this week because there are so many question marks and the salaries are pumped up. Some of these guys could easily miss the cut and most of them are projected to own a hefty ownership. I’m going to give you a couple that I “prefer” over the others but don’t feel strongly about.
KEVIN NA (9,100 DK / 10,400 FD) – He is someone who can put up 21 DK points and miss the cut OR someone that can win the tournament and put up 150+ DK points. So this is the ultimate GPP play. His price has been mid 7,000 range on DK for awhile now and suddenly with this weak field he is up to 9,100, ouch! He can go low, he won the Shriners and put up rounds of 68, 62, 61 and 70 and put up 152.5 DK points for almost 20x value. He is coming off a solid 105.5 DK points last week with a 5th place finish. He finished the tourney +1.41 SG: putting, +0.56 on approach and +1.17 T2G. The reason I chose NA is because he is projected to be the lowest own guy in this range and it’s not even close. He is projected to be about one-fourth the ownership of Sungjae Im.
TONY FINAU (9,100 DK / 10,600 FD) – He is coming off a CUT where he did not perform really well and his ownership is projected to be pretty high for this category. So not my favorite play but I do feel a little better about him coming in with a better performance. Prior to last week he had 87.5 DK points at the RBC and 83 at the Schwab for 33rd and 23rd place finishes. He is 16th in DK points his last 36 rounds, 3rd in T2G, 9th in approach and 7th in GIR:Gained and 6th in P4 scoring. The bad is that he is 85th in putting which doesn’t bode well for this course and only 105th in the proximity of 200+ yards and 114th in Par 5 scoring. He does have the highest “strokes gained” score in our model for this category so I’ll have “some” shares for GPP only.
SUNGJAE IM (9,800 DK / 10,800 FD) – He is the other guy that I will pivot to from Finau because I think one of them will do really well. I hate the price tag on IM at 9,800 on DK but with the weak field I guess I don’t have a choice. Sungjae was on a roll before the Covid virus shut everything down. He won the Honda Classic and put up 103.5 DK points and show 2 rounds of 66 and then followed it up with a 3rd place finish at the Arnold Palmer for 79.5 DK points. Coming out of the layoff he had a solid performance at the Schwab for 86 DK points which was good for 10th place shooting a 66 – 69 – 67 – 67. Then he missed the cut at the RBC and did so~so last week with 65 DK points. So he has potential but price feels a little high. He ranks out well for the course with 13th in DK points, 7th in T2G, 34th in approach and then his P3, P4 and P5 scoring ranks 12th, 16th and 11th. The bad is that his putting is sitting at 57th so let’s hoe he can get hot. The reason I’d put him in my player pool with the highest ownership is because he is also +1.10 SG per round on EASY courses.
GOLFERS 8,000 – 8,999: “THE SWEET SPOT”
This is the category where you can make your money. I’ll focus more in this range because this is where most of my core golfers will come into play for the week. Most of these guys are projected to be <10% with the exception of Adam Hadwin.
RORY SABBATINI (8,800 DK / 9,900 FD) – He is coming off 21st and 14th place finishes at the RBC and the Schwab for 84 and 88.5 DK points. He is playing +1.32 SG better per round than the average golfer. He is also 25th in T2G and 25th in GIR:Gained. He took 3rd here last year. His stats won’t blow you away but he just seems to make the cut and give you a solid cushion. Coming off two solid performances and crushed this course last year.
J.T. POSTON (8,700 DK / 10,200 FD) – He is your GPP play. He is coming off a 31.5 point missed cut last week at the Travelers but prior to that he had an 8th and 10th place finish for 103 and 86.5 DK points. He shot an 84 in round 1 of the Arnold Palmer and obviously missed the cut and then after the covid layoff he came back with 8 straight rounds between 65-69 and two top 10 finishes. His stats are almost comical to me because he is 15th in DK points but 84th in T2G, 118th in approach but 1st in putting???? He took 11th here last year and is +0.76 SG: putting on the year which is the second highest in this category of players behind Bezuidenhout.
