PGA DFS is back! Sports betting pro @realfrankbrank uses his model to identify top plays in each price range for your GPP lineups!!
Harbour Town Golf Links
The official course preview by @friedeggpaulie can be found here. In short, Harbour Town plays quite similar to last week’s event at Colonial, but only to a higher degree. Typically, the better players in the world have avoided this event because of where it fits in the usual PGA Tour schedule as well as the inability to hit driver, their main advantage, on many of the holes.
The top-five golfers in the world return this week as the PGA Tour continues its post-lockdown progress through the rest of their 2020 season. The big jumps at the top of the board in terms of salary include Bryson DeChambeau, Xander Schauffele, Daniel Berger, and Collin Morikawa. The drops from the top of the salary board include Webb Simpson, Dustin Johnson, and Rickie Fowler.
Below, we’ll walk through each price range and find potential fits for your DraftKings GPP lineups.
Of the six golfers at the top of this board, my simulations of the four rounds of the tournament only found value in two players: Rory McIlroy and Bryson DeChambeau. The value of DeChambeau is quite small, and considering his new found popularity, it’s time to pivot from our horse from last week in a GPP format.
McIlroy still intrigues me, as he did last week, despite his obvious popularity. Most folks that were burned on Sunday by Rory will forget he was either the favorite or nearly the favorite after every round of last week’s tournament. Given his price point ($11,300), being the favorite of the tournament yet again at 11/1 odds, and his Sunday blow up round last week, he could be lower owned than expected.
As the favorite in my model, as well, Rory is projected to gain 8.9 strokes on the field this week with an expected, or average, DK points of 110. The popularity of Rory is the question mark. Did enough DFS players get burned Sunday to find value? The question is admittedly difficult to answer, but he’ll certainly make some of my lineups.
There’s only four players in this range, and from a GPP perspective, I’m only interested in one of them. Hideki Matsuyama didn’t play last week and will easily be the lowest owned player in the $9k range.
My model doesn’t necessarily find value on Matsuyama at the $9,500 price point, but given his exposure in DK lineups this week, he needs to be in your GPP lineups. Hideki has jumped back towards the top of my simulations with his recent ball striking being the feature of his game. Sure, he absolutely cannot putt, which is a requirement around Harbour Town, but I’ll take my shots considering his expected lower ownership and win equity.
My model expects him to be the 8th best ball striker in this field and third best player tee-to-green. If he can somehow putt, which he tends to do from time to time, he should be at the top of the leaderboard.
In the $8k range, there’s just two players, Patrick Reed and Daniel Berger, noticeably exceeding their salary expectations. Patrick Reed was one of the higher owned players last week due to the course fit, and Harbour Town fits him to an even greater degree. With so much dependency on short game, especially putting, Reed needs to make your cash game lineups, but is relatively useless in GPPs.
Berger, coming off his win, is more than likely in that same boat. Granted, I’m more willing to play Berger in this situation if you forced me to pick between the two, but I’m probably pivoting further down the range.
Tyrrell Hatton is making his return to the PGA Tour this week. Hatton didn’t play last week, which is beneficial towards his ownership this week. Also, having spent most of his time on the European Tour, Hatton comes with some built-in US player bias.
Hatton’s PGA finishes this year include T6, T14, T6, and a win in his last event, the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill. As a serious hothead on the golf course, Hatton can explode in either direction in any given tournament. Hatton is appropriately priced, per my model, at his $8k price range; however, he is worth owning given his exposure is likely going to be lower than anyone else in this range.
It’s time to go back to the well with Harris English. Considering how much he was loved and owned last week, why wouldn’t we love him this week? English’s exposure was even higher than anticipated last week across all formats. All of those burned DFS players will now pivot in other ways.
If you look at English’s round on Thursday, it was a mess. However, he did exactly what we expected in Friday’s round, but it wasn’t quite enough to make the cut. Should we throw out everything we knew to be true last week because of one bad round? Absolutely not. English will be much lower owned this week without any sacrifice in potential.
Bud Cauley is another boom-or-bust player that would be worth owning in some of your lineups in the $7k range with about $400 in excess value. With four top-25s in twelve events this year and three missed cuts, Cauley finished T29 last week, got absolutely zero TV coverage, and may be well worth his price this week, as well.
As a putrid driver of the golf ball, Harbour Town’s features bring Cauley up the board with some potential. My simulations predict Cauley as the 26th0best approach player in this field, 8th in chipping, and 63rd putting. If we throw out strokes gained off-the-tee, Cauley ranks 25th overall in this field at a course where driving only holds about two-thirds of its usual value.
If you are completely avoiding the top of the board, you don’t need to reach into the $6k range. You will need to reach towards the bottom here, though, if you want to feature McIlroy in at least some of your lineups.
The filler spots down here include Cameron Tringale, Brice Garnett, Carlos Ortiz, and Sebastian Munoz. Much like Harris English, I’m not going to be scared off of Carlos Ortiz or Sebastian Munoz if I’m forced down into this range because of one bad round in their first tournaments back to golf.
Cameron Tringale is showing the most excess value in the $6k range in my predictions. Tringale actually sits 28th overall in strokes gained tee-to-green in the 2020 season and 31st in total strokes gained. In a lot of the same ways that Bud Cauley is held back by his driver, Tringale shows the same weaknesses. Given how short he is off the tee, his lack of accuracy with the big stick is a killer to his potential. Harbour Town, though, will negate those concerns which gives Tringale serious top-25 potential.
Feel free to reach out on Twitter (@realfrankbrank) with any questions or sample lineups you may have. Below are some sample lineups of my own.