Welcome to this weeks edition of DFS Datalytics Crush the Course. The PGA is down in Mexico this week and for the second year in a row at Club de Golf Chapultepec for this World Golf Championship event. If you have any questions or comments feel free to tweet me @Rblum8. Let’s get to the picks!
- John Rahm ($10,600 DK) – Rahm has had two weeks off now so he should be plenty rested. He started this year on fire before cooling off a little bit over his past three tournaments. He doesn’t seem to mind the poa greens and gained 5 strokes putting here last year on his way to a 3rd place finish. If Rahm can find the fairway I like his chances to make a ton of birdies and score well. He sits at #3 in my model in BoB% and #4 in Bogey Avoidance. If that trend holds up I expect to see Rahm near the top of the leader board come Sunday afternoon.
- Tommy Fleetwood ($10,000) – I made the mistake last week of fading Tommy and I am not going to make that mistake again. Tommy has been playing lights out lately and there’s no reason to believe he stops this week. He sits in the top 10 in my model in Scrambling, SG:App, SG:Par5, SG:T2G and Fairways Gained. As one of the best ball strikers in the world it is difficult to imagine Tommy not being in contention again this week.
- Paul Casey ($8,400) – This seems like a huge under-pricing by DraftKings to me. Casey hasn’t missed a cut in over a year now and talked about how much he loved this course last year. Without his cut making streak being in jeopardy I expect Casey to score extremely well this week. He sits at #1 in my model in SG:App and #6 in BoB%. Paul Casey is going to win on the PGA Tour very soon and it very well could be this week.
- Adam Hadwin ($7,500) – I wanted to find someone flying a little under the radar this week as the 4th member of the Core Fore and I settled on Adam Hadwin. At $7,500 I think he is one of the better value plays this week and I will have a lot of exposure. He sits at #2 in my model in Scrambling, #5 in Proximity from 100-125 yards, #4 in Fairways Gained and maybe most importantly #1 in Bogey Avoidance. Hadwin should have a lot of birdie chances this week and if his putter gets hot he could be a nice surprise contender.
Best of the Rest:
- Jordan Spieth ($10,500) – It’s looking like Spieth might be going a little under the radar this week and if that is the case I am going to be thrilled. Up to this point he hasn’t had the Spieth-like results that we are used to seeing. His putting has let him down but that has been better as of late. Jordan has gained strokes putting his last two starts and if that continues we could be looking at his first win of the 2018 season this week. We know his iron and wedge game will be on so if he can complete the hat trick watch out.
- Ross Fisher ($8,200) – If it weren’t for such limited statistical data on Fisher he very well could be my favorite play this week. Fish has won 5 times over in Europe and finished 3rd in this event last year. He gained almost 6 strokes on his approach shots and gained over 6 strokes putting. With limited data he sits at #6 in my model in SG:App and SG:Par5 and is #7 in BoB%. A lot of people don’t know much about him and that should keep his ownership extremely low this week. Not only will I be well overweight on Fish this week but he is also my One and Done pick.
- Thomas Pieters ($8,300) – Sticking with the Euro golfer approach here. Pieters finished 5th here last year and seemed to be extremely comfortable on the course. If Pieters can avoid the temptation to hit driver I like his chances to go low. He sits at #2 in my model in GIRs Gained and #3 in SG:App and Bogey Avoidance. Last year he gained almost 7 strokes on the field on his approach shots and I expect more of the same this week.
- Jason Dufner ($7,500) – I was high on Dufner last week and although he had a fairly disappointing weekend I’m going right back to him in Mexico. His approach game has been very good lately and at last years event he gained over 5 strokes in this department. His putting has let him down a little bit recently but word on the street is that he has a new putting coach. I expect Dufner to do better than his T23 finish here last year.
Low Owned Darts: Due to the smaller field there aren’t a ton of options for darts this week, however there are 2 guys that I think could fit this category.
- Francesco Molinari ($7,300) – Form has not been great recently but Molinari hits a ton of greens and fairways. His putting has been pretty bad lately but we’ve seen guys catch fire with the flatstick out of nowhere before. Molinari gained over 5 strokes on his approaches here last year on his way to a 20th place finish. If his putter can just be serviceable I like him to reach value. If you’re going to play the higher priced guys you’ll need someone like Molinari to save some salary.
- Abraham Ancer ($6,700) – If you want a true dart look no farther than Abraham Ancer. Ancer was born in Mexico and should be familiar with the course conditions. He’s not long at all but distance isn’t necessary at this course. Ancer has made 3 cuts on the Tour this season so with no cut I’m willing to roll the dice at this price to stack up on some big guns.
Good luck this week!