DOC REDMAN (8,500 DK / 10,000 FD) – Before last week I had no idea who Doc Redman was but since there are really no other sports I have been digging hard into PGA. Doc came up with great stats and continued last week. Incase you missed it he finished T-11 with a final score of -13. That was with a -0.43 SG: putting! But he had a great +1.26 on approach and +2.25 on T2G. That was good for 10th in approach and 3rd in T2G. Pretty impressive! That gives him 93, 94.5 and 62 DK point performances coming out of the covid layoff. He is typically priced in the mid-upper 6,000 range and jumps to a whopping 8,500 this week. I still think he can make the cut and push 8-9x value. He has solid stats with 11th in T2G, 7th in approach and 10th in GIR:G and 11th in proximity. He also shot a -19 here last year for a stand alone 2nd place finish!
LUCAS GLOVER (8,400 DK / 9,800 FD) – So I have an excel sheet that I just keep on my desktop to track players DK point outputs each week. Lucas Glover popped up on that sheet last week as a great value so I put him in my player pool. He now has 3 outings since coming out of the covid break and put up 89.5, 90 and 87.5 DK points. Those are all solid 10x+ performances. His stats don’t blow you away but he has finished 20th, 21st and 23rd in his last 3. He did not play here last year so this will be his first run at the course.
CHRISTIAN BEZUIDENHOUT (8,300 DK / 9,600 FD) – He didn’t play last week but put up a solid 95 DK points for 28th place at the RBC and then missed the cut at the Schwab. He is another GPP play that could get hot or fizzle out and miss the cut. He has the best SG: putting in this category with +0.89 on the year. He also has a solid 1.00 on approach and 0.77 on T2G giving up a 0.63 in total ball striking. He is also playing at +1.98 strokes better per round than the average golfer. His approach, putting and proximity numbers are solid. If he can stay in the fairway and the course isn’t too long for him he could have a solid weekend run.
ADAM HADWIN (8,200 DK / 9,800 FD) – It looks like Hadwin is on a 13 cut streak. He didn’t play round 4 of the Pebble Beach so I think the system is cutting it down to 3 so keep that in mind. His average finish is around 39th and he provides a safe floor for your lineups. He is coming off 88 DK points at the RBC and 75.5 at the Schwab for 41st and 43rd place finishes. He is up and down just like he started off at the RBC with a 72 and then came back in round 2 with a solid 65. Statwise he fits the course really well with a 23rd in DK points, 34th in T2G, 12th in putting, 17th in GIR:G and 6th in proximity. He is also 18th in proximity of 200+ yards AND 13th in par 4 scoring.
GOLFERS 7,000 – 7,999: “The LINEUP FILLERS!”
In a very weak field this price range has a lot of variance. We are going to hit on some of the players we like for GPPs.
HAROLD VARNER (7,600 DK / 9,300 FD) – He is the guy that jumps out on my cheatsheet in this category. He is 20th in DK points, 6th in T2G, 5th in approach and 2nd in GIR:G and 6th in proximity of 200+ yards. The bad is that he is 100th in putting. Since coming back he has put up 87 DK points last week, a missed cut at the RBC and then 83 points at the Schwab. The Schwab he shot an opening around 63 and then followed it up with a 66 before finishing it up with a 70 and 72. So he can go low and his price is worth the risk. He was cut here last year but he is one of the highest rated ball strikers in the 7,000 range of players. He is +1.10 SG ball striking on the season
For the rest of these guys I’m going to hit on them quickly because there are several and they are all projected 50-60% to make the cut (i.e. RISKY).
ALEXANDER NOREN – After the return from covid he took 60th at the Schwab for 57.5 DK points (only 8x value) and then came back at the RBC with a 21st place for 104 DK points. In 3 of his last 8 events he has 100+ DK points and that is a massive return on his salary considering Bryson DeChambeau is around 100 in each of his last 2 events.
SEBASTIAN MUNOZ – He came back from the layoff with a missed cut at the Schwab and then also missed the cut last week. He did take 28th at the RBC for 85.5 DK points shooting 4 solid rounds of 65, 69, 69 and 68. Statwise he is all over the place but he is 23rd in T2G and 23rd in approach. In 6 of his last 7 cuts made he has finished in the top 28 or better with 3 top 15 finishes. Ideal GPP dart for us.
BRANDEN GRACE – Had to put in Grace for my boy Josh. He is projected at 1% ownership and coming off a missed cut last week. Prior to last week he had put up 74 and 80 DK points and finishes 61st and 19th. He is 17th in T2G, 22nd in approach and 35th in GIR:G. He does rank a lowly 119th in putting and 125th in par 5 scoring so let’s hope he can get lucky in those two and make a run!
BRIAN HARMAN – Harman I just can’t quit you! Missed cut last week but had 95.5 DK points at the RBC for 28th place and then 73.5 DK points for 23rd place at the Schwab. He was cut here last year but if he makes the cut he can give you some bang for your buck!
SCOTT STALLINGS – He put up 104 DK points last week and 72.5 at the RBC giving him two solid tournaments since coming back from the layoff. Mid range stats across the board but does pop up on the sheet with 19th in P4 scoring and 2nd in proximity of 200+ yards. This range is a GPP crap shoot at this point so mix and match.
PETER UIHLEIN – He is at the bottom of the range priced at 7,000 on DK and he isn’t someone that is ever at the top but he is always in that mid-range and is able to give you 70-80 DK points. He did put up 98 DK points at the Schwab for 14th place but that was an outlier for him. He shot 69 – 65 – 69 – 67 so maybe he is getting hot???
WILL GORDON – His ownership is projected around 4% after that performance last week. If you missed it he finished T3 at the Travelers with a great performance putting up a massive 112 DK points. These guys can fall off quick so be careful but I do like his stats. He also played the Farmers Insurance Open in January and put up 87.5 Dk points for a 21st place finish – and that was after shooting a first round 75! He also missed the cut at the Sony Open but took 10th at the RSM for 99.5 DK points. Gordon he positive strokes gained last week in every category and finished with a -17 score.
BRIAN STUARD – He wasn’t playing great before the covid break but has been decent since. He finished T20 at -12 last week and was positive across the board in strokes gained. He also finished 52nd and 43rd in the RBC and Schwab and put up 67 DK points in both contests. He won’t content for a win but making the cut and return 9x value (per DK salary) is a possibility.
MARK HUBBARD – 73, 85 and 60 DK points in his last 3 since the covid layoff. He is cheap and making cuts and ranks 26th in putting over his last 36 rounds. Hubbs in the player pool for GPPs!
MAVERICK MCNEALY – I guess we save the best for last. Mav is at +1.24 strokes better per round than the average golfer and that is the highest in this category making him a “hot” golfer right now. He has made 10 of his last 12 cuts and he has an average finish of 43rd place. He is coming off 75.5 DK points at the RBC and 73 DK points at the Schwab. He is a little all over the place as he started and finished the RBC with rounds of 72 but rounds 2 and 3 he went down and shot back to back 66’s. He is a solid golfer and was on a solid run between 10-1-2019 and 2-6-20 he made 7 straight cuts and broke 100 DK points 3 times and 80 in two others while finishing 11th, 5th, 37th, 53rd, 26th, 17th, and 37th. Mav is also killing the stat categories with a 22nd in DK points, 29th in T2G, 7th in putting, 22nd in proximity at 200+ yards, 3rd in P3 scoring, 28th in P4 scoring and 21st in P5 scoring.
GOLFERS UNDER 7,000: “DARTS – JUST NEED THEM TO MAKE THE CUT!”
My word we are really digging here! In an already weak field with inflated salaries who possibly is priced under 7,000 on DK that had a shot? We are looking at players who could make the cut and most are 40% or less probability to make the cut. Let me give you who I like right now but this field is thin.
CHESSON HADLEY – 9TH in DK points, 18th in T2G, 12th in approach and 24th in P5 scoring so why is he priced so low? He is 111th in putting and 144th in scrambling. He was also cut here last year. However, since the return he put up a 23rd place at the Schwab for 86 DK points and even shot a 64 in that tourney. Followed that up with a 58th place for 78.5 DK points at the RBC. That finish would have been much better because he shot (3) 68’s in rounds 1,2 and 3 and then a 72 that slid him down the ranks. In his last 11 tournaments he has broke 100 DK points twice with a 91, 86 and several in the 70’s giving you the GPP upside you need priced at only 6800 on DK and 8300 on Fanduel.
CAMERON DAVIS – So he wasn’t on my list but I want to give you a long shot GPP dart to play. He missed the cut last week and also missed the cut at the Schwab. So why are we looking at him? His ownership will be <1% at best and even after those two missed cuts he is playing +0.85 strokes better than the average golfer. He is also 14th in DK points, 22nd in T2G and 22nd in P5 scoring. He has some awful stats to look at with 114th in putting and 107th in proximity but he was on a tear before the covid layoff so I’m hoping we can get a break through. Between January 9th, 2020 and February 27th, 2020 he played 5 tournaments finishing 9th, 29th, 36th, 38th and 8th while putting up 75, 103, 89, 86 and 73 DK points. He was close last week (at making the cut) at the Travelers as he shot a first round 66 (-4) and then a 71 (+1) in round 2 that put up 1 stroke behind the cut line. He is dirt cheap at 6500 on DK and 8000 on Fanduel this week and worth a dart as it seems like he might be breaking out.
WESLEY BRYAN – Stats are horrible but projected to be 1% or less owned this week and priced at only 6500 on DK and 8000 on FD. He has 84.5 DK points and 67 DK points in his last two tournaments since the covid layoff. He had a solid outing lat week finishing T24 with a score of -11. He also had a solid approach game last week going +2.33 SG approach for the tourney which LED THE TOURNEY in that category. He was even on putting and had a solid T2G at +1.22.
RYAN ARMOUR – You want to win a GPP? Find the guy that is priced below 7000 on DK that will return you 100 DK points. Ryan Armour is projected at 0% ownership so I’m assuming he is somewhere between 0%-.05% because I round to the nearest 1%. He is coming off 110 DK points last week at the Travelers where he finished T6 with a score of -15. I will note that he was +1.81 in the SG: putting and -0.61 in approach so that means he was a bit lucky but still putting up that score at his price tag is ridiculous! He also made the cut at the RBC but finished 74th with only 63 DK points. He started off hot with a 69, then a 68 and then fell off a cliff with a 71 and 74. Stats aren’t great but with that run last week and making the cut here last year we have to put him in the GPP player pool.
TROY MERRITT – Almost min priced at 6400 on DK and 7700 on FD he is an ugly dart. His stats are horrible and he is all over the place on his score cards. He did finish T60 last week at -4 and had some great rounds and some shit rounds. He started off the Travelers with a 68 (-2) which was solid and then came back in round 2 with a bogey free 64 (-6) putting him at -8 for the tourney. Rounds 3 and 4 he fell apart shooting back to back 72s for (+2) each round. I want to explain the WHY behind this pick because on the surface it doesn’t make sense. In his last 9 tournaments played he has high scores of 109.5, 91.5 and 92 DK points and priced at only 6400. 90 DK points at 6400 (DK) is a return of 14x value. Now if you look at Bryson Dechambeau priced at 11,700 on DK to get 14x out of him you need 163.8 DK points and that really isn’t even possible or in the range of outcomes.
The goal to winning a GPP is to get the highest “X” return possible on your salary. You want to look at the players that have the “possibility” of a monster return and mix in some safe guys to give you a good floor. For cash games (i.e. double ups, triple ups and H2Hs) you want to find the average “cash line” and then target that as a floor. For GPPs you want to find the PIVOTs and LOW OWNED guys. If you are playing a double up and there are 1,000 people and the top 500 make the money then you can take high owned safe plays. If you are playing GPPs and there are 50,000 entrants you want some low owned high upside guys to try to edge the field. I recommend playing 3-4x more double ups than GPPs. Also in your double ups you want to target the “single entry” vs. the multi-entry if you have the option. Cash games you need 5 of 6 to make the cut (usually) to cash your double up, 6/6 through is almost a lock and last week I cashed with 4/6 but it was a crazy week.
Thanks for reading,