Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Fantasy Golf: The Tour Championship Preview

One more weekend of quality golf before we shut it down for the offseason with the exception of two events that could draw your passive attention in the President's Cup* and the WGC - HSBC Champions event. It's been quite a year with Jordan Spieth dominating the early half and Jason Day the latter. If 2015 gets the ending it deserves, we're going to see those two battling down the stretch along with some combination of Rory, Rickie, Henrik, Bubba and Rose. As long as Day doesn't lap the field again and Daniel Berger and Steven Bowditch stay out of the way, it's going to be more fun than watching Dustin Johnson try to assemble a bookshelf from IKEA. 

So I get one more shot at a prediction this year . . . who's it going to be? Chalk has obviously shifted heavily to Day. Rory played well last week and has a strong track record at East Lake. Spieth appears to have at least pulled his head out of his ass with a tie for 13th at the BMW and he finished 2nd here in 2013. Stenson won it that year and Rickie seems intent on getting his name in the conversation with the new Big Three. Oh it's a veritable potpourri of tends and storylines and that doesn't even include the suddenly intriguing battle for #1 in the world that has never been this close between three golfers this good.  

So with all of that in mind, I'm going with the forgotten man Justin Rose. Remember him? You know, the 2013 U.S. Open champion who quietly had a 2015 that included a T2nd at the Masters, a 4th at the PGA, a T6th at the British and, most recently, a T3rd at the Bridgestone. Not to mention, his last three finishes at the Tour Championship are T4th, 6th and 2nd. Feels like a nice semi-sleeper. Do we honestly think that someone other than Jason Day is going to win it? Of course not but the FGR has always been about flying in the face of convention. Even when it's completely moronic to do so.    

The Tour Championship Odds

In one of the great FGR finds
of all-time, meet Georgia Salpa.
1. Jason Day - 7/2
2. Rory McIlroy - 6/1
3. Jordan Spieth - 8/1
4. Henrik Stenson - 9/1
5. Rickie Fowler - 10/1
6. Justin Rose - 11/1
7. Dustin Johnson - 16/1
8. Bubba Watson - 20/1
9. Zach Johnson - 20/1
10. Jim Furyk - 28/1

The FGR Tour Championship Top Ten

1. Justin Rose
2. Jason Day
3. Rory McIlroy
4. Jordan Spieth
5. Henrik Stenson
6. Rickie Fowler
7. Zach Johnson
8. Dustin Johnson
9. Bill Haas
10. Kevin Kisner
No luck on finding a model
named "East Lake."

The FGR One and Done Pick: Jordan Spieth

The FGR Sleeper Pick: Scott Piercy

One and Done Picks to Date

Hyundai: Kevin Streelman - $70,667
Sony: Chris Kirk - $42,280
Humana: Russell Knox - M/C
Phoenix: Hunter Mahan - $36,729
Farmers: Hideki Matsuyama - M/C

AT&T: Dustin Johnson - $281,067
Northern Trust: Jimmy Walker - $24,120
Honda: Keegan Bradley - M/C
WGC-Cadillac: Bubba Watson - $540,000
Valspar: Jim Furyk - $23,600
Palmer: Brooks Koepka – W/D
Texas Open: Matt Kuchar - $99,200
Houston Open: Louis Oosthuizen - M/C
Masters: Rory McIlroy - $480,000
Heritage: Patrick Reed - M/C
Zurich: Rickie Fowler - M/C
But we'll keep trying.
Match Play: Graeme McDowell - $49,385
Players: Henrik Stenson - $130,857
Wells Fargo: Webb Simpson - $624,800
Colonial: Zach Johnson - $78,780
Byron Nelson: Gary Woodland - $15,407
Memorial: Justin Rose - $669,600
FedEx St. Jude: Billy Horschel - $168,000
U.S. Open: Phil Mickelson - $23,822
Travelers: Brandt Snedeker - $147,200
Greenbrier: Kevin Kisner - $500,267
John Deere: Robert Streb - $84,600
British Open: Sergio Garcia - $305,878
Canadian Open: Charley Hoffman - $174,725
Quicken Loans: Justin Thomas - $242,875
Bridgestone: Adam Scott - $55,000
PGA Championship: Jason Day - $1,800,000
Wyndham: Bill Haas - $174,825
Barclays: Charl Schwartzel - M/C
Deutsche: Kevin Chappell - $138,600
BMW: Paul Casey - $73,425

Season Total: $7,055,709

Footnotes

* Because it is highly unlikely that I'll write anything about the President's Cup when it actually happens, consider this footnote your official FGR President's Cup Preview. Let's be honest, the President's Cup is still closer to the Skins Game than it is to the Ryder Cup in terms of importance. Anyone who tells you differently either has an agenda or has a name that rhymes with Fim Tinchem. How else do you explain putting Phil Mickelson on the team this year unless you're still treating it like an exhibition? (And for the record, I'm glad they picked Phil because now I might watch it). Oh yeah, this year they're playing it in South Korea. You know, the home of golf.