Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Fantasy Golf: AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am

From a purely entertainment standpoint, you have to be impressed by what the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am is able to accomplish every year. All at the same time it somehow manages to make (a) Bill Murray unfunny, (b) Bill Belichik less likable, and (c) Peter Kostis more of a suck-up than he is in a week when he's not trying to awkwardly banter with "celebrities" like the host of The Bachelor and the guy who wasn't Will Smith on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Noticeably and thankfully absent this year will be the likes of Chris Berman (for obvious reasons), Jim Harbaugh (so we don't have to see his mom khakis) and relatively unknown comedian Gary Mule Deer who used to get airtime presumably to make Murray's tired golf schtick seem funny.

"No I'm not about to cry . . . but did
you really not save me a donut?"
What this all means is that a healthy chunk of tournament airtime will not be devoted to shots hit by Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy but that's ok. Who wants to watch them play one of the top five courses in the world anyway when you have the chance to see Larry the Cable Guy chunk a wedge and take a bow or Chris O'Donnell hit a nice 6-iron and then offer the impish smile of a man who's made millions of dollars as an actor with a range that extends from "sensitive guy who is about to cry" to "sensitive guy who is now in fact crying." But as usual, I digress.    

Last week's disastrous Hideki Matsuyama pick notwithstanding, the chart continued to yield positive results including Brendan Steele (T3), Martin Laird (T9) and Rickie Fowler (T11) along with guys I should've recommended based on past performance like Phil Mickelson (T5) and Daniel Berger (T11). (Actually, I made a crack about Berger not being able to get it done against decent competition so I can see how you might have interpreted that as something other than a vote of confidence). We're going to keep riding it. If nothing else, it looks good in the middle of the previews and it gives me something to do on Mondays when I don't feel like working. Now I just need to find something for the other three days. (The FGR doesn't work on Shabbat*).   


This week the main thing the chart tells us is that really good players do well at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am (that's certainly helpful). Nine of the last thirteen winners have been Dustin Johnson (2), Jordan Spieth, Phil Mickelson (3), Brandt Snedeker (2) and Jimmy Walker. To that list you can add Jason Day who has finished 6th or better in three of the last five years. You'd do well to pick any of those guys except for Walker who is still recovering from the most misdiagnosed golf ailment since Jose Maria Olazabal's feet in 1995.** From a value standpoint, however, I like Spieth at $10,700. He's never had a bad go at this event and he just missed a cut so he's really pissed-off in that adorable Jordan Spieth kind of way. 


"Oh good gracious where in
the heck is that one going?"
The other less celebrated guys who warrant your attention based on past consistency are Patrick Reed (more on him below), Pat Perez, Chesson Hadley, Kevin Streelman and Matt Jones (yes Matt Jones). If you want to go super deep, take a look at Nick Watney who now plays his only good golf here . . . though DraftKings has baked that into him being overpriced at $7,700. And before you go getting all caught-up in Chez Reavie mania which I know is tempting, note that he usually stinks here (and I just sealed a top five for Chezarino).        

Feel free to draw your own conclusions from the rest of the data. 

THE AT&T PEBBLE BEACH SUPER COOL HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE CHART



2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
Dustin Johnson
3rd
T41
T4
T2nd
M/C
T5
Jordan Spieth
1st
T21
T7
T4
T22
DNP
Brandt Snedeker
4th
T35
1st
M/C
1st
DNP
Jason Day
T5
T11
T4
T64
6th
DNP
Patrick Reed
T23
T6
T29
T13
T7
DNP
Pat Perez
T14
T41
T4
T7
T50
T58
Jon Rahm
T5
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
Phil Mickelson
65th
2nd
DNP
T19
T60
1st
Rory McIlroy
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
Matt Kuchar
M/C
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
Patrick Cantlay
T48
DNP
DNP
DNP
T9
DNP
Gary Woodland
T5
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
J.B. Holmes
T23
T11
T10
T61
T50
M/C
Chesson Hadley
DNP
M/C
T10
T10
DNP
DNP
Kevin Kisner
T10
DNP
M/C
T64
DNP
M/C
Chris Kirk
T39
DNP
M/C
T61
2nd
DNP
Matt Jones
T23
T11
T7
T45
T30
M/C
Jason Kokrak
T23
T30
M/C
T19
M/C
T9
Kevin Streelman
T14
T17
M/C
DNP
T40
T9
Kevin Na
DNP
M/C
M/C
T4
T22
T5
Jimmy Walker
T55
T11
T21
1st
T3
T9
James Hahn
T58
M/C
T29
M/C
T3
DNP
Nick Watney
T14
DNP
2nd
M/C
M/C
T40
Jonas Blixt
T58
3rd
M/C
DNP
DNP
T40
Cameron Smith
M/C
T11
M/C
DNP
DNP
DNP
Chez Reavie
M/C
T26
M/C
DNP
T62
M/C
Kevin Chappell
T48
M/C
T18
T35
M/C
T69
Luke Donald
T23
T26
DNP
DNP
DNP
DNP
Kelly Kraft
2nd
T70
DNP
DNP
T40
DNP
Hunter Mahan
M/C
T70
T54
6th
T16
T15

The one and done options are kind of obvious this week - D.J., Spieth, Day or, if you don't want to go that high caliber, then pick Snedeker who showed some signs of life in Phoenix last week. That's why I'm going with Patrick Reed. After Matsuyama's W/D last week, I need a fuck you pick and who better for that than the prickly abrasive Reed? Besides, he's got a couple top tens here over the past few seasons and he's way overdue for a win to end a drought that extends back to August of 2016.

At least Kelly Rohrbach is playing
again. I'm sure that son of a bitch
Aaron Rodgers is dating her too.
The One and Done Pick: Patrick Reed

The Sleeper Pick: Jason Kokrak

The DraftKings Top Ten Value Picks 

Dustin Johnson
$11,700
Jordan Spieth
$10,700
Pat Perez
$8,600
Chesson Hadley
$8,500
Brandt Snedeker
$8,100
Patrick Reed
$7,900
Kevin Streelman
$7,300
Chris Kirk
$7,100
Jason Kokrak
$6,900
Matt Jones
$6,800

Footnote

* Certain religions (none of which I am remotely affiliated with) recognize Shabbat as a day of rest that begins a few minutes before sundown on Friday. Since I'm already co-opting a religious observance that I just learned about a few months ago, what's the difference between a few minutes and a few hours? And what really is the definition of "a few"? Could it mean seven, maybe even eight hours? I think so. Ok it's official. Starting Fridays at noon I'll be resting and I would ask everyone to respect that.    

** Olazabal's story is one of those great middle fingers to modern medicine which wasted two years of his career not being able to figure-out why his feet hurt so badly that he couldn't walk. (Thanks Obama). Finally, he went to a homeopathic doctor in German who diagnosed it as a back problem and then he went on to win his second Masters in 1999. This is exactly why I am my own doctor. I even make my own cough medicine (vodka and maple syrup), eye drops (vodka and salt water) and flu vaccine (vodka and Windex). 

Email the Fantasy Golf Report at fgr@fantasygolfreport.com. 
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