The People’s Open, Wasted Management. Doesn’t exactly have the same ring to it this year with only 5,000 fans, but it’s still got my full attention. There’s really no need to over-think this one. We need great Ball Strikers, we need great Approach play, and we need guys who have shown they can get around on the greens here in the past. Now let’s take a trip through the final card!
- Daniel Berger +2200
- Will Zalatoris +5000
- Bubba Watson +5500
- Russell Henley +7500
- Corey Conners +8500
- Byeong Hun An +8500
This is tight card for me, I can’t remember the last time I didn’t take an outright flier on someone 100/1+. But that’s just a testament to my confidence in this group. In case you missed it, I wrote up the Bubba, Henley, Conners, and An plays in Bombs & Values and featured Berger as one of my favorite plays of the week.
I didn’t write up Zalatoris, as his $9,000 DFS price and 50/1 odds are all fair value, but my God if there’s ever a course to showcase the young prodigy’s game, it’s TPC Scottsdale. Despite the wiry frame, he’s one of the longest players OTT in the field, and also one of the sharpest iron players out here. This rookie psychopath already has 4 Top 10s in his last 7 PGA starts. We should have a fun sweat in store for us.
- Russell Knox +105 > Matt Kuchar
- Max Homa -112 > Jason Day
- Sungjae Im -118 > Billy Horschel
After a slight set back last week, we’re now 7-5-1 on Matchups through the first 4 events of the year. We’re getting up to the 10 win mark this week!
First is a matchup of one of my favorite values vs one of my favorite fades. While Kuchar has a strong course history here, I consider it a wash the last two years compared with Knox’s two straight T16s. If we look at recent form, Knox has 5 T25s since Matt Kuchar last delivered his own T25 back in August. At + odds, this one’s a no brainer for me.
I also wrote up Jason Day as a big fade for me as he continues to experiment with his new bag. Max Homa on the other hand comes in on a heater with 3 straight T25s and a T6 at this event last year.
In the Sungjae vs Horshel matchup, I’m really leaning on the Approach numbers. While Horschel has had strong results here in the past, it’s been due to a hot putter bailing out some otherwise average T2G stats. Looking at recent form, Billy has lost strokes on Approach in 9 consecutive events. Not a great track record to come into TPC Scottsdale with! Sungjae’s Ball Striking is much sharper coming in, so an easy lean to him over Horschel for me here.
First Round Leader
- Sebastian Munoz +8000
- Russell Knox +9000
- Kyle Stanley +10000
As we all know, where Munoz goes, I go, so we took a couple weeks off from FRL props, but it’s good to be back! Also sprinkled in some Knox and Stanley action for two guys I’ve written up and think can score well here but was not able to bet outright.
One & Done
- Bubba Watson
There’s a lot of different ways you can go with OAD this week, but the best starting point is always to identify the chalk and try to avoid, if you can. This week, I’m expecting Hideki Matsuyama, Daniel Berger, and Xander Schauffele to be the most popular OAD plays. On a second tier, I think Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm, JT, and Webb Simpson will command high ownership as well.
Although Bubba comes into this tournament with elite Ball Striking numbers and arguably the best Strokes Gained numbers in the Field at the WMPO, I think he goes overlooked this week coming off a MC at The Farmers. Some will prefer to save Bubba for the Genesis or Travelers where he’s known to dominate. But I say this is the time to jump in and avoid the chalk ownership later.
- Russell Henley ($8,200)
- Corey Conners ($7,900)
- Byeong Hun An ($7,300)
I like a lot of guys in the $7-8K range this week so I’ll be playing it fairly balanced. I do think you’re going to need to have one of the Top 3 guys in your lineup this week, whether that’s JT, Rahm, or Xander, so this core should give you some flexibility to interchange